Saturday, November 20, 2010
"Open Letter To Each Newly Appointed Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church" /Why are there no women cardinals?
From: Woman’s Ordination Worldwide
We are representatives of a network of organizations whose aim it is to see women and men sharing fully together in all ordained ministries within our Roman Catholic Church. On their behalf we congratulate you on your elevation to the position of Cardinal. We respect and celebrate your service, past and present, to the
We ask you to consider our distressing situation. As your names were announced, His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, stated that “the list of new cardinals reflects the universality of the Church, as they come from various parts of the world and carry out different tasks." Sadly, we cannot share that view. We fail to see the universality of the Church reflected in a College of Cardinals which does not include the name of a single woman, as women constitute half the baptized members of the Church. Surely women and men together form the universality of the Church?
Without women among your number, you will struggle in the modern world to complete the task which the Holy Father has set before you “of assisting the Successor of the Apostle Peter in accomplishing his mission of perpetual and visible source and foundation of unity of the faith and communion in the Church”. Without women in formal roles of authority the Church is incomplete and damaged.
As advisor to the Holy Father, in your function as Cardinal, we hope and pray that you can and will work towards ending this invisibility of women at the highest levels of the church. We call upon the intercession of Mary, blessed Mother of God, to assist you in this task.
Yours in Christ,
Erin Saiz Hanna
Mary Ann M. Schoettly
Pope creates 24 new cardinals amid cheers
By NICOLE WINFIELD
"This is the third time Benedict has held a consistory to create new cardinals. With Saturday's additions, he will have hand-picked 40 percent of the college, infusing it with conservative, tradition-minded prelates like himself and almost ensuring that a future pope will carry on the path he has set out for the church.
During a day of reflection on Friday, cardinals new and old discussed some of the most pressing issues of concern to the church, including the sex abuse scandal."
Bridget Mary's Reflection:
If women are created as equals, and the church teaches that baptism makes us equal, then why are women excluded from the most important leadership positions in the Roman Catholic Church? The answer is men can receive seven sacraments and women can receive six sacraments. Church law ties ordination and decision-making in the church. Catholics worldwide should stand up to gender apatheid. Pope Benedic,t united with the whole church, including the new 42 cardinals should follow Jesus' example who chose women as disciples and equals, and who chose Mary of Magdala to be the first witness to the Resurrection and as the apostle to the apostles. St. Paul praised the woman apostle Junia in Roman 16. There is a depiction of Episcopa (bishop)Theodora in St. Praxeids Church. According to the Old Irish Life of St. Brigit, she was ordained a bishop. Historians tell us that for twelve hundred years women were ordained. One wonders why the institutional church in the 21st century still treats women as second class citizens. The new cardinals should advise Pope Benedict to reclaim our ancient heritage of women in ordained ministry serving the people of God. Roman Catholic Women Priests are leading the way to a renewed priestly ministry in a community of equals. Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP, email@example.com
Friday, November 19, 2010
Barney ZwartzNovember 19, 2010
"GREG Reynolds is grateful that heretics are no longer burnt at the stake. But the Catholic parish priest at Western Port knows that he will be dismissed after this article because Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart has told him so."
"Father Reynolds, 57, delivered a homily in his three parish churches two months ago saying it was God's will for the church to have women priests and that, by refusing them, the church was obstructing the work of the Holy Spirit."
''I am convinced in my heart that it is God's will that we should have women priests … I feel prompted by the Holy Spirit to share my position publicly, and yet very reluctantly,'' the sermon said."
''I believe certain women are being called by God to the ministerial priesthood, and our official church is obstructing the work of the Holy Spirit. I feel I can no longer sit back and remain silent.''
Bridget Mary's Reflection
Kudos to you, Fr. Greg Reynolds for your courage in taking a public stance for women priests. You are certainly not afraid of a crack of a crozier!
My Irish cousins work in Australia and they love your wonderful country.
