Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Roman Catholic Church Should Promote Use of Condoms to Save Women's Lives

"I want to point out that the following statement by the bishop of diocese of Youngstown, OH is yet another of an ongoing plethora of statements from members of various hierarchies around the world assuring us that,the recent musings of Pope Benedict XVI regarding condoms to the contrary nothwithstanding, the Church's hard line on condoms remains cast in concrete - contraception remains immoral, under any circumstances, even though it may may not be the intent in using a condom.

Not one of these prelates has had the courage and integrity to admit that millions of monogamous women in Africa have been needlessly infected by their HIV-positive husbands/partners over the past 2+ decades because John Paul II, on whose watch the AIDS pandemic in sub-Saharan Africa began, and Benedict XVI (upon until now) and their sycophants have failed to tell these HIV-positive men that, if they cannot or are unwilling to refrain from sexual relations with their women, they have a moral obligation to use condoms on a consistent basis - this relying on well-established principles of pastoral moral theology, viz. lesser evil, double effect and the right to self-defense.

Their failure to act as real pastors in this life and death issue for these innocent women, Catholics and many non-Catholics under the care of Catholic Relief Services and Caritas Internationalis, simply reinforces the refusal of many, if not most, African males to use condoms -they demand sex and if a woman refuses a husband’s or partner’s sexual overtures, she risks ostracism, violence, and destitution for herself and her children. Condoms in those real life situations are a "pro-life" strategy. These so-called shepherds continue to fail to protect the women in their flocks and are therefore morally complicit in that horrendous holocaust of suffering and deaths in Africa. Their support of dogmatic orthodoxy over Christ-like orthopraxy is lamentable and pathetic. They have lost their moral capacity to lead and do not deserve our respect. "
by Bill Schuch


Bishop of Diocese of Youngstown, Ohio: The Pope's Comments on Condoms

"International media reports have created a great deal of confusion around Pope Benedict’s recently published remarks with regard to condoms. Some reports have claimed that the Pope is justifying condom use in certain circumstances. Others have accused the Pope of changing Church teaching. A careful reading of his remarks reveals, however, that Pope Benedict neither proposed any change to the teaching of the Church on the immorality of the use of contraceptives, nor does he justify condom use, or characterize their use as a lesser evil. He is, in fact, very clear in the interview that condoms are not either a real or moral solution to the AIDS crisis. Why, then, all of the confusion? Some news reports have taken one sentence from Chapter 11 of the Pope’s book-length interview and given it a broader interpretation than the Pope intended. In this sentence, Pope Benedict states, “There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a male prostitute uses a condom, where this can be a first step in the direction of a moralization, a first assumption of responsibility, on the way toward recovering an awareness that not everything is allowed and that one cannot do whatever one wants.”

"Pope Benedict was not justifying condom use for male prostitutes or for anyone else. Rather he was reflecting on the dawning light of human conscience in a person who lives a sinful lifestyle. In the Pope’s example, even someone whose life is so darkened by sin still has a hope for conversion by reflecting on his actions according to the true inner voice of conscience. Specifically, a prostitute’s use of a condom is not in any way a lesser evil, but rather it is his (or her) desire to reduce the risk of spreading AIDS that may signal a first step in recognizing the human dignity of a sexual partner. In a prostitute’s realization that a deadly disease would not be good for a sexual partner, there is hope that one day he or she will come to see the immorality of that lifestyle and begin to seek the true freedom that is found only in Jesus Christ.I hope this helps to clarify the Holy Father’s remarks."

Bridget Mary's Reflection:
Once again, the hierarchy has no clue that it's teaching does NOT reflect the compassion in the heart of Jesus for all God's people, including women. We must all follow our consciences in moral decisions. Bill Schuch is right on in his message that millions of women have died because of their partners' failures to use condoms to protect them for infection by HIV AIDS. This does not reflect a pro-life stance toward women that our church professes as central to its teaching on the dignity and protection of life from womb to tomb. We should ask ourselves why does the male hierarchy espouse such a double standard and why are women's lives expendable?
Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests
www.associationofromancatholicwomenpriests.org
sofiabmm@aol.com

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Bridget Mary's Blog: TIME Magazine declares Roman Catholic Women Priests Top Story: Rated # 6 -- In Spite of the Vatican

http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2035319_2034971_2034954,00.html

Did the Pope really say "all of Jesus disciples were women?" /A Vision Received?

