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Female Bishops Deal Will Happen, Says Justin Welby, Archbishop Of Canterbury (PICTURES)

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The next Archbishop of Canterbury has insisted that women will eventually be ordained as bishops despite the change being voted down last night.

Justin Welby said the General Synod had "overwhelmingly" backed the idea, although it did not receive the two-thirds majority needed among lay members on Tuesday.

Welby, Bishop of Durham until he takes over from Dr Rowan Williams next year, said he agreed with comments by the Archbishop of York John Sentamu.

"Sentamu has said there will be women bishops and I agree with him," he told the Press Association.

justin welby

Welby insisted he believed legislation would eventually pass

"The Church has voted overwhelmingly in favour of the principle. It is a question of finding a way that there is a real consensus that this is the right way forward.

"That is going to take some time, some care, and some prudence."

Asked whether he was determined to push the issue, Welby, who had earlier tweeted that yesterday was a "very grim day", said: "I'm going to listen to all the other bishops and we will talk together and decide together."

Earlier on Wednesday, Dr Williams said the Church of England has a "lot of explaining" to do after rejecting the legislation.

general synod

The church's General Synod voted against allowing female bishops on Tuesday night

"Whatever the motivation for voting yesterday whatever the theological principle on which people acted and spoke, the fact remains that a great deal of this discussion is not intelligible to our wider society," he said.

"Worse than that, it seems as if we are wilfully blind to some of the trends and priorities of that wider society.

"We have some explaining to do, we have as a result of yesterday undoubtedly lost a measure of credibility in our society."

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