May thousands of your brother priests all over the world join you. Indeed women priests are serving grassroots Catholic communities with enthusiasm and joy. Like Fr Roy Bourgeois and the 300 Irish priests who met in Portlaois, Ireland in September 2010, we are beginning to see male priests affirming equality for women in the church publically. Fr. Roy received an automatic excommunication for his stance. I hope that the women of Australia rise up and say "yes" to serving God in a renewed priestly ministry.
God is calling women to serve as priests, who are the hierarchy or Vatican to stand in the way! Onward! Bridget Mary Meehan, firstname.lastname@example.org
George Weigel " bluntly reminded the media that the pope is not a monarch, the bishops are not "branch managers," that he can appoint them but, realistically, he can't dump them for incompetence or malfeasance."
Weigel's answers: "The Vatican communications debacle has to end" and the Church must find away to dump bad bishops, which he called
...the single biggest management problem in the church today... and the single biggest fix that can affect the life of the Church.
John Allen's, who has covered the Vatican for the National Catholic Reporter, believes: "The papacy is adrift and has been for a long time...(It is) a papacy defined by its train wrecks."
"Allen quoted a favorite Italian newspaper headline printed after the Vatican took 19 days to debunk a false rumor: "The Vatican denies everything. No one believes it.'"
Bridget Mary's Reflection:
True words, indeed, from Vatican observer John Allen, Benedict's papacy has been defined by its "train wrecks". It is not just about the Vatican's faulty communications with the media, Better PR is not going to solve the Vatican's crisis. Immediate structural reform is needed. Nor can we wait t for a few hundred years until the Curia gets it.. The Curia needs to deal with the sex abuse crisis now, no more blaming the devil roaming the Vatican's halls or the media for covering the world wide debacle. It is time to open the windows again and put in place new structures of accountability and new leadership including women and men who will bring reform to our beloved church Remove the bishops who covered-up criminal sexual abuse. Drain the swamp. Catholics need a renewed priestly ministry now, including women priests, in a people-empowered, more accountable and transparent, church.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
..."The churches are called ecclesias, the word derived from the Greek verb for “calling together.” Five were started last year in the Netherlands by Catholics who broke away from their existing parishes, and more are being planned, said Franck Ploum, who helped start an ecclesia in January in Breda, the Netherlands, and is organizing a network conference for the groups in the two countries."
"At this sturdy brick church southwest of Brussels, men and women are trained as “conductors.” They preside over Masses and the landmarks of life: weddings and baptisms, funerals and last rites. Church members took charge more than a year ago when their pastor retired without a successor. In Belgium, about two-thirds of clergymen are over 55, and one-third older then 65."
..."Yet they appear to be on a collision course with the Vatican and the Catholic Church in Belgium. The Belgian church has been staggering from a sexual abuse scandal with 475 victims, and the resignation of the bishop of Bruges, Roger Vangheluwe, who last April admitted to years of molesting a boy who turned out to be his nephew."
Bridget Mary's Reflection:
It seems like more and more Catholics today are on a collision course with the Vatican. Yet at the same time, new hope for a more vibrant Catholic Church is blossoming in grassroots communities. Kudos to Belgium Catholics leading the way. The Vatican cannot control the movement of the Holy Spirit in the church. Let us pray that more courageous women and men in parishes who do not have a resident priest will either call forth women priests or married male priests or go ahead and celebrate Eucharist themselves, knowing that the Holy One is in their midst when two or three are gathered together in God's name
Bridget Mary Meehan, email@example.com
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Donna Quinn, OP (708-974-4220)
Beth Rindler, SFP (313-891-2192)
Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York was elected president
of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops at a
meeting in Baltimore on Tuesday, defeating the conference's
sitting vice president, Gerlad KIcanas of Tucson. It was the
first time since the 1960s that a vice president was on the
ballot for president and lost, the Associated Press reported.
