A Catholic Renewal

~ En radikal blogg ~

"Se, jag gör allting nytt..." (Upp 21:5)

torsdag, november 22, 2007
Fråga John Wijngaards om katolska kvinnliga präster
Jag har fått svar från John att han kan tänka sig att svara på era frågor om detta ämne.

Så nu välkomnar jag alla att ställa alla frågor ni har - på engelska. (Det går också bra att maila frågor till mig på svenska ifall någon vill att jag översätter.)

Han har forskat mycket om detta ur ett katolskt perspektiv - så passa på nu att ta reda på "allt"!!!


John - you're very much welcome to this discussion about women priests from a Catholic view point. Thank you in advance for sharing your insights with us!

Would you like to begin to shortly tell us who you are, and about your research, to those readers who don't know so much about this yet (although I've recommended your books many times here and in other blogs!).

Here is a link to an article you've written - for those who hasn't read it yet:

Church without women leaders. Will women ever govern the Roman Catholic Church?

I also - once again recommend this excellent book of yours to everyone who is interested in the subject - I suppose they can order it through the Women Priests website?

"The Ordination of Women in the Catholic Church - Unmasking a Cuckoo's Egg Tradition"

Welcome, everyone to pose your questions in the comments field!

Etiketter: , , ,

postat av Charlotte Therese Björnström @ 11:31  
46 Kommentar/-er:
  • 22 november, 2007 12:27 sa Anonymous Daniel

    Shalom, John:

    What is your view on the apostle Paul mentions in Romans 16:7? (Junia)

    In many christian circles we are now more and more leaning towards the fact that Junia was indeed a woman.

    If so, wouldn't this be very good grounds for both the catholic church and many protestant organisations as well to reconsider the whole 'ban' on female leadership?

    Love in Christ

  • 22 november, 2007 12:31 sa Blogger Tuve

    Dr Wijngaard
    I would like you to respond to all the arguments against women priests laid forth by Peter Kreeft in his speech.

    I must admit in advance that I do not see any validity in your claims that the church's position in this question is only a consequence of the laws and views of the Roman empire about women. I see no validity in your claims that all the church fathers that have held a position unsuitable for your ideas should be disqualified, as you argue in the article Charlotte links to. As I wrote to Charlotte previously, I think you are very unjust towards, for instance, Ottaviani. I think your article is just an expression of your hate angainst all those who have prevented your dreams about the reformed church!

    But, I quess Charlotte has already informed you about my disrespect and my inabillity to make a difference between person and question?

    She constantly points that out to me...


  • 22 november, 2007 13:52 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    I have a lot of questions that could serve as "discussion starters" - here are a few of them.

    I would like to ask: which reasons do you think are the most important ones regarding introducing women priests in the Catholic Church in our times?

    And: what can we conclude from the history of women ministry in the early Church?

    Many lift up the choices Jesus didn't do as evidence of his (supposedly) active will (reagarding "chosing only 12 men as apostles" for example. What is your view on this?

    How do you meet the most common arguments against women priests today?

    Often when I bring up this issue, there are some traditional Catholics who usually ask me why I stay in the Church if I don't agree with this particular thing. I usually answer that I stay because it's my Church - because I'm deeply part of it. And I also use to point out that women priests isn't a question about faith but practice. So I do share the faith of the Church - thus I'm a Catholic, even though I think some things regarding practice should change in our days, like they did in history.

    Any reflections on that? How do you usually answer those who point you and others who think that also women are called to be priests to the exit door (as if there were any such door for those who are baptized) in the Church?


  • 22 november, 2007 17:24 sa Blogger ulrich

    Charlotte you ask very interesting question that get to the core of the women-ordination subject, I wonder if one can find answers to some of your questions from how anglicans (or perhaps Lutherans) came up with another answers than Rome , that is by ordaining women?
    I also wondered why you remain RC, and thanks for the answer.
    From another John (hermitmonk)

  • 23 november, 2007 11:21 sa Blogger Z

    Hello, i'm all for women priests, but my friend who is against has a question, which sounded interesting to me:
    (First, he thinks one can also ask Kreeft: Which do you think is the best argument FOR ordaining women?)

    Which do you think is the best argument from the "other side" i.e. the best argument against women priests?

  • 23 november, 2007 12:54 sa Blogger john

    Best argument for women's ordination:
    because they are human beings and part of the same species. If they can be doctors, lawyers, Queens, saints, be mothers, give birth to priests, give birth to God (Jesus Christ) why can they not be priests?
    Argument against? NONE; except the attitudes and emotions of those who treat women as less than human - huMAN! John

  • 24 november, 2007 21:25 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    I heard from John W. that there were some technical problems when he tried to post answers the other day - so we're trying to solve that - his answers will follow here as soon as it works...!


