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Archive for the tag “alienation of women from church”

Pink Smoke! Women Priests – finally!

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Small numbers of Catholic women are ignoring the ban on female priests                                                                                         and are ordained without the church’s acknowledgment.

May 25, 2013|By Maria L. La Ganga, Los Angeles Times

SAN FRANCISCO — The priest will be ordained in a purple Lutheran church. The Communion bread, symbolizing the body of Christ, will be gluten-free.

The congregation will pray to “our mother our father in heaven.”

But the real departure from Roman Catholic tradition will be evident when Maria Eitz approaches the altar Sunday for the laying on of hands that turns parishioner into priest.

Over the last decade, as the Vatican has faced a serious shortage of priests, a small but growing number of women have answered what they believe to be a call from God. California is home to more ordained Catholic women than any other state. Eitz — a retired theologian with four adopted children — will be the first woman ordained as a Catholic priest in San Francisco.

BIG angelThe more than 120 women worldwide who have been ordained as Roman Catholic priests and deacons say their faith gives them comfort and hope. But that same faith also is bound by Canon Law 1024. Short and blunt, the church edict states that “a baptized male alone receives sacred ordination validly.”

The Vatican has said that women who presume to be priests, and those who help them, are committing a grave sin. And like Catholics who have abortions or commit heresy, female officiants are subject to the ultimate penalty — automatic excommunication. The church does not acknowledge ordained women or the sacraments they offer.

The first female priests were ordained in 2002 on a boat on the Danube by a bishop who previously had broken ranks with the Vatican. A year later, bishops who asked to remain anonymous until after their death for fear of reprisal ordained the first female bishops so that they, in turn, could ordain other women.

According to Roman Catholic Womenpriests-USA Inc., more women are expected to be ordained as priests and deacons in 2013 than in any previous year.

To Eitz, the threat of excommunication is meaningless. It has happened to her once already, when she became a deacon in 2012. She ignored it then and ignores it now, she said, because “if you are baptized, you cannot be unbaptized. If you are called to the table that God calls people to, you cannot be excluded.”

The soft-spoken 72-year-old said she was taking the controversial step because “it is right and just.”

“It needs to happen. Not so much for myself … but for the people who will come after,” she said. “For the girls. For the other women.”

BIG angel

At 9:30 a.m. on the Saturday before Mother’s Day, Eitz and Victoria Rue prepared for Mass at Sophia in Trinity, which describes itself as “a Roman Catholic community celebrating a radically inclusive God.”

The adherents gather in a small chapel at the rear of Trinity Episcopal Church — whose main sanctuary was shuttered four years ago because the congregation could not afford to retrofit the 120-year-old sandstone fortress, with its Tiffany stained-glass windows and E.M. Skinner organ.

Like Sophia, most of the communities led by female priests meet twice each month, either in private homes or non-Catholic churches whose members sympathize with the effort to ordain women.

Eitz is Sophia’s deacon; Rue is its priest.

Their first duties on this chilly spring day, however, were far from priest-like: They cleaned up a clutter of coffee cups and sugar packets and rearranged the chairs from straight rows into a circle. In its center, they set up the altar — a wobbly table steadied by a wad of paper napkins.

As two dozen or so worshipers filed into the chapel, Eitz and Rue donned crisp white clerical robes.

But not for long.

“As you know,” Rue told the congregation, “Maria and I wear these robes because they are symbols of our baptism. But because … separation between the clerics and lay people is rampant in our Roman Catholic Church, Maria and I think it is very important to not wear them, these albs.

“So we take them off,” she said, “to bear in mind that we are all one.”

A voice from the circle chimed in: “Didn’t Jesus say we are all priests?”

“Exactly,” said Rue, who has a doctorate in theology and teaches comparative religious studies at San Jose State University.

The robes fell.

It was just one of the signs that this would not be Mass as most Catholics know it.

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There were some familiar touchstones — the collection basket got filled, the sign of peace was exchanged. And like male priests the world over, Rue urged parishioners: “Let us proclaim the mystery of faith.” The group responded in the usual way: “Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.”

On this day, though, the reading was from the Gospel according to Luke, acted out by two members of the congregation. The homily — more conversation than sermon — was about “How do we encounter God in our lives?” Rue said. “How is this Eucharist an encounter?”