Archbishop Dolan, who was notably omitted from a list of
newly elevated cardinals last month, won 54 percent of the
vote to 46 percent for Bishop Kicanas in the third round of
It was 2003, and the priest had opined to a reporter that women should be ordained. Faraway bishops rumbled about censure. Then he picked up the telephone and heard the baritone of Milwaukee’s archbishop, Timothy M. Dolan. Father Cooper immediately offered to resign.
No, no, the archbishop replied, we just need to repair the damage. “He was very pastoral and caring,” Father Cooper recalled.
And how was it resolved? “Oh, I agreed to recant,” he said. “He effectively silenced me.”
Bridget Mary's Reflection:
When I was a pastoral associate working at Ft. Myer Chapel in the 80's and 90's , I invited Timothy Dolan to speak to our RCIA . He was working as a secretary in the Vatican Embassy. He invited our community to come to the Embassy for a tour and a continental breakfast. He impressed me as a warm and friendly priest , who was open to questions and who loved to talk and joke with people. We enjoyed our tour and his gracious hospitality.
Archbishop Dolan is conservative and a company man. He follows the Vatican line on women's ordination. But, if the Pope changed and opened the doors to women priests, I think Archbishop Dolan would follow the pope's example and ordain women.
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Left to right back row: Bridget Mary Meehan, Katy Zatsick, Judy Lee, Elly Marinaro, Miriam Picconi, Dena O'Callaghan Diane Dougherty, (in black top)
Kneeling in front: Joan Throm and Wanda Russell.
"Diane Dougherty pushes to allow women to be deacons"
By Mark Davis
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"Diane Dougherty lives in a neat, white house that she shares with her cats, Pete and Gypsy Rose. She teaches second grade in Fayetteville. She smiles a lot, her eyes flashing with intellect.
"She hardly looks like someone flouting centuries of tradition, challenging the Roman Catholic Church."Dougherty, 65, wants to be a deacon...."
...."Bridget Mary Meehan of Falls Church, Va., whom the Womenpriests organization has identified as a bishop," (said )
"Like (Rosa) Parks, “we know we are disobeying an unjust law,” said Meehan, 62, who plans to conduct Dougherty’s ordination ceremony. “One must always disobey an unjust law.”...
"Archdiocese shelves local Mass for Gays"/Roman Catholic Womenpriests Communities Welcome All To Celebrate Eucharist
By Abe Levy - Express-News
Web Posted: 10/23/2010 12:00 AM CDT
Read Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Cantú's letter: http://www2.mysanantonio.com/PDFs/20101022_CantuLetter.pdf
Read Dignity's response: http://www2.mysanantonio.com/PDFs/GayCatholicsletter.pdf
"San Antonio Catholic leaders have discontinued a long-standing Mass that was offered quietly for more than 15 years to the gay and lesbian community at a near-downtown parish.The weekly Mass at St. Ann Catholic Church was the subject of periodic complaints to the archdiocese. But until last Sunday, the local hierarchy declined to shut it down. It had been conducted by a handful of local priests sympathetic to the gay and lesbian community."
"The decision was made by Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Cantú, who's the interim head of the archdiocese until Chicago Bishop Gustavo García-Siller becomes the new archbishop of San Antonio on Nov. 23."
Bridget Mary's Reflection:
This is another example of the hierarchy's exclusion that is contrary to the spirit of Jesus in the Gospels. Jesus proclaimed that we are all God's chosen people, we are all sisters and brothers in the human family. This includes gays and lesbians, of course. The decision by the hierarchy to prohibit Dignity Masses does not reflect Jesus' embrace of all God's chosen people. I applaud Dignity's decision to continue their liturgies in a supportive church. Jesus reminds us that it does not matter where we worship as long as we worship in spirit and truth.
The Roman Catholic male bishops should ask themselves, what would Jesus do, and do it-- welcome all to the Sacred Banquet. Our Roman Catholic Womenpriests communities welcome all to celebrate Eucharist. No one is excluded. Our mission in life is to love and serve one another in the heart of God. Bridget Mary Meehan, firstname.lastname@example.org