  • 25 november, 2007 19:02 sa Blogger john.nmw

    Dear Daniel,

    Most commentators will agree that Junia was a woman who shared in the ministry.

    Read a good article about it here: http://www.womenpriests.org/classic/brooten.asp



  • 25 november, 2007 19:08 sa Blogger john.nmw

    Dear Tuve,

    Please, read my book on The Non-Ordination of Women Priests in the Catholic Church, in which the arguments are worked out in detail.

    Information about the book is here: http://www.womenpriests.org/interact/cuckoo1.asp

    Peter Kreeft's arguments have been amply counter on CIRCLES. Go here: http://www.womenpriests.org/circles/

    As to your own views, I respect them since I believe in a free expression of one's opinion, as Vatican II prescribed.

    God bless,


  • 25 november, 2007 19:10 sa Blogger john.nmw

    Dear Charlotte-Therese and Ulrich,

    Your questions are valid. They are in the main already answered on our website. I recommend to your visitors that they start from: http://www.womenpriests.org/preasons.asp



  • 25 november, 2007 20:25 sa Blogger ulrich

    I visited the www.womenpriests.org website; excellent and well researched and I appreciate the many lanhuages.


  • 26 november, 2007 08:53 sa Blogger Tuve

    Thank you!
    I looked in the forum but could not find anything that seemed to address the arguments by Kreeft.

    Since I already read your article and found it very unconvincing, I will not read your book.

    I respect your views as well, especially your decision to step down as a priest. But I honestly do not understand why anyone with the kind of ideas I believe you have (after having read your article), see any point in remaining a catholic. I will give my reasons why i don't understand:

    As a catholic, we believe in the infallible magisterium and the Tradition. That is what distinguish us from any protestant denomination.

    The pope and the inquisition (the congregation of the fath) has stated that women priestesses is not possible. (The rest of my line of reasoning is based on the assumption that this was actually an expression of the authority held by the pope, as he and the inquisition claims, and as I believe seems highly plausible, not to say completely convincing).

    If you are right and the church has been wrong, then the claim of infallibility is invalid and then it is little point in remaining a catholic...

    But suppose you are wrong and the church are and have been right, then either of two possibiliies can occure. Either the church is changed and women priests are allowed. Then again, the magisterium must be fallible, since it has changed in this matter...

    OR, if the magisterium is TRULY infallible (as I believe) then the church will never change, and your fight is not only fruitless but contra productive.

    In either of these three cases, I can see no point for you to remain in the church. As for myself, I can only justify my own belonging to the church by my belief that the churchs magisterium is in fact infallible.

    God bless!

  • 26 november, 2007 10:27 sa Anonymous Anonym

    E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.

    Infallibility (of the Church of Rome)

    is the doctrine that the Church of Rome cannot at any time cease to be orthodox in her doctrine, and that what she declares ex cathedrâ is substantially true. The doctrine is based on the Divine promise to the disciples, “Howbeit when the Spirit of Truth is come, he will guide you into all truth” (John xvi. 13). 1
    The dogma of the “Infallibility of the Pope” was decreed by the Vatican Council in 1870.

    BUT : how is it possible that Rome does and did change about many things? For example: married priests for a thiusands years, then Rome changes its mind; declaration of certain individuals as heretics, then changed its mind; insistence that the earth is the centre and the sun turns around it, then changed its mind;
    An infallible teaching by a pope or ecumenical council can contradict previous Church teachings, as long as they were not themselves taught infallibly. In this case, the previous fallible teachings are immediately made void. Of course, an infallible teaching cannot contradict a previous infallible teaching, including the infallible teachings of the Holy Bible or Holy Tradition. Also, due to the sensus fidelium, an infallible teaching cannot be subsequently contradicted by the Catholic Church, even if that subsequent teaching is in itself fallible.

    from Wikipedia.

  • 26 november, 2007 10:32 sa Anonymous Anonym

    Responses to Rome - papal infallibility and women's ordination - Cover Story
    Commonweal, Jan 26, 1996 by Elizabeth A. Johnson, Michael Novak, Lisa Sowle Cahill, Joseph A. Komonchak, Margaret
    Thanks to the careful, quick work of canon lawyers and theologians, it has become clear that the Vatican's recent Responsum ad dubium is not itself infallible teaching. It has the status of a statement of a Vatican congregation, no more, no less. Yet the confusing use of infallibility makes equally clear that Rome is determined to close the question of women's ordination as it is maturing in the church.

