Dougherty on Oct. 20 will be ordained a priest in the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests (ARCWP) at a ceremony at First Metropolitan Community Church in Atlanta. Asked earlier this week at her home near Newnan if the ordination is valid, Dougherty said, “I’m being validly ordained in the line of Peter, but it is not recognized by the church hierarchy.”
The ordination service will be performed by female bishop, Dougherty said. The woman who ordained the bishop had been ordained by a male bishop, though his name has not been released, Dougherty added..."
“We are authentic women living out our gospel call within the Catholic Church. We stand as equals with all clergy through this ordination,” she said. “Sexism is now and always has been divisive. You cannot take half a religious denomination, make them second class, and say this is the will and intent of Jesus. The gospels and experience of the early church clearly indicate women have been called to full discipleship. There is historical and archeological evidence that verified women were priests and deacons for the first 1,200 years of its existence. That is also how long it took to make a hierarchy to say we never existed. Oppressed for the last 800 years, we are now rising up to say once again, we are here, we have been here and we will always be here, because God calls us all to be God’s presence on earth — both male and female.”
Above all, Dougherty insists that she became a religious woman to answer God’s call and served in parishes, schools, archdioceses and other Catholic institutions.
Today is the feast day of St. Teresa of Avila, a great reformer and Doctor of the Church. She'd be proud of our international movement to renew priestly ministry in a more open, inclusive, just church. Bridget Mary Meehan, arcwp