Monday, May 19, 2014

Boston Heights woman to be ordained as priest: Six women to be ordained at Brecksville United Church of Christ

by Tim Troglen |   Boston Heights -- On May 24 Mary Eileen Collingwood will take another step in her journey of faith and service to the Lord.

Collingwood, a deacon with the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests, will be one of six women ordained at 1 p.m. at Brecksville United Church of Christ, 23 Public Square....
Collingwood was ordained as a deacon with ARCWP June 22, 2013.
"As deacon, I have conducted prayer services, funeral services and anointed the sick," Collingwood said. "I have spent my deaconate time in service to others as [and were] needed."
Unlike some mainstream religious organizations, the association of women priests "welcomes all at the table," according to Collingwood.
"No one is ever excluded," she said. "We embrace the disenfranchised in our community - those who find no comfort in the Catholic parishes and live on the margins.
"All are the people of God," she said. "All are welcome at the table as equals."
Collingwood and her husband, Richard, have lived in Boston Heights since 2006 and have seven children. Collingwood has spent her life in church ministry, including graduating seminary with a degree in theology.
An "awakening" led Collingwood to the priesthood, she said.
"I realized that the most repressed people since the beginning of time have been women," Collingwood said. "And I really do love my church, to the point where I'm willing to step out of their roles and policies to live the change that really needs to happen today to bring women into equal positions. It really needs to be done to help make the Church whole."
The Roman Catholic Church is one of the last remaining institutions which does not allow women in roles traditionally filled by men, such as the priesthood, Collingwood said.
More than half the people in the world are women, Collingwood said.
"[But] our policies, both secular and religious, have been totally written by men," Collingwood said. "Women have had no input in our canon law or our pastoral teachings -- even the Bible was written by men..."

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