    Consulting the faithful on the matter of this doctrine would yield a different outcome, for interesting combinations of women's giftedness in ministry, pastoral need, and a deep sense of the injustice of exclusion lead many in the church to entertain the possibility of this development. Instead of working patiently and wisely with the question, however, institutional leadership short-circuits what may well be a God-intended development of doctrine and tries to impose its answer by authoritarian fiat.

    Related Results
    Infallibility I & II - papal...
    Infallibility may be answer,...
    Theologians now face...
    I get the impression that the recourse to sheer power is happening because those who oppose women's ordination are losing the argument on the field of reasoning. These reasons are basically three: the example of Jesus, unbroken tradition, and the need for iconic resemblance.

  • 26 november, 2007 10:43 sa Anonymous Anonym

    Imperial Control Over the Papacy

    On a few occasions, the Emperor alone controlled the outcome of the papal election based upon who would be the most advantageous to his own political position without regard for the church. For example, in the year 964, Benedict V was elected pope by the cardinals, while at the same time, the Emperor imposed his own pope -- Leo VIII. However, Benedict was recognized as the true pope by the Roman church and the people. Infuriated, the Emperor dispatched his army to besiege Rome. Benedict eventually gave in, admitting that he had been in error to assume the position of pope against the Emperor's wishes, and consented to deposition.(4) The question must therefore be asked: Who was really controlling the elections of the papacy -- the Holy Spirit through the cardinals, or the Emperor?
    Another good example of emperical control over papal selection is found in the following: After the death of Innocent V in 1276, the cardinals had a difficult time finding a successor, for every proposal they made was immediately rejected by the Emperor. In accordance with the regulations set forth by Gregory X, which ordered cardinals to be kept in isolation until a pope had been chosen, the cardinals were locked up by Charles of Anjou, the senator of Rome. After eight days of seclusion, still having produced no pope, their food supply was order to be reduced to bread and water. Finally, having learned that the Emperor favored Cardinal Ottoboni, the cardinals unanimously elected him and designated him Hadrian V.(5) Once again, the ultimate control of the papacy appears to have rested in the hands of the secular government, not the church.

  • 26 november, 2007 10:44 sa Anonymous Anonym

    It is interesting to note here that the Roman church maintains that the Holy Spirit oversees the election and protects the purity and integrity of the papal office. Yet, at the same time, each cardinal claims to arrive at his decision by divine inspiration and guidance as well. Based upon the information presented here, the only logical conclusion to be drawn is that God deliberately misinforms men as to His will for the occupancy of the Holy See of Rome. However, since God cannot lie (Titus 1:2), nor can He deceive (Isaiah 53:9), to claim that this power-greedy electoral process is designed and directed by the Holy Spirit is beyond reason. An inquiry into the historical events connected with some of the papal elections will further substantiate this point.

    Schism and Multiple Popes

    Documented in official Roman chronicles are many occasions in which several men at the same time claimed to be the legitimate pope. The following is an account of one such instance (1378-1415), when there were as many as three popes.
    The trouble began when Urban VI was unanimously elected by the cardinals, but was rejected by the public. At first, widespread rioting broke out, which frightened the cardinals. Then Urban became unpopular with his own cardinals when he tried to start a reformation. Within six months, the cardinals had declared Urban's election invalid, and had elected Clement VII to replace him as pope.
    Failing to take Rome from Urban, Clement retired to Avignon, France. Most of Italy, England, Poland, and Hungary remained loyal to Urban, while France, Scotland, Naples, and the Spanish kingdoms supported Clement. Each claimant excommunicated the other and his supporters

  • 26 november, 2007 10:45 sa Anonymous Anonym

    An Historical and Scriptural Analysis of Papal Infallibility
    by Greg Loren Durand and Eric Tuttobene
    Copyright © 1989-2005