The congregation’s core beliefs are another story too. Rue and Eitz support abortion rights, contraception, married priests and same-sex marriage. Rue is a married lesbian who has been out since 1973.

As for Communion, John “Fitz” Fitzgerald, a regular at the Sophia services, had baked the sacramental bread at home. He has been experimenting with a gluten-free recipe because Eitz requested it for her ordination. He is not yet happy with the results, golden brown and a little lopsided.

Unlike during traditional Mass, Rue did not hand each parishioner a piece of the Eucharist while declaring, “The body of Christ.” Instead, Sophia’s members passed the plate of bread around the circle. Each took a piece, looked at his or her neighbor, said, “You are the body of Christ” and passed the plate along.

Then Rue prayed: “May God bless you and keep you. May she be gracious to you. May she lift up the light of her countenance upon you. And may our good God give you peace.

“Mass has ended,” she intoned.

“And the service has just begun,” the group responded.

::

Eitz was born in Germany and spent several years in an orphanage after World War II. She did not become a Catholic until she was a young adult, and she never dreamed of being a priest.

“I was never drawn to Catholicism  or to God, if you want — because of sin and forgiveness,” she said. “It was always the knowledge that there has got to be justice.”

Eitz sat at her dining room table, preparing for her ordination. Bishop Regina Nicolosi of Minnesota would preside. The wall behind Eitz was strung with bells — each representing a different chapter of her life.

There was one from Saigon, a reminder of the orphans she helped airlift out during the Vietnam War and the children she adopted as a single mother in the 1970s. There are several from East Africa, where she arranged medical care for a nomadic tribe during a deadly drought in Sudan in the 1980s. One was a gift when she became a deacon.

A banner stamped with brightly colored children’s handprints was hung on the living room wall. For 36 years, Eitz ran a program called Respite Care from her home on the edge of Golden Gate Park, working with special-needs children as part of the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center.

When she began attending Sophia in Trinity in 2010, “it was an utter joy to have women at the altar,” Eitz said. “It was actually a matter of justice, because, you see, that is what needs to happen.”

The San Francisco Archdiocese begs to differ.

Calling the women’s ordination movement a “fringe group,” spokesman George Wesolek said he was unaware of Eitz’s upcoming ordination. The Catholic Church, he said, relies on scripture and tradition and ordains men alone because Jesus was a man and picked men as his apostles.

“The thing you have to recognize here is that the … church is 1.2 billion members,” Wesolek said. “The issue of women’s ordination and even same-sex marriage are kind of like boutique issues in the church. It’s the American church. We’re 75 million, but we’re really a minority.”

But Gary Macy, chairman of Santa Clara University’s religious studies department, argued there was “very good evidence of the ordination of women as deacons up until the 12th century.… There are descriptions of women who led the liturgy.”

Sophia in Trinity members, such as Sherri Maurin, believe that their congregation’s concerns are central to Catholicism, a religion that they refuse to leave and are intent on changing. It is a faith, she said, that needs priests like Eitz.

“I have always felt that Maria was called to priesthood,” said Maurin, who described herself as a full-time peace activist. “She is a teacher, a caregiver and a model.”

Eitz said she was not concerned about the controversy — or the punishment. She has wrestled with her own uncertainty and knows she is doing the right thing. However, she said, she was a little rattled by how much life is going to change.

 

What calms her mind? Hafiz, a Sufi poet from the 14th century, and Mary Oliver, whose poems weave the natural and spiritual worlds.

With fog blanketing her Inner Richmond neighborhood and her cocker spaniel sleeping at her feet, Eitz opens a collection of Hafiz’s work. She has marked her favorite poems with feathers. She begins to read out loud.

“I / Have / Learned / So much from God  / That I can no longer / Call / Myself / A Christian, a Hindu, a Muslim / A Buddhist, a Jew,” she read, beginning to  relax. “The Truth has shared so / much of itself / With me /  That I can no longer call myself / A man, a woman, an angel / Or even pure / Soul.”

maria.laganga@latimes.comimages

Not a Roman Holiday – New Pope Censures Nuns

Stained GlassBy Simone Campbell, Published: April 19 – Washington Post

“I would be lying if I wrote that I was not hurt by the reaffirmation of the censure of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) and by extension of NETWORK, the Catholic social justice lobby that I lead. I had hoped that the censure would quietly disappear in an Italian bureaucratic way. But this is not to be. Rather we are to continue to be caught in macro-church-politics of a group of Catholics at odds with the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).On April 6, the Vatican announced that Pope Frances had appointed Franciscan leader the Rev. José Rodriguez Carballo as a key leader in the department that works with religious men and women around the world.This was seen as a move toward healing of the relationship between the Vatican and American women religious.On Saturday, April 13, Pope Frances announced the formation of an advisory committee that represents the global church leadership and only one member of the Curia.

Then on Monday, April 15, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) reaffirmed the 2012 censure of LCWR(and NETWORK) as undermining the faith in the United States.

Guest Voices

Archive

From my vantage point (excluded from the halls of power and never consulted before being named as a problem by CDF) it appears to me that these actions continue to be about both church and U.S. politics. Women religious are a soccer ball between competing church departments. None of this is really about faith. The Vatican officials continue to say that they like our work when we do direct service, but they do not like our politics when they do not align with some U.S. bishops’ hard right views…”

SEE the Washington Post 04/19/2013

http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/on-faith/vatican-plays-politics-with-american-sisters-and-nuns/2013/04/19/

Mad Men in Madison – not Madison Avenue

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Dec 2012

Bishop Morlino bans Madison Dominican sisters from conducting workshops and offering spiritual direction.

Two longtime Madison nuns who lead an interfaith spirituality center have been banned by Madison Catholic Bishop Robert Morlino from holding workshops or providing spiritual direction or guidance at any Catholic churches in the 11-county diocese.

Sisters Maureen McDonnell and Lynn Lisbeth, both Sinsinawa Dominicans, have diverged too far from Catholic teaching, according to a confidential memo sent Nov. 27 to priests on behalf of Morlino. A copy of the memo was leaked to the State Journal.

Two other women connected to the interfaith center, called Wisdom’s Well, also have been banned as part of the same action.

The memo says Morlino has “grave concerns” about the women’s teachings, specifically that they “espouse certain views” flowing from such movements as “New Ageism” and “indifferentism.” The latter, according to the memo, is “the belief that no one religion or philosophy is superior to another.”

The women “may not share an authentic view of the Catholic Church’s approach to interreligious dialogue,” the memo said.

 NOTE:  “Both women have been dedicated to religious life and preaching and teaching Gospel values for nearly 50 years,” the release stated. “We wholeheartedly support our Sisters and hold them in prayer as we continue our mission of participating in the building of a holy and just Church and society.”

The Wisconsin State Journal reported that, at the time Msgr. Bartylla issued his memo, Sr Maureen McDonnell was co-facilitating a weekly class at a high school titled “Just Peace Initiative: The Challenge and Promise of Nonviolence for Our Time.”

Morlino – a big fan of Paul Ryan…not those nuns

APTOPIX_Pot Scandal_Ryan

Historically:  2009

Faithful Progressive Saturday, March 28, 2009

Madison WISconsin – spooky

Madison Bishop Morlino Continues Catholic Purge and Witch-Hunt: Longtime Lay Leader Fired for College Paperimages

I have many Catholic friends in the Madison area who are appalled at Bishop Morlino. Several are torn between thinking of leaving and not letting this extremist Bishop destroy their Church. Bishop Morlino’s hard-hearted, extreme-right wing partisanship stands in sharp contrast with the more compassionate and moderate stance taken by Archbishop Dolan in Milwaukee–soon to be Cardinal Dolan of New York.

Everything is personal and political with this guy, at the great expense of his flock.

Wisconsin State Journal:Martyr or heretic? Bishop Morlino fires church employee over her beliefs

On March 12, Madison Catholic Bishop Robert Morlino fired Kolpack from her position as the full-time pastoral associate at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Beloit. The termination came after Kolpack said she refused the bishop’s request to renounce a 2003 college thesis in which she argued for more gender-inclusive language at Masses and harshly criticized the Catholic hierarchy’s doctrine of only ordaining males.

Her firing has angered parishioners at St. Thomas and set off a national debate on Catholic blogs as to whether Kolpack is a martyr or a heretic.

The situation again casts Morlino as the heavy in a controversial personnel decision. Last summer, the music director at a Verona church was fired after five parishioners brought concerns to the bishop’s office about the director being openly gay.

Morlino declined an interview request Thursday. Diocesan spokesman Brent King said because Kolpack’s situation is a personnel issue, details cannot be discussed, including whether she was fired for her thesis or for the presentation of or denial of any specific church teaching….

Kolpack has been a member of St. Thomas since 1974 and an employee the last 26 years, rising to pastoral associate in 1995. In that position, she performed many of the duties of a priest for the 325 households in the congregation. “She did everything but celebrate Mass,” said church trustee Macy Kunz, who is “shocked and angry” by Kolpack’s firing.

In 1997, Kolpack began work on a master’s of divinity degree at St. Francis Seminary, a Catholic institution in suburban Milwaukee where, at the time, lay women were able to study alongside male seminarians, although they could not be ordained.

posted by Faithful Progressive at 10:45 AM

No Girls Allowed? Sr Mary Luke Tobin at Vatican II

imagesSister Mary Luke Tobin

(May 16, 1908 – August 24, 2006)

was an American Roman Catholic nun

and one of only 15 women auditors invited to the Second Vatican Council, and the only American woman of the three women religious permitted to participate on the Council’s planning commissions.

one of 15 women – she commented:

The L. C. W. R. report also described the conditions contributing to the alienation of women from church and society and their consequent need of reconciliation with both groups. Let me outline briefly some of the alienating factors described in the report:

1. Patriarchy has been a prime concept for the perception and organization of reality. Patriarchy as a worldview of its very nature assumes the alienation of women. It places the male in the center of reality and makes the masculine normative.

2. Women have been excluded or minimized in liturgical worship. The exclusion and/or negation of women in liturgy is one of the most demoralizing experiences for women in the church. If one is invisible in liturgy (especially in the Eucharist), one is quite literally displaced or alienated.

3. Through humor, ridicule or metaphor women have been depersonalized. The joke or humorous quip is a powerful tool of dismissal.

4. It is the experience of women that many clergy and hierarchy relate poorly to them.

5. Women are unable to participate fully in ministry. The concentration of women in stereotypical ministry roles opposes the full range of services.

6. Women are excluded from the structures and processes of church polity. Jurisdiction in the Catholic Church is reserved to the ordained. The exercise of power is, by policy, in the hands of men alone. That situation is of its nature unjust. It breeds disdain for women and their gifts and reinforces their invisibility.

7. Although official church positions on such matters as contraception, sterilization and abortion are not of concern to women only, the existential consequences of those positions bear more heavily on women.

8. Support for measures that would benefit women, such as the Equal Rights Amendment, child-care legislation and earnings-sharing legislation, is conspicuously lacking.

The L. C. W. R. report then lists some of the conditions that could bring about reconciliation. Among them are:

1. Women must make their own decisions and claim responsibility for their lives. The movement toward acknowledgment of one’s self as possessing inherent dignity and worth is a powerful factor in reconciliation.

2. New relationships with men must be established. When men acknowledge their complicity in the oppression of women and their own need for liberation and maturation, the process of their relationship to women is itself liberating.

3. Officials of the church must acknowledge that alienation exists. When the men who hold power in the church are willing to admit that the alienation of women is the result of concrete experiences, policies, attitudes and structures, that fact in itself will promote reconciliation.

4. Structural change must address alienating factors. Any structures that allow for the significant involvement of women in decision making at any level contribute to reconciliation because they go beyond the effects to the systemic causes of alienation.

5. The church as institution and its officials must be willing to grapple with painful, conflict-generating topics and situations. The church as institution is perceived as studiously avoiding certain subjects because they “have been settled” in perpetuity.

Levada: No sister will lose her job …oh, brother!

indexlevada a
Levada says, “No sister will lose her job 
in teaching or charitable work or hospital work as a result of this assessment…as far as I know.” 
(Uh-oh, What about all of the other Sisters?)

NCR Interview – John L Allen Jr interview Cardinal Wm Levada

( Excerpts)

Cardinal William Levada, prefect of the Vatican’s ultra-powerful Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, is a devoted disciple of his boss and mentor, Pope Benedict XVI (86), in virtually every way save one. While the former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was a celebrity as a Vatican official, Levada, who turns 76 today, keeps a much lower profile, preferring to operate behind the scenes.

