This week the English Anglican world has been all astir with the news that the Church of England is about to appoint (strangely, they don’t elect them over there) its first female bishop. This is old news in Canada, but not so in the C of E.
Also, stop press, since a couple of dozen of the English bishops are also members of the House of Lords, and at the moment they’re all men, a bill has been proposed to make sure we get some women in there too (some people, including yours truly, think that the presence of bishops in the government is a compromise of gospel principles, but apparently that point of view is not currently being considered by the British government or the C of E).
Meanwhile, the Church of England is apparently floating a proposal to identify 150 potential top leaders and groom them for the job with MBA-style training. Reports, and many comments, at Thinking Anglicans here.
Of the many responses, I liked Steve Tilley’s the best. I especially liked the last bit:
For the last eight years I have been doing missional stuff back in the front-line and at grass roots as minister of a planted church which is now hoping to plant again.
Every post has involved investing time and energy in future leaders and growing the Church of England’s talent pool. I can, off the top of my head, name eleven people in ministry and leadership as a result of this work – roughly one every three years.
Think how good I would have been if groomed for future major responsibility? That’s right. Not at all. Those who are worth giving further responsibility to have already invested a considerable amount of time and money in their own development.
By the way, I am really happy in my work.
Meanwhile, I leave you with some words from our sponsor:
Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to (Jesus). “Teacher,” they said, “we want you to do for us whatever we ask.”
“What do you want me to do for you?” he asked.
They replied, “Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in your glory.”…
When the ten heard about this, they became indignant with James and John. Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:35-37, 41-45, NIV 2011)