    Chapter Two
    Papal Error and Lawlessness

    Historical Evidence of Papal Error

    Keeping in mind the confidence of the papacy in its alleged inability to teach erroneous doctrine, it is interesting to note that Rome nevertheless admits that, over the years, many errors have nevertheless occurred. For instance, in the 1960s, Paul VI "de-canonized" over three hundred saints, declaring them to be fraudulent and not to be prayed to. One such example was Saint Christopher, who was supposed to have carried the Christ child. Since Christopher is a Greek name, the question was raised: What was a Greek doing in a Jewish city in the first place? Because of this realization, Christopher was, as were many others, stripped of his holy title. Can we not therefore conclude that for centuries, the Roman church was guilty of promoting idolatry in the form of prayer to false saints?
    During the years of the Inquisition, many were tortured and put to death for the "blasphemous sin" of eating meat on Friday. One of the official pronouncements of Vatican II (1962-1965), however, was that it was no longer considered a sin against God to eat meat on Friay, although voluntary abstinence was suggested as a personal sacrifice. In this case, the papacy's error is inexcusable, for it was one that cost many innocent men their lives. Pope John Paul II went so far as to declare the Inquisition the "greatest error in Church history."
    Historical instances of obvious papal fallibility, such as those above, are available in abundance. Victor I (189-199) first approved of Montanism in 192, and then later condemned it. Honorius (625-638) taught the heresy of Monothelism, which denied that Christ simultaneously possessed two separate natures -- human and divine. He was later condemned as a heretic by the Third Council of Constantinople in 680. Marcellinus (296-304) entered the Temple of Vesta and offered incense to the pagan goddess. Liberius (352-366) consented to the condemnation of Athanasius, the "great defender of the Deity of Christ," and made a profession of Arianism that he might be recalled from exile and reinstated in his seat.
    In 1431, Eugene IV (1431-1447) declared Joan of Arc guilty of practicing witchcraft and condemned her to be burned at the stake. In 1919, however, Benedict XV (1914-1922) canonized her as a saint. In 1633, the astronomer Galileo was brought to trial by the Jesuits for claiming that the earth and all the other planets revolved around the sun. An earlier papal decree entitled De Revolutionibus had denounced the heliocentric view as heretical and "utterly contrary to the Holy Scriptures."(1) Galileo's claims were consequently condemned as heretical and dangerous, and he was tortured and imprisoned.
    Gregory I (590) declared that anyone who believed it was not necessary to take both the bread and wine at Mass was to be excommunicated; Innocent III (1215) stated that anyone who believed it was necessary was to be excommunicated. Paschal II (1099-1118) and Eugene III (1145-1153) authorized dueling; Julius II (1503-1513) and Pius VII (1800=1823) forbade it. Hadrian II (867-872) declared civil marriages to be valid; Pius VII condemned them. Sixtus V (1585-1590) published an edition of the Bible and recommended it to be read; Pius VII condemned the reading of it, claiming the edition to be full of errors. Clement XIV (1769-1774) abolished the order of the Jesuits; Paul

  • 26 november, 2007 10:46 sa Anonymous Anonym

    Historical Evidence of Papal Lawlessness

    In addition to having erred, many popes have exhibited gross lawlessness as well. One such example was John XII (955-964), whom The Catholic Encyclopedia described as "a course, immoral man, whose life was such that the Lateran was spoken of as a brothel, and the moral corruption in Rome became the subject of general odium...."(3) John was accused of sacrilege, perjury, murder, adultery, and incest, and, on one occasion in particular, was summoned by a synod of fifty Italian and German bishops to undergo deposition. Refusing to appear before the council, he threatened his opponents with excommunication should a new pope be elected to replace him. John XII finally died on 14 May 964 -- eight days after he had been stricken by paralysis in the very act of committing adultery. One of his contemporaries summarized his life with these words: "No honest lady dared to show herself in public, for Pope John had no respect for single girls, married women, or widows -- they were sure to be defiled by him, even on the tombs of the holy apostles, Peter and Paul."(4)
    "Simony," or the "act of buying and selling of the papacy," also became a serious problem. Benedict VIII (1012-1024) purchased the office of pope with open bribery. His successor, John XIX (1025-1032), who was a mere layman, likewise obtained his papal position through monetary means, dishonestly passing through all the clerical orders in a single day. Benedict IX (1033-1045) was thereafter made pope through a bargain with the most powerful families in Rome. Clement II was finally directly appointed by King Henry III because, according to one source, "no Roman clergyman could be found who was free of the pollution of simony and fornication."(5)
    In light of such blatant disregard for moral purity in the lives of so many popes, one might wonder whether Romanists are required to obey such lawless leaders
    Infallible Popes Versus the Infallible Word of God

    Whereas history clearly testifies to these and many other instances of papal error, lawlessness, indecisiveness, and general confusion, the Roman church nevertheless maintains its position that the pope is completely infallible in matters regarding faith and morals when speaking ex cathedra, or "from the Chair [of Peter]." He can make no mistakes in official declarations of what must be believed by the body of Romanists at large. The Catholic Encyclopedia makes this point very clear: "The Roman Pontiff, when he speaks ex cathedra -- that is in the exercise of his office as pastor and teacher of all Christians he defines... a doctrine of faith or morals to be held by the whole Church -- is, by reason of the Divine assistance promised to him in blessed Peter, possessed of that infallibility... and consequently such definitions of the Roman Pontiff are irreformable."(7)
    Romanists, like Protestants, claim to receive the Holy Scriptures

  • 26 november, 2007 14:19 sa Blogger Z

    one more question: Who is "Anonymous" above? The one who put in lots of texts?
    Is it John?

