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Holy Trinity Church
4:27pm Monday 22nd October 2012 in Winchester
A Winchester church is hosting the launch of a local breakaway group from the Church of England over plans for women bishops.
The General Synod – the Church of England’s ruling body – is due to vote on the ordination of women bishops next month (Nov).
Just days before the crunch-vote, Holy Trinity Church in Upper Brook Street is setting-up a Winchester diocesan branch of the “Mission Society of St Wilfred and St Hilda” on Saturday November 16 with the blessing of the Bishop of Richborough.
Created by traditional Anglo Catholic bishops about 18 months ago, the society aims to provide a place within the Church of England for clergy and congregations opposed to women bishops.
The society describes itself as: “led by bishops loyal to the Church of England and her Catholic heritage.”
Holy Trinity Church – which has a congregation of up to 50 - is also part of Forward in Faith, a movement opposed to the ordination of women priests. Father Malcolm Jones, parish priest of Holy Trinity, said the ordination of women was “not according to tradition or theology contained in the Bible.”
Asked if the society recognised Pope Benedict or the Archbishop of Canterbury as its head, he said it was “more complicated.”
Plans for the launch include mass at 12noon followed by a 2pm meeting and prayers at 5pm.