Sunday, January 2, 2022

The "Roman Catholic Church Would Rather Die than Accept Women as Equals" by Patricia Garry- Response by Jeni Marcus ARCWP

Seven men were ordained by Archdiocese of Cincinnati in May 15, 2021.
(photo: Catholic Telegraph)

It has been clear for quite a while, but it really crystallized for me when the Archdiocese of Cincinnati announced that in this big archdiocese, reaching way up into northern Ohio, the church is consolidating down from parishes to families of parishes, called Beacons of Light. There have been several big Enquirer stories about this. 

And, of course, they did it the way the church has always done everything – by fiat, by announcement, telling folks about how wonderful it will be. "They" even exclaimed piously that it is the shortage of priests bringing about this shrinkage.

What is really bringing about this drastic change is quite simple – it is the Catholic Church’s misogyny; its hatred and fear of women – that has created this need. (The other side of that story is that fewer and fewer men want to be priests, even with all the perks that come with the "job.")

Historically, Christ was not afraid of women. He had women friends, women supporters, women he consoled and woman who consoled him. There were women among the Apostles, especially Mary Magdalene. There were women bishops in the early centuries of the church. Lots of this information is available, but not widely known. 

Christ did not cut off half of those working to grow the church in the early days and neither did the early church leaders, many of whom were women. Celibacy was not mandated by the church until the 12th century – and that was because the sons of priests wanted their inheritances, and threatened the growing financial and political power of the European church in the middle ages. And the popes needed their money to build those enormous edifices across that continent, and to support their often decadent lifestyles. Many were as wealthy and as powerful as kings. (The Knights Templar were destroyed because their wealth was coveted by those kings and popes.)..."

Jeni Marcus ARCWP:  Response

"It begs the question: do we really need an institutional church with its sexism, hypocrisy, clericalism, oppressive and discriminatory rules? Throughout the ages it certainly proved not to be the foundation of morality, justice and ethics. I submit, there are enough educated people to teach and carry out the work of scripture and the gospel message of Christ. Fundamentally, it's always been the "Faithful": the "People of God... the Body of Christ" who are the church, not the the structural edifice and institution. 

In any case, and at the minimum, this calls for the destruction of the institution in its present form with it finally being rebuilt by the People of God harkening back to its early root beginnings. It goes without saying that process should take place without the involvement of the Vatican or its clerical minions who will undoubtedly for their self serving and self preservation reasons be an impediment to this objective.

The Roman Catholic Women Priests Movement, which began in 2002 with the ordination of seven women on the Danube, ordains women in a renewed model  of inclusive ministry in people empowered grassroots Catholic communities where all are equals and partners in living the gospel, celebrating sacraments and are called to live the values and mission of Jesus in the 21st century. 

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