  • 26 november, 2007 15:32 sa Anonymous Daniel

    John & others.

    John, thanks for your reply and link.

    Most of you know I am a non-catholic (guess it makes me a protestant... :-) However, I battle somewhat with conflicts between the Word of God (Bible) and the Catholic Tradition.

    I am now beginning to wonder if there aren't conflicts in the Tradition itself.

    "Whereas history clearly testifies to these and many other instances of papal error, lawlessness, indecisiveness, and general confusion, the Roman church nevertheless maintains its position that the pope is completely infallible in matters regarding faith and morals when speaking ex cathedra, or "from the Chair [of Peter]." He can make no mistakes in official declarations of what must be believed by the body of Romanists at large."


  • 26 november, 2007 15:39 sa Anonymous Daniel, again

    John & others:

    I was asked to share this personal testimony on the matter;

    During my years on the missionfield in Mexico together with my oldest sister we had a fierce battle with the Catholic resistance to female leadership, although working in Pentecostal churches with mostly converts.

    When a woman would stand up on the platform to share anything verbally, not neccessarely teaching, a handful of former Catholic men would stand up and leave the church in protest.

    After experiencing this a number of times I was filled with "holy wrath" and asked to share a few words with the congregation.

    - You men that are leaving the building must think women are lower standing creatures than a donkey?

    What do you mean, someone replied...

    - You have accepted that God spoke through the donkey of Bileam in the old testament but he can not use a woman.....


    P.s. Joke aside, I realize of course that this issue is a tough one scriptually. However, in the time ahead we will need all labourers for Christ, men and women, young and old.

  • 26 november, 2007 16:30 sa Blogger ulrich

    Danile, much apprecuiated your posts; why I, a former RC, asked: are women then lesser human beuings? They may be mothers of priests and Jesus but not priests in the patriarchial , hierarchical church?


  • 26 november, 2007 16:32 sa Anonymous Anonym

    no, anonymous is NOT JOhn, he always signs as he has nothing to hide; me a church historian,

    from ZZZZ....

  • 26 november, 2007 16:54 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese

    Dear All,

    It's very interesting to follow this discussion. Haven't had much time to participate myself because of sudden wall paper change and tons of laundry and lots of boxes with books to put back in the bookshelves...

    But now as I start to see some light appearing at the end of the domestic mess tunnel, I hope to contribute a bit more in this thread... :-)

    Thanks John for commenting the other day - I hope you will keep answering to the questions that pop up!

    I enjoy the international level of this discussion. Think I will introduce other topics in English every once in awhile. So we'll get perspectives from all sides of the globe....


  • 26 november, 2007 16:57 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    I appreciate your postings!

    But would you please consider to use a nick name so we don't mix up the anonymous ones...?

    "Church historian" would do fine, for example.

    Just so we know it's you when you perhaps write at other times, and not someone else.

    It makes it a bit less anonymous - even if we still don't know who you are.


  • 26 november, 2007 18:29 sa Blogger David

    All y'all,

    First time commentarian (is that a word?) so be patient here.

    I'm a retired Episcopal priest in the US, married 30 years, two adult children and a new grandchild. I have an earned doctorate with a specialty in adult education. I grew up RC, spent three years in seminary, but left in my mid 20's. There was so much dissonance between what I was experiencing in my life and what I'd been taught about it all. Enough of that for now.

    In 1977 I served at a large parish in Richmond, VA, along with the first woman ordained in that diocese. She was and is an amazing priest and I remain grateful for the years we worked together. I learned a lot because I was teachable. She suffered a great deal because of her choices: all the early Episcopal women did. Some made the choice to be ordained for the wrong reasons. . .so did a lot of males. I wouldn't have missed my time with Pat for anything. But it upset the old boys' club big time. And many still haven't recovered.

    The Roman Church, for all its good deeds, suffers from a bad case of self importance. In the world of alcoholic addiction, people talk about the "elephants" in the room. By that they mean huge, invisible shapes that take up huge amounts of energy. They are dark and never discussed. The whole ongoing sexual abuse issue is one of them. Nobody wanted to talk about it. And they didn't. And things went on in darkness because the hierarchy didn't want to pull curtain back on the Wizard of Oz.

    They could have done something about it years ago but were afraid to tell the truth. The truth has nothing to do with infallibility. Infallibility is just a religious manipulative tool that casts another negative spell over the search for truth. It takes away my personal authority by creating a climate of fear.. ."What if I'm wrong?" Well, either you grow up and admit it or shrink back into some myth about an eternal fire in the afterlife. TV evangelists are cut from the same cloth. They just do it differently. It's all about power and invisible elephants that must be kept invisible at all costs.

