Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Women's Ordination Statement: "On the Excommunication of Kate Kelly, founder of Ordain Women"

On the excommunication of Kate Kelly, founder of Ordain Women
For immediate release:
(202) 675-1006
Statement from WOC Executive Director, Erin Saiz Hanna

The Women's Ordination Conference (WOC) is deeply saddened by yesterday's announcement that human rights lawyer and founder of the Mormon organization Ordain Women, Kate Kelly, was excommunicated by her church.

WOC stands in solidarity with Kate, the members of Ordain Women, and all those who bravely challenge sexism in religion. This excommunication affects us all. 
Kate followed her conscience and heart when she started Ordain Women, building a groundswell of feminist voices within the Mormon Church. She created a safe space for Mormons to speak freely about gender inequality in their religion and to challenge the sexist traditions that exclude women from ordination simply because of their biology.

As an organization that works for the ordination of women in the Roman Catholic Church, we understand our sisters' pain and longing for dignity, equality and justice in their faith community. We know from experience that the inappropriate use of excommunication as a means to punish those who challenge sexism cannot and will not stop the call for women's equality in our religious institutions.

Only when our religious leaders stop clinging to a culture of male privilege and dialogue with women as equal partners, will they begin to model Jesus' gospel message of justice. Communication, not excommunication, is long overdue.

In closing, Kate, know your Catholic sisters are standing in solidarity beside you.  We are confident that despite this attempt to silence you, the movement you started is unstoppable and on the right side of history. You are in our constant prayers. And in words of the Carolyn McDade song we sang together at our joint 
Equal in Faith gathering, "it may be rocky and it may be rough, but sister, carry on." 

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