...."It was in 1976 the Pontifical Biblical Commission released a study examining the exclusion of women from the ministerial priesthood from a biblical perspective, stating: "It does not seem that the New Testament by itself alone will permit us to settle in a clear way and once and for all the problem of the possible accession of women to the presbyterate."
When presented, the few arguments for the ordination ban seem unconvincing to many, resting mainly on past precedents and adverting to vague ideas about gender imagery and complementarity that imply women and men must have different vocations for service in the church. Services that involve total inclusion of authority and total exclusion of authority. This has given us a distinctly two-tier church.
Meanwhile, appeals to constant teaching continue to fall flat. The church has changed its "definitive teachings" repeatedly -- in regard, for example, to liberty of conscience, Jews, the Crusades, slavery, usury and torture, to name a few.
The road to an inclusive church, one in which all are equal, all are blessed, all are called, will not come easily. O'Malley has again affirmed this reality. But distinctions that set people apart, into classes of greater and lesser authority and power, cannot last, cannot withstand increased access by laity, including women, to education, particularly theological education. In the end, the ban will fall because it misreads the teachings of Jesus. "