    One of the spells is that women can't be priests. WHO SAID? Who was afraid of losing control (or property) to women? Who was (is) afraid of sex and intimacy? Is it possible that the whole issue sex and gender and power and authority might be the elephant in the room here? Do we always have to look backward to the flat earth where women were OWNED for our answers to difficult questions? We have the questions to face right now because a deeper obedience summons us now. . .it's called consciousness. . .and it says, What's wrong with this picture? How anyone limit "vocation" ...the very nature of Spirit that blows freely. It is Spirit that is the revelation of Jesus. . .He said so. And he told us not to pay attention to men wear too many fancy clothes. I digress this close to lunch, folks. (That was an attempt at humor [or humour for some of you] for those who never see anything to laugh at in religion.

    Entropy is the word scientists use to describe what happens when a system must change. It's about displacement of energy so that a newer, higher level of integration might be brought about. Is is possible that this is what's happening? Are we setting elephants free and make the Old Boys upset? I think so. And women are only part of the puzzle.

    A quick observation. Notice that one of the writers used one of my favorite words "non-catholic." In the world of power, one uses negative words like that to diminish another's status or choice of faith. "He is NOT like us, dears." By implication, he has no identity that is positive.

    I'm surprised someone hasn't used "non-male" to describe women in the Church. Perhaps they haven't thought about it yet. Or some cunning nun who runs errands in the Vatican, slipped into an office and changed it. Who knows?

    Let the games begin. ..and free the elephants.


  • 27 november, 2007 14:14 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    Thank you for bringing up these important things! They make up the basis of the non-ordination-of-women-tower...

    Yes, I agree, free the elephants...!!!

    And let the pope, and the cardinals and priests, and the nuns and monks, and the laypeople, women and men - be FREE in the Church - as God's beloved and creative, and intelligent, and fully competent and responsible children... Who have tons of things to contribute with if they're just allowed that freedom of expression and creativity...

    By the way, a parenthesis; how I dislike the word "laypeople" - as if it was a second class kind of people - consisting of "non-priests".

    Why not, from now on, just call everyone: Church people?

    What you wrote reminds me of how much I long for a Church that is truly CATHOLIC - for EVERYONE!

    Without narrow fences with sharp "needles" (forgot the word) on top of them to hinder people from walking out freely on God's fields, or thick huge stone walls to lock "the others" out, or paragraph books to hit open-minded people in the head with...

    I wish that those extremely narrowminded traditionalists who call themselves "Catholic" would realize what they're doing, and convert to God, and become truly CATHOLIC - all embracing.

    Right now they're, ironically enough, the ones who are the most "non-catholic" of all the Church-people (in all denominations)... And they work hard in every second sentence they write to exclude people from their little so called "Catholic" exclusive Church.

    I guess I strayed a bit off topic...

    Or rather - we're now touching the roots of the whole problem; the unwillingness to let God be the centre, so everything will circle around God, rather than around man made things.

    Converting to such a view on the Church may one day free what is now unjustly bound!

    Feel free, everyone, to comment this and everything else that has been written here in this thread...


  • 27 november, 2007 14:16 sa Anonymous Sr. Tracey

    Hot topic, which I cannot respond to at this time, a later date.

    It makes my blood boil.

    I am all for women being ordained. This is just one more of the many isms the church universal rest comfortably in, a place called Denial.

    Sr. Tracey

  • 28 november, 2007 09:09 sa Blogger Z

    This is one of the reasons, i think, that the line "only men can be priests" is not included in the Credo;
    imagine saying that at every Holy Mass: many people would leave the Church, and since the bishops probably didn't want this to happen.....
    ....maybe they somehow felt this line to be even.... a bit....wrong....
    I don't know

  • 28 november, 2007 09:24 sa Blogger ulrich

    I don't quite understand Z's statement about the Credo. The Creeds were put together by Church Councils in the early centuries to counter heretical positions about God, the nature of the three persons of the Trinity, the two natures and two wills of Christ and other essentials of salvific beliefs. Believing in fe/male ordinations and un/married priesthood is not one of them (an essential belief for salvation)but cocnern RC church RULES. The CREDOS are fall ALL churches, or accepoted by all Christians, not just Rome. Monk

  • 28 november, 2007 12:44 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    You wrote:

    >This is one of the reasons, i think, that the line "only men can be priests" is not included in the Credo;

    I don't understand what exactly you're referring to with "this".

    Can you clarify it a little bit, please?

    I for one would not stand hearing it at every Mass...

    But in a way we do both see and hear it every Mass - through the empty space around the altar, consisting of the abscense of women priests, and through the prayers for vocations of (male) priests...

