Thursday, July 28, 2011

“Holy Shakeup: Catholic Clergy and Hierarchy Join Catholics Worldwide in Support of Women Priests”

The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests rejoice in a “holy shakeup” that millions of Catholics worldwide welcome. The good news now is that male priests, bishops, a cardinal as well as theologians have expressed their support of female priests. They are following in the footsteps of Maryknoll Roy Bourgeois whose prophetic call for a dialogue on women priests is being heard in more and more places today in our church.

A new documentary, Pink Smoke Over the Vatican , shares the stories of some of these women who have found a way to serve God’s people as women priests including Janice Sevre-Duszynska who was ordained in Lexington, Kentucky in 2008. Fr. Roy Bourgeois attended, delivered the homily and participated in the ordination rite. This resulted in his excommunication and Vatican attempts to pressure Maryknoll to dismiss him from the Order.

"Nothing can stop the movement of the spirit toward human rights, justice and equality in our world and in our church" said Bridget Mary Meehan, "the full equality of women is the voice of
God in our time."

Here is a list of top church leaders who have joined the wave of enthusiasm for female priests:

---Cardinal Jose da Cruz Policarpo of Lisbon, Portugal has said there's "no fundamental theological obstacle" to the ordination of women as priests in the Catholic Church.

---300 Austrian priests issued a "Call to Disobedience" to promote priