Sunday Thoughts on Ordination of Women

As a traditional force for social justice, the Catholic Church has been hobbled by the scandal of priests abusing children and the Vatican’s long-term neglect of the issue.

So when the Vatican gets around to declaring priestly pedophilia a grievous crime against Canon Law, with the same voice, they condemn trying to ordain a woman. Come on, guys. You need women leaders, not just running schools and hospitals, but sitting right within the college of cardinals.

The arguments against women priests are pure sophistry — men looking through the retrospectoscope to define 12 male apostles among Jesus’ many followers and viewing the women as handmaidens hanging around to wash men’s feet with their hair. It feels like pure 15th century misogyny and a deep-seated mistrust of the power of women.

We’re quick to criticize cultures that veil women, but what about cultures that gag them?

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3 Responses to Sunday Thoughts on Ordination of Women

  1. Samantha Groark says:

    Susan, thanks for posting this. This is an issue I am fascinated by because it presents a curious issue regarding the Church and contemporary justice. I know plenty of Jesuits who support the ordination of women, and while most of the Jesuits are left relatively alone by the Vatican, I know a few who have been threatened with excommunication unless they renounce their publicized support of women priests. Whenever I ask a more conservative priest about the ordination of women, they refuse to acknowledge my concerns as even serious. They chuckle and refer to the gender of the [known, erm, published] Apostles, and how women can feel free to become Sisters. Maybe Sisters should just fight harder to be able to practice mass? I don’t know. With the world in the shape it is in, plus the decline in the Church in general, I will be interested to see the future of the priesthood.

    • madinpursuit says:

      You’re welcome, Sam. In Rochester we had a parish that totally revitalized a poor neighborhood; then the pastor made the “mistake” of initiating the ordination of women and marrying gays. There was an agonizing stand-off with Rome and our bishop was caught in-between. I don’t think Fr. Callan got excommunicated right away but he was banished to Podunk and wound up reconstituting a church here in Rochester independent of Rome. What with crazy episodes like that and the current mistreatment of nuns, I’m surprised there isn’t more of a schism developing. I guess liberals just quietly become Unitarians but it seems tragic for men and women with vocations.

  2. I just can’t wrap my brain around why female ordination is such a HUGE issue to many Christians, don’t understand and probably never will.

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