The Church of England today sought to end its internal division over the ordination of women bishops by issuing a decree that bishops cannot properly fulfil their holy duties unless ‘possessed of a willy’.
‘Certain traditional offices of the bishop are in practice impossible to discharge unless endowed with a penis,’ read the Act of Synod published today, ‘and preferably a good long one. While liturgical functions such as the Palm Sunday Pissing-Up-The-Wall ritual and the surreptitious refilling of Communion cups with ‘house white’ could in theory be performed by a woman, for others it is a biological necessity that the bishop is with wang.’
A key sticking point is seen to be the re-enactment of bible scenes for congregations and Sunday school children through the medium of penis puppetry, a popular and central tenet of Anglican teaching. Bishop of Durham Malcolm Possett is believed to be especially gifted in this regard, and his penile rendition of the parting of the Red Sea has achieved fame far beyond the strictly clerical sphere. The Vatican has also waded into the debate by emphasising the important role of the male member in maintaining discipline among altar boys.
Supporters of women bishops have been quick to express their anger at the ruling which threatens to split the Anglican Church along genital lines. ‘What’s wrong with a fanny, for heaven’s sake?’ asked the Reverend Anne Renfrew, priest-in-charge of St Peter’s church in Eastbourne. ‘Are they really saying that having a few inches of pink sausage up your cassock makes you a better bishop? I caught a glimpse of the Bishop of Liverpool’s once and let’s be clear – we’re not even talking chipolata.’
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, is due to make a final plea for unity among the clergy at a press conference tomorrow. Sources say he is desperate to avoid causing any more offence and will urge all members of the Church, both willied and unwillied, to come together once and for all and ‘stop bashing our bishops in public’.