One theory for why you’re acting now is that you’re worried about property. Specifically, the charge is that the hierarchy wants to assert control over the real estate and other assets controlled by women’s congregations before they walk away with it. Can you respond to that?

Matters of property are not the responsibility of this office. Church law does say that for “alienation of property,” you’re supposed to have approval of the Holy See, though sometimes that’s more honored in the breach than the observance. But such questions are not our competency.

In general, I think the religious orders have a moral obligation, if they’ve got property and wealth on their hands, to do the right thing with it, to be sure that it goes to educational and charitable works in accord with the intentions of the donors.

Certainly, our congregation won’t be in charge of it.

So concern about property had nothing to do with the doctrinal assessment?

Absolutely not.

You said a moment ago that this is not about “the sisters,” but LCWR. Yet looking at recent events, including the apostolic visitation of women’s orders in the States, the LCWR crackdown and the notification on Sr. Margaret Farley, many people can’t help concluding that there is a broad attack underway on nuns in America.

I’ve read some articles along those lines, but it’s just not the case. These things take a lot of time, and they all have their own logic. For instance, we didn’t just wake up one day and say, “Let’s go after Margaret Farley.” Frankly, this came up because of an interview she gave in Ireland. She was there for a conference, and said something along the lines that Ireland ought to approve same-sex marriage. Someone in Ireland objected, asking, “Why is this sister coming from the States and pushing same-sex marriage?” We wrote to her superior and got a vague response about how she’s a wonderful person who enjoys great esteem.

That’s how Margaret Farley came onto our radar screen. It had nothing to do with the LCWR. We then found [her book] Just Love, read the reviews, and the process developed from there.

I don’t see any conspiracy. All of us as Catholics have responsibilities, but especially bishops, priests and religious, to speak the good word that is the faith of the church, which is that God is revealed through Jesus Christ.

imagescaution men working
We have nothing to say about the “Gospel according to Maureen Dowd,” of course, but Margaret Farley is a woman who represents the church.

***

Dowd intimidates Rome by calling a spade a spade.

Cardinal Levada faces accusations/ sex abuse.

Speaking of Property 

Where are Cardinal Levada’s condominiums?

Hawaii and Southern Californa…and…

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Top Ten Catholic Women? Keep Counting…

Hurrah for The Catholic Herald creating a list  of  the  Top Ten Catholic Women

http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/features/2012/05/31/ten-catholic-women-who-changed-the-world/

In This Article

  • Dolores Hope,
  • Dorothy Day,
  • Edel Quinn,
  • Eleanor Josaitis,
  • Flannery O’Connor,
  • Mother Angelica,
  • Mother Teresa,
  • Phyllis Bowman,
  • St Hildegard of Bingen,
  • St Thérèse of Lisieux

Don’t Forget:

Add

Rome: Old Boys Network – no girls allowed?

Image


 

New York  Times:
Vatican Reprimands a Group of U.S. Nuns and Plans Changes

By LAURIE GOODSTEIN

 

The Vatican has appointed an American bishop to rein in the largest and most influential group of Catholic nuns in the United States, saying that an investigation found that the group had “serious doctrinal problems.”

 

The Vatican’s assessment, issued on Wednesday, said that members of the group, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, had challenged church teaching on homosexuality and the male-only priesthood, and promoted “radical feminist themes incompatible with the Catholic faith.”

 

The sisters were also reprimanded for making public statements that “disagree with or challenge the bishops, who are the church’s authentic teachers of faith and morals.” During the debate over the health care overhaul in 2010, American bishops came out in opposition to the health plan, but dozens of sisters, many of whom belong to the Leadership Conference, signed a statement supporting it — support that provided crucial cover for the Obama administration in the battle over health care.

The conference is an umbrella organization of women’s religious communities, and claims 1,500 members who represent 80 percent of the Catholic sisters in the United States. It was formed in 1956 at the Vatican’s request, and answers to the Vatican, said Sister Annmarie Sanders, the group’s communications director.

www.nytimes.com/2012/04/19/us/vatican-reprimands-us-nuns-group.html

We have come a long way, baby? No way

The Women at Second

Vatican Council

http://www.americamagazine.org/content/article.cfm?article_id=11898

From November 1, 1986

Mary Luke Tobin | Archived Article

The end of the second session of the Second Vatican Council, Cardinal Leo Jozef Suenens of Belgium asked his fellow bishops: “Why are we even discussing the reality of the church when half of the church is not even represented here?” This provocative question, midway through a council that was then totally male, was a breakthrough that prodded council members to invite a few “token” women to the ensuing sessions.

How Far have We Come?   See:  cont’d  1986 article from Mary Luke Tobin  

The L. C. W. R. report also described the conditions contributing to the alienation of women from church and society and their consequent need of reconciliation with both groups. Let me outline briefly some of the alienating factors described in the report:

1. Patriarchy has been a prime concept for the perception and organization of reality. Patriarchy as a worldview of its very nature assumes the alienation of women. It places the male in the center of reality and makes the masculine normative.

2. Women have been excluded or minimized in liturgical worship. The exclusion and/or negation of women in liturgy is one of the most demoralizing experiences for women in the church. If one is invisible in liturgy (especially in the Eucharist), one is quite literally displaced or alienated.

3. Through humor, ridicule or metaphor women have been depersonalized. The joke or humorous quip is a powerful tool of dismissal.

4. It is the experience of women that many clergy and hierarchy relate poorly to them.

5. Women are unable to participate fully in ministry. The concentration of women in stereotypical ministry roles opposes the full range of services.

6. Women are excluded from the structures and processes of church polity. Jurisdiction in the Catholic Church is reserved to the ordained. The exercise of power is, by policy, in the hands of men alone. That situation is of its nature unjust. It breeds disdain for women and their gifts and reinforces their invisibility.

7. Although official church positions on such matters as contraception, sterilization and abortion are not of concern to women only, the existential consequences of those positions bear more heavily on women.

8. Support for measures that would benefit women, such as the Equal Rights Amendment, child-care legislation and earnings-sharing legislation, is conspicuously lacking.

The L. C. W. R. report then lists some of the conditions that could bring about reconciliation. Among them are:

1. Women must make their own decisions and claim responsibility for their lives. The movement toward acknowledgment of one’s self as possessing inherent dignity and worth is a powerful factor in reconciliation.

2. New relationships with men must be established. When men acknowledge their complicity in the oppression of women and their own need for liberation and maturation, the process of their relationship to women is itself liberating.

3. Officials of the church must acknowledge that alienation exists. When the men who hold power in the church are willing to admit that the alienation of women is the result of concrete experiences, policies, attitudes and structures, that fact in itself will promote reconciliation.

4. Structural change must address alienating factors. Any structures that allow for the significant involvement of women in decision making at any level contribute to reconciliation because they go beyond the effects to the systemic causes of alienation.

5. The church as institution and its officials must be willing to grapple with painful, conflict-generating topics and situations. The church as institution is perceived as studiously avoiding certain subjects because they “have been settled” in perpetuity.

Not only women religious, but specifically laywomen’s groups, have become articulate on many of these points.

A report, for example, drawn up by an international group, the World Union of Catholic Women’s Organizations (W.U.C.W.O.), serves as a basis for their input to the 1987 World Synod of Bishops on the Laity. W.U.C.W.O. represents Catholic women’s groups with a combined membership of 30 million.

The report reviews developments in the discussion of women’s place in the church since Vatican II, and states that “the way we understand humanity, the way we understand what it means to be a human being created in the image and likeness of God, conditions the roles of people in private and public life, both in society and in the church.

It is now clear that anthropology is responsible for much of the existing stereotyping, discrimination and conflictual divisiveness that exists in the world and in the church.”

The report expressed concern that many women leave the church because the church is insensitive to their desire to “participate fully” in its life and mission.

The momentum created by the emergence of the women’s issue shows no sign of slowing down. Indeed, the very love of the church that women profess and manifest urges them on in this difficult and demanding work. Presuming on the good will already evident among some male leaders of the church, women can have a more secure hope that perhaps a new day of mutuality, equality and sharing may be on its way.

