08 July 2008

The Vatican's response...

VATICAN CITY, 8 JUL 2008 (VIS) - Given below is the text of a communique released late this morning by the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, concerning recent events within the Anglican Communion.

"We have regretfully learned the news of the Church of England vote that paves the way for the introduction of legislation which will lead to the ordaining of women to the episcopacy.

"The Catholic position on the issue has been clearly expressed by Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II. Such a decision signifies a break with the apostolic tradition maintained by all of the Churches since the first millennium and is, therefore, a further obstacle to reconciliation between the Catholic Church and the Church of England.

"This decision will have consequences on the future of dialogue, which had up until now borne fruit, as Cardinal Kasper clearly explained when on 5 June 2006 he spoke to all of the bishops of the Church of England at the invitation of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

"The Cardinal has been invited once again to express the Catholic position at the next Lambeth Conference at the end of July".