Women bishop legislation hailed step to 'Promised Land'

Legislation which could see the first female bishop in the Church of England selected before the end of this year has been hailed as a step towards the "Promised Land".

A move to halve the consultation period was backed by 358 General Synod members, with 39 voting against and nine abstaining.

Lois Haslam, a member from Chester diocese, speaking in the debate over the legislation, said: "I feel something like what Moses must have felt as he approached the promised land.

"We have wandered round women bishops legislation for many, many years, we are now approaching the promised land and it is exciting."

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Archbishop's plea to church over women bishops

The Archbishop of Canterbury will issue a plea today for the Church of England to "challenge fear" within its ranks as new legislation to introduce women bishops looks on course to gain approval later this year.