In testimony to this last point, I can cite recent, encouraging statements by two bishops. The Most Rev. Paul J. Cordes, vice-president for the Vatican’s Council for the Laity, speaking at the 1980 United Nations Decade for Women Conference in Copenhagen, said: “The creation of man and woman-recounted in Genesis-underlines the fact that man and woman are absolutely equal in dignity. The Holy Bible teaches us that woman is created in the image of God exactly as man is. It clearly states that both sexes have been created together and that neither one may prevail over the other for any reason of superiority whatsoever.”

And the Most Rev. Louis-Albert Vachon, Archbishop of Quebec, speaking at the most recent synod on the subject of reconciliation, said that the church needs to recognize “our own cultural deformation” and particularly “the ravages of sexism and our own male appropriation of church institutions and numerous aspects of the Christian life.”

Finally, in spite of the tension produced by the women’s issue in a highly conservative institution, it is apparent that the tide is changing. The truth of women’s minimal role in the church is becoming daily more visible.

The socialization of girls toward the recognition of the impressive number of options open to them is proceeding rapidly. Recently I heard a young mother describe her dilemma and confusion at an ordination ceremony when her five-year-old daughter insisted on an answer to her question: “Why are there only men up there?’

Imagine the surge of hope that would be created if a bishop in the United States would write to his people in this vein:

“My dear people: A question that is increasingly asked of the church today is, Can women be ordained? We know that both men and women are equal before God. Today women are showing themselves more and more capable of the myriad ministries needed in the church. Can we not hope and pray for the day when recognition by the official church of the fitness of women for all ministries, including priesthood, may be acknowledged?

“The psychological fears and historical barriers will need to be overcome. But let us all work to eliminate them so that in the future women also may respond to the call to fullness of sacramental ministry, which many of them declare to be their most earnest desire. The Spirit of God is not bound.”

Even though many women may not choose to be ordained, such a message would encourage them because it would convey some recognition of the inequity they have experienced all through the years.

At a recent conference, a layman in the audience asked the presiding bishop: “What shall I tell my daughter when she tells me she would like to be a priest?”

The bishop replied, “Just tell her she will not be ordained, and that for only one reason: She is a woman.”

He continued, “All her life she will be minimized by that reality.” Then the bishop concluded his answer with this statement: “I agree that the situation is unjust. It must change, and it will.”

I hope he is right.

Mary Luke Tobin, S.L., was one of the women auditors at the Second Vatican Council.

God Bless Sr Anita Caspary~ Time Magazine 1970

“You’ve come along way, baby”  Time Magazine

For Sister Anita, as for her nuns, Rome’s uncompromising order amounted to giving up a new mode of Christian service that they believed in deeply; collectively, they decided that they could not step back into the past. “If you bought the whole package of self-determination,” Sister Anita says, “and you were being stopped every little while, then it seemed logical to break away. While I saw the break as inevitable, I didn’t really want it. But I wondered how much energy you could spend fighting authority when you could spend that same energy doing what you should be doing.” Anita Caspary hopes to preserve the best of both worlds in the new community. “

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,876640,00.html#ixzz1bez624sK

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,876640,00.html

ROME: Oh, Boy: No Girls Allowed –

No time for 800 women in Rome – Oh BOY~~~~

Pope, Cardinal Rodé: no time for world’s women religious leaders
by Thomas C. Fox on May. 11, 2010

* NCR Today

Rome

The Holy Father today, (Monday, May 10), according to the Vatican Press Office, received in separate audiences: two prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Belgium, Bishop Lucas Van Looy of Ghent, and Msgr. Koen Vanhoutte, the diocesan administrator of Bruges. He also received Italian Bishop Valentino Di Cerbo of Alife-Caiazzo, accompanied by members of his family.

Nothing unusual – except for a mention of who he did not receive in audience.

Who the Holy Father did not receive in audience was any (or all) of the 800 general superiors of international women religious orders who are in Rome from all corners of the globe for a once in three-year general assembly. These women religious represent close to 1 million women religious worldwide.

The women have been meeting here in Rome since last Friday.

For the record, the Vatican Press Office reports that the Holy Father last Friday (the day the meeting of the women began) received in separate audiences five prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Belgium. Again, for the record, they are Bishop Patrick Hoogmartens of Hasselt, Bishop Aloysius Jousten of Liege, Bishop Gur Harpigny of Tournai, Msg…

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