Kenya synod affirms support for women bishops

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[Nairobi, Kenya, Anglican Ink] The 24th meeting of Anglican Church of Kenya’s General Synod has adopted the first reading of amendments to its constitution governing the election of bishops and creation of new dioceses.

[Nairobi, Kenya, Anglican Ink] The 24th meeting of Anglican Church of Kenya’s General Synod has adopted the first reading of amendments to its constitution governing the election of bishops and creation of new dioceses.

Meeting from 25-26 September 2019 at All Saints Cathedral in Nairobi, clergy and lay delegates from the 40 Kenyan dioceses along with members of the House of Bishops adopted proposals to reform the episcopal election process and to clarify language allowing and encouraging women priests to stand for election to the episcopate. The resolutions will  now been sent to the dioceses for review. They will return to the next meeting of Synod in 2021 for action.

Delegates to synod are also understood to have reaffirmed their support for women bishops, AI was told. The language of the current constitution states that any priest in good standing in the province aged 35 and older is eligible to stand for election. The consensus of synod was that the language of the constitution should explicity state that male or female clergy may stand for election — not relying upon grammar to imply that male pronouns in the language of the constitution include the female.

While the constitution and canons permit the election of female bishops in Kenya, the current Archbishop of Kenya, the Most Rev. Jackson Ole Sapit, has endorsed the GAFCON moratorium on electing new female bishops in the GAFCON provinces. South Sudan has a female assisting bishop, but the GAFCON archbishops have pledged to oppose the election of new women bishop at this time.

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