Thank goodness that World Cup fever is over. I for one found it a sickening spectacle of all the worst aspects of masculinity. The England squad, after all, is just another all-male club, like the House of Bishops of the Church of England, and part of the perennial male conspiracy to subjugate women.
Then there is the behaviour of their so-called supporters – beer-sodden louts of the kind who ogle women and pinch their bottoms. I know; I have had those experiences (see my recent book The Divine Entanglement), and though I am not averse to the occasional wolf-whistle (which shows that a girl is still up to the mark) I know how demoralising they can be.
Then, of course, there are the WAGS: mindless females who have sacrificed their integrity on the altar of male dominance. These human Barbie dolls fully deserve the derision that they receive from real women everywhere.
How fitting then that this raucous season of unrepentant maleness should end in tears for the England team and the courageous decision of the General Synod to go ahead with the ordination of women as bishops. For me it is the missiological dimension of that decision which is foremost. Only when women are exercising real power in the Church can we begin to speak to the unchurched masses about the scourge of Patriarchy which so recently erupted on the streets of Germany.
Canon A4 is not just one rule in a loose-leaf folder; it is a charter of rights in the war on masculinity. But we must not rest on our laurels. The next stage is the establishment of all-female lists for Episcopal appointments. The war is not won until we have parity in the House and in English football. I’m for the dream ticket: Vivienne Faull for Archbishop of Canterbury and June Osborne as the England coach.
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