Church of England Rejects Female Bishops Vote narrowly fails, likely putting issue on hold for 5 years By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Nov 20, 2012 2:00 PM CST 87 comments Comments The outgoing Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, embraces an unidentified person after the vote failed. Williams supports the idea of female bishops. (AP Photo/Yui Mok, Pool) (Newser) – The Church of England allows women to be priests, but it decided today that they still can't be promoted to bishops. The church's governing body just barely blocked a measure to permit female bishops—the majority was in favor, but the measure missed the required two-thirds majority in the House of Laity by six votes, reports the Telegraph. The outcome means the idea is likely dead for another five years. Columnist Andrew Young at the Guardian doesn't mince words: "I think I have just watched the Church of England commit suicide," he writes. Young blames "conservative evangelicals" who "do not, quite simply believe that women should exercise teaching authority over men."