West parishes which opted out of local control over the ordaining of women bishops are waiting to see what church leaders arrange after their bishops joined the Roman Catholic Church.
A number of traditional Church of England congregations in the region had chosen to leave their local dioceses and be ministered by the Bishop of Ebbsfleet, Andrew Burnham.
Parishes such as St Peter’s in Devizes, Wiltshire were unhappy at the prospect of the ordination of women bishops and the Church of England’s tolerance of gay vicars. St Peter’s opted out of its local Diocese of Salisbury and was instead run by Bishop Andrew, who shared its views.
But now the bishop, along with several other high-profile CofE leaders, has decided to take up the Pope’s offer of a role in the Roman Catholic Church.
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