Friday, January 24, 2014


Today's commemoration was about Li Tim-Oi, the first woman to be ordained to the priesthood in the Anglican Communion in 1944. There are many fascinating things about this woman, born in Hong Kong in 1907 and dying in Canada in 1992. She was a woman who worked tirelessly with refugees from China, and having attended a four-year college, had worked for years as a Deacon. Only after three years had passed when there was no priest available to bless the Eucharist did the Bishop of Victoria, Ronald Hall, call her to become ordained. Interestingly, ordaining a woman was compared with Peter’s conversion of Cornelius, the Roman centurion considered to be the first convert among the Gentiles.

Within the Episcopal Church, it appears that there’s an average of 20 to 25% women priests, and incoming priests are approximately 50/50 male and female. Ordination of women is still quite controversial within the church, and the more conservative Anglicans do not ordain women.  Li Tim-Oi was a pioneer for women church leaders.

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