Now, I suppose these people are entitled to their opinions, and if the doctrine of the Church of England is to be decided by a majority vote, then, I suppose, they have a right to run things as they choose.
But I have a fear; I think that they are shooting themselves in their feet. I have, for instance, noticed with alarm that provision for the education of the Anglican Clergy has again taken a nosedive. Even now it is not unusual to find an Anglican priest whose studies have consisted in two years' correspondence course. This is much less than Catholic dioceses would give a permanent deacon. Such people are usually ordained as non-stipendiary ministers, but (once ordained) in practice, (being both ordained and available) they are frequently appointed to curacies and even incumbencies. I understand that this practice is now being extended, no doubt to save money, to the regular clergy.
In the past, I have lampooned this inadequate training as majoring in not philosophy and theology, moral theology, scripture &c &c, but openness, wholeness, counselling and aromatherapy (or something of the sort). An Anglican priest friend commented that, although I was joking, I wasn't in fact far from the truth.
My worry is for the future. Can these people honestly be said to be theologically literate? Catholic priests study usually for six or seven years in full time residential training. We study Scripture, fundamental theology, philosophy (at least 2 years), Church history (that's what I teach), world religions, sociology, ecclesiology, Christology, dogmatic theology, pastoral theology, homiletics, moral theology (at least 3 years), canon law, counselling, psychology, liturgy………&c. &c. &c.
The implications of a poorly-educated Anglican clergy are (in no particular order):
1) Ecumenical discussions between Catholics and Anglicans will become farcical, at least on a local level (I assume there will always be some theologically literate people at a national level), and have to be confined to the church fête and quiz night.
2) A real understanding of dogmatic and scriptural issues will simply escape those who are uninstructed. This will affect their preaching, and their ministry generally. They will preach their opinions which will have no basis in the wider Christian communion, or else be simply anodyne and convince or convert nobody.
3) Ritual Anglicanism risks descending to the level of a sort of cargo cult that performs rituals that it doesn't understand for reasons that it doesn't understand, and which rituals have no meaning outside the feelings they engender, which end up being their raison d'être. The purpose of a Eucharist, a funeral, whatever, is to make people feel good.
Oh dear, I've ended up saying some hard things which I didn't really want to do. I speak out of a genuine and long-standing affection for the old C of E, and it grieves me to see it tearing itself up like this. The trouble is that, sinking, it seems to think that the first things to be thrown overboard are the lifeboats and lifejackets.