TIME magazine rated Roman Catholic Women Priests the #6 Top Story.

"The Pope, in an interview published in late November, remained adamant that the Church has no biblical authority to ordain women as priests because all of Jesus' disciples were women. "
Was this a misprint by TIME or does it reflect new thinking or a vision received by the Pope?!!
Perhaps, Pope Benedict is recognizing the vital role women played in the Gospel.
Now let's hope that he makes the connection with the need for the full equality of women in the Catholic Church... as gender justice is a key to non-violence and to empowerment of women throughout our world community.
Here are a few of the prominent women in Jesus' circle of disciples that certainly lay the foundation for gender justice and women priests today.
Mary of Magdala, apostle to the apostles, first witness to encounter the Risen Christ, and called to "go and tell" the followers of Jesus including the Tweleve the Good News of Jesus' resurrection, the core belief of the Christian faith.
Mary Mother of Jesus, faithful disciple who turned the Spirit of God into the Body and Blood of Christ.The Catholic Church has an age-old devotion to Mary as priest. www.womenpriests.org/pafffirm.asp
The Samaritan Woman, who was the first evangelist who brought her whole village to Jesus, demonstrates the esteem that the Johannine community held its women leaders.
The story of the Samaritan woman is the longest conversation between Jesus and anyone in Scripture (John 4:6-42)
Joanna, Susanna and the many women who provided for Jesus out of their resources, and whom scholars believe bank-rolled his ministry.
Martha is remembered for one of the most important proclamations of faith. "I have come to believe that you are the Messiah, God's Only Begotten, the One who is coming into the world." (Jn.11:27) Scholars claim that the table ministry of Martha is associated with eucharistic ministry.
The story of the woman with the hemorrhage reveals a woman's dignity as a person in the face of religious and social discrimination. Jesus repudiates the purification rituals of the law-bound religious structures of all time that discriminate against women.
( If you'd like to read more about biblical women as equals and partners in the Gospel, read my book, Praying with Women of the Bible. available on online retailers such as amazon.com)
Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests
http://www.associationofromancatholicwomenpriests.org/



Monday, December 13, 2010

TIME Magazine declares Roman Catholic Women Priests Top Story: Rated # 6 -- In Spite of the Vatican


"6. Women Priests, In Spite of the Vatican"


By Howard Chua-Eoan


http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2035319_2034971_2034954,00.html

"In July, the Vatican branded the ordination of women as priests a delictum gravius, or grave crime, the same label it has given pedophilia. That may have been in response to the small but increasing number of women who have been ordained priests by rebel Catholic congregations in the U.S. and other parts of the world. For example, Roman Catholic Womenpriests, a group founded eight years ago in Europe, has ordained women in more than 20 American states and Canada. The Pope, in an interview published in late November, remained adamant that the Church has no biblical authority to ordain women as priests because all of Jesus' disciples were women."View the full list for "The Top 10 Everything of 2010"

Bridget Mary's Reflection:
The Vatican is the gift that keeps on giving to Roman Catholic Women Priests! Their opposition has propelled major media coverage and galvinized public support.
It is obvious that Catholics and others believe that the time for the full equality of women in the church is now!
The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests ordain women who are called by God to serve in a renewed priesthood in a community of equals.
Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests
http://www.associationofromancatholicwomenpriests.org/

Historic Ordination of First Latin American Roman Catholic Woman Priest















A diverse community of supporters, including the poor and marginalized from Good Shepherd Community in Ft. Myers, Florida, celebrated the historic ordination of the first Roman Catholic Woman Priest from Latin America. A prominent feminist leader in the ecumenical religious community and a missionary activist, she was ordained by Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan of the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests in Sarasota, Florida on Dec. 11th, 2010.