    I know people who left the Church because this abscense became too painful.


  • 28 november, 2007 13:51 sa Blogger john

    Charlotte, thanks, now I understand what Z wrot and it makes sense to me.


  • 28 november, 2007 15:44 sa Blogger Z

    By "this" i meant: what comes out when people debate this issue,
    which i saw looking at all the comments above

    You're right; all classic churches of the world admit the Credo from Nicaea, and the difference between the RC and other churches is probably the Catechesis (don't know the English name for it).
    Maybe you meant that being Catholic means believing in all that the Catechesis is saying

    But still i think:
    1. One must follow one's conscience (while also listening to the Church, of course)

    2. catholic for me is someone who believes in the Credo description of God and celebrates and recognizes the feasts, holidays, saint days, goes to mass and confession + receives all sacraments he/she can.

  • 28 november, 2007 17:22 sa Blogger Z

    .....Forgot the most important thing: the Christening

  • 28 november, 2007 19:03 sa Anonymous Andrew - AOJN

    As regards the whole argument on the basis of 'in persona Christi', and the icon of Christ, as being definitive in ruling out the ordination of women, well, I beg to differ. When a woman is baptised, she doesn’t only act Christ in the sacrament – she becomes Christ, as one of the early Fathers, Cyril of Jerusalem, tells us in his Catechetical Oration lll. If a woman can become Christ in baptism, I cannot see why she cannot so become in the role of a priest celebrating the Eucharist, especially as the eternal Christ is neither male nor female, but is the One who, for all eternity, has been the Second Person in the Trinity.

    Of course, some will say I have no 'locus standi' here, as an Anglican supporter of the ordination of women, even before I experienced the wonderful richness of women's ministry in the church.

    Well, all I can say is that 'the proof of the pudding is indeed in the eating', and that I have had outstanding pastoral and spiritual support and insight from women priests in my church, and in both my last and present parishes.

    Small wonder, then, that I am also an Associate member of the Order of Julian of Norwich, for Julian's vision and Julian's teaching are so very profoundly supportive of the spiritual needs and circumstances of this present age.

    Yours in Christ, and in the spirit of Mother Julian

  • 28 november, 2007 19:10 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    Thanks for the clarification!


  • 28 november, 2007 19:27 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    Good point - the baptism!

    I've written about this somewhere too, don't remember where now.

    This gets us to the real basics.

    If women can be baptised into Christ, and eat the body and drink the blood of Christ, and be saved by Christ - then there's nothing there that could exclude women from serving - in Christ.

    If all the other sacraments make women share fully in the body of Christ - there's no logic at all in keeping women away from just one sacrament - saying it should be reserved only for men, and that God (!) would want that. That sounds like sheer man-made stupidity... (I would put man in cursive or bold letters here if it was possible.)

    Thank you especially for the reference to the Church father, as many use the Church fathers in their argumentation to exclude women from ministry...

    I also love to see that there are people here from the whole body of Christ!

    And I thus get very much tempted to make a paraphrase, so I'll follow that "holy" temptation:

    "in this blog no one is any longer protestant, anglican, catholic or orthodox, woman or man - we'e ONE body in Christ".

    Thanks also for referring to Julian - I will bring her up in another blog posting later on! She deserves a closer look!


  • 29 november, 2007 18:07 sa Blogger Rea

    Thank you for sharing your blogspot with me, Charlotte. It is interesting, and very good to see the vigorous discussion.

    One of the things that concerns me as a believer, is the human tendency to be rather literalist when reading the Bible. Another tendency among certain Catholics is a compulsion to believe, quite literally, in the infallibilty of the pope and the "magisterium" which, I take to refer to the hieararchy.

    The resistance to educating one's self about where modern biblical studies has taken theological scholarship is a serious problem in Roman Catholicism and certainly, in other, more fundamentalist religious traditions. It is as if those who resist education fear that their entire basis for belief in God will be utterly destroyed if any rung in the ladder of their list of certitudes is discovered to be rotten.

    This is a faith born of anxiety,of a deeply rooted fear that the foundations of one's very existence may fall into rubble. This seems to be a deeply rooted part of so many bishops' and Catholics' resistance to the idea of ordaining women. Fundamental to that fear is a very harsh view of human sexuality especially regarding women.

    For those living with such fears, may I suggest that there is a great deal of freedom that comes with accepting Jesus' core message: God is love and we are to love one another, as God's own children.

    How we manifest God's love is certainly a matter for discussion; but there can be no question that the core of it all is Love. When we truly comprehend God's love, there comes a deep serenity.

    God is clearly calling women and married men, for that matter, to serve the church at the base level. We have superbly trained men and women who could serve as priests with great integrity to the multitudes.

    Never has the church suffered so much from the failure of a few to comprehend the "signs of the times." They would rather close churches than ordain women. Their fear and resistance is not of God.

  • 29 november, 2007 18:52 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese


    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Very well put...!

    How I wish that those who are so afraid of change would see this...


  • 29 november, 2007 19:23 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese

    This present discussion here in the blog may continue as long as anyone has some more input...

    So feel free to share whatever you get to think of - it's very interesting to read what you all have to say - from all the corners of the world!

    Below is information from a newsletter to all those who are interested in this question - about an online congress that will start in January 2008.

    (You may read about it in Swedish too in a new posting in my blog today.)


    "Mulieris Dignitatem closed the door so firmly on the possibility of women’s ordination in 1988, that it is highly unlikely that its 20th jubilee conference [in February, in the Vatican] will review the decision. It would be a great surprise if the conference were to re-examine the question of women priests (or even deacons), even though, during the 20 years since the encyclical was written, in every developed country in the world, the role of woman has been transformed.

    For this reason, in 2008, womenpriests.org will organize a simultaneous online conference, allowing theologians around the world to shine the light of current theological thinking on the encyclical and onto the validity of Pope John Paul’s conclusions about the ordination of women.


  • 30 november, 2007 05:01 sa Blogger john

    Rea, very interesting and thoughtful post covering many areas, thanks.

    What you said about the Bible I wonder if you know the works of Sister Joan Chittister, RC Benedictine nun, and that of Marcus Borg. If you Google you will see them, some of Marcus' works available as videod talks online.

  • 04 december, 2007 10:16 sa Blogger Z

    They say that humans are created as an 'eikon' (representation) of God. The priest represents Jesus during the Holy Mass

    My question is:

    Are women less representative of God (Jesus is God) than men?

  • 04 december, 2007 11:19 sa Anonymous monkagain

    Dea Z,

    that phrase you wrote sums up the whole issue cocnerning the ordination of women by Rome. I write by Rome as it is not a problem for any other western church denominations anymore.

    Are women in any way lesser or second class human beings? Is it because of their physiology, that they do not have maile genitals? Because of their assumed different brain functions and/or structure? Some women reveal the 'more masculine' operations of the brain (rational, logical etc), while some men reveal the 'more feminine' functions (sensitive, creative, gentle, etc). Some women are physically tough and strong (look at some athletes), while some men are physically small,and weaker. Whate xactly are the differences between men and women that are being emphasized by those againts women's ordination? Some female athletes are not allowed to compete as women because their bio-chemical make-up is considered to be male. Could they therefore be considered sufficiently male so as to be ordained?
    I do not personally say the the brains of men and women function differently, but that is what is alleged by certain scientific investigations. And I am merely asking questions here and agree wiht wht you wrote.

    John ( a monk)

  • 04 december, 2007 12:09 sa Blogger Z

    John, thanks for writing about these questions

    Now, i don't usually debate the issue outside the internet world, but people who know me know where i stand which often makes them asking me questions.

    Some folks ask why i call myself a catholic when i don't agree with absolutely everything that it says:

    I ask them: "What church do you think i should join?"
    (I mean: i practically buy everything else that the pope says.
    There are many more tough issues than just one, between me and lutheran/pentecostal churches)

  • 04 december, 2007 12:24 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese

    Z, John,

    I've often been amazed at the strong reactions whenever I bring up this subject - while other things get almost no comments.

    It's very strange how anyone can ask others to leave the Church because these have another view than themselves on what is actually true.

    While the Church should be eager to search for, and stand up for the truth.

    What we see today in the Catholic part of the Church simply can't be God's will - since the "god" who inspires to such weird imagery about women has absolutely nothing to do with Jesus and the God of the Bible, or with the early Church history - where we see equality in service in a way we don't have today.

    Did God change his/her mind after a couple of hundred years - and even more after thousand years?

    Or is God the same today?

    If so - there is no reason to exclude women from service in the way it's done today.

    That's a shame. In the same way as the crusades. This is like a crusade against women - within the Church - by using tricky means to cover the discrimination. It's very often covered up by putting women on piedestals. Exemplary women. Nuns. And mothers of ten or more children.

    But other women with different calls than those have no place where their gifts are used in the way God intended.


  • 04 december, 2007 12:26 sa Blogger Charlotte Therese

    Dear All,

    My computer crasched last week, so I'm busy trying to fix it at the moment.

    But I check in here every now and then to read what you say...

    I also asked John W. to have a look at all your questions - hopefully he'll be able to post more answers here soon.

    Meanwhile, the discussion may go on like now....


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