Thursday, March 31, 2011

Roy Bourgeois' Priesthood Can Never Truly End: by Jamie L. Manson/ NCR "He won a purple heart for his service in Vietnam. He lived and worked among the poor in Bolivia for five years... ..."Bourgeois was first called to speak prophetically about the ordination of women when his long time friend and fellow activist, Janice Sevre-Duszynska, decided to pursue her life-long call to ordination through the Roman Catholic Womenpriests. Bourgeois not only attended the 2008 ordination ceremony in Lexington, KY, he also offered the homily. From that moment, Bourgeois began asking publicly the questions that dwell in the minds of the majority of Catholics in this country. "We state that the call to be a priest is a gift and comes from God. How can we as men say our call from God is authentic, but your call as women is not? Who are we to reject God’s call of women to the priesthood?" he asked in an interview with NCR yesterday "The Vatican sent him a letter that following November, giving him 30 days to recant his position on women’s ordination or face automatic excommunication..." "The hierarchy acts as though it has the power to reject and invalidate the vocations of Bourgeois and all of the women denied the opportunity to function as priests. They forget, however, that the calling, and the holiness that flows from it, comes from God alone. Those who are truly called by God can never be prevented from touching the lives and transforming the hearts of God’s people. Regardless of the actions of the Vatican and the decision of the Maryknoll community, Roy Bourgeois’s courage, his integrity, his humility, and his many sacrifices will continue to be a sacramental sign for us all." [Jamie L. Manson received her Master of Divinity degree from Yale Divinity School where she studied Catholic theology and sexual ethics. Her columns for NCR earned her a first prize Catholic Press Association award for Best Column/Regular Commentary in 2010.]

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