The newly ordained woman priest was inspired by the religious women who taught her in grade school and high school. She was not only a product of Vatican II and the changes that took place in Latin America, she was an active participant of the Gospel mandate for and church teaching on social justice.As a passionate advocate of gender equality and liberation theology, her life mission has been working with the poor especially women in base communities in cities in Latin America. In addition, she is a member of ecumenical organizations and skilled at working with clergy from various denominations. Her goal has been to empower, educate, and to raise consciousness. "Liberate yourself from the past, even though the church, society and your family may have condemned you. God does not condemn you," the first Latin American woman priest said, "We need to have an ethics of love, not punishment or fear, the sacraments are not pieces of paper but relationships to Spirit." In her ministry to the poor and indigenous she proclaims "we have the blood of Christ." She advocates raising the poor and indigenous people to full equality in the church and in society. In other words, one's ethnic background, social standing, race or religion does not matter. All are one in Christ. This theology is rooted in the first principal statement of Vatican II: "Every form of discrimination against persons, either because of religion, nationality, race or gender, must be overcome and eradicated as contrary to God's intent."

This courageous and prophetic first Roman Catholic Woman Priest believes that women's ordination is a question of justice. Her vision is building up partnership between women and men in Latin America. She follows directly in the footsteps of holy women and men who have embraced Gospel justice in solidarity with the poor and marginalized in Latin America.

Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Dutch Catholic Church Faces 2000 Abuse Complaints

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/10/world/europe/10dutch.html?_r=1&ref=todayspaper

Stephen Castle


BRUSSELS — "The Roman Catholic Church, battered by sexual abuse scandals from the United States to Belgium, is facing a new set of damaging allegations in the Netherlands. Figures released Thursday by an investigative commission showed that almost 2,000 people had made complaints of sexual or physical abuse against the church, in a country with only four million Catholics. "

Cables Show Ireland Irked Vatican on Sovereignty/ Christ is weeping

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2010/12/11/cables-indicate-ireland-ceded-vatican-pressure/
Cables show Ireland irked Vatican on sovereignty

VATICAN CITY – Newly released U.S. diplomatic cables indicate that the Vatican felt "offended" that Ireland failed to respect Holy See "sovereignty" by asking high-ranking churchmen to answer questions from an Irish commission probing decades of sex abuse of minors by clergy.
That the Holy See used its diplomatic-immunity status ...


Bridget Mary's Reflection:
This attitude demonstrates that the Vatican behaves as if it is above the law! How can a church hide under sovereignty? Would any other church get away with this?
This attempt to cover-up sexual abuse resembles the behavior of a crme family, not the church of Jesus Christ. Ask yourself, what would Christ do?
Weep for the children, weep for the lack of truth-telling, weep for betraying our faith.
Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP
www.associationofromancatholicwomenpriests.org

Historic Ordination of First Latin American Roman Catholic Woman Priest

Historic Ordination of First Latin American Roman Catholic Woman Priest
A diverse community of supporters, including the poor and marginalized from Good Shepherd Community in Ft. Myers, Florida, celebrated the historic ordination of the first Roman Catholic Woman Priest from Latin America. A prominent leader in the ecumenical religious community and a missionary activist, she was ordained by Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan of the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests in Sarasota, Florida on Dec. 11th, 2010.
The newly ordained woman priest was inspired by the religious women who taught her in grade school and high school. She was not only a product of Vatican II and the changes that took place in Latin America, she was an active participant of the Gospel mandate for and church teaching on social justice.As a passionate advocate of gender equality and liberation theology, her life mission has been working with the poor especially women in base communities in cities in Latin America. In addition, she is a member of ecumenical organizations and skilled at working with clergy from various denominations. Her goal has been to empower, educate, and to raise consciousness. "Liberate yourself from the past, even though the church, society and your family may have condemned you. God does not condemn you," the first Latin American woman priest said, "We need to have an ethics of love, not punishment or fear, the sacraments are not pieces of paper but relationships to Spirit." In her ministry to the poor and indigenous she proclaims "we have the blood of Christ." She advocates raising the poor and indigenous people to full equality in the church and in society. In other words, one's ethnic background, social standing, race or religion does not matter. All are one in Christ. This theology is rooted in the first principal statement of Vatican II: "Every form of discrimination against persons, either because of religion, nationality, race or gender, must be overcome and eradicated as contrary to God's intent."
This courageous and prophetic first Roman Catholc Woman Priest believes that women's ordination is a question of justice. Her vision is building up partnership between women and men in Latin America. She follows directly in the footsteps of holy women and men who have embraced Gospel justice in solidarity with the poor and marginalized in Latin America.
Bridget Mary Meehan, RCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests
http://www.associationofromancatholicwomenpriests.org/