Saturday, April 12, 2008

Australia's First Female Bishop

With a heading like that you would expect it to be front page news. It was for one leading Melbourne newspaper - it never made the ink on the other.

Melbourne's "The Age" newspaper yesterday (Friday 11th April 2008), reported on the forthcoming consecration of Perth Archdeacon, Kay Goldsworthy, making her Australia's first female Bishop. It was front page news today in "the Age". However, the "Herald Sun" - the "other" Melbourne paper - made no report on the historical event (I read both papers today - and yes, not one mention).

So, for those interested, here is a little tidbit from: Epiphany to Bishop by "Age" reporter Ben Doherty:

"In 1986, she was one of Australia's first female deacons. In March 1992, she was among the first 10 women to be appointed priests in Australia. Now, the 51-year-old married mother of twin boys is set to break the final, patriarchal barrier of the Australian Anglican church. Next month, Archdeacon Goldsworthy will be consecrated as Australia's first woman bishop after a decades-long battle promoting women's ordination in the church."

But all has not gone smoothly for this woman, who at the age of 16yo, received "The Call":

"Not surprisingly, her appointment has been controversial. Conservative dioceses, in particular the wealthy and influential diocese of Sydney, do not allow women priests, and would not recognise Bishop Goldsworthy. But the majority of Anglican dioceses in Australia — 18 of 23 — accept women in the ministry. The diocese of Melbourne has about 70 women priests, representing about one-fifth of the clergy, and the proportion is similar across most of Australia."

So, the first steps have been taken .......

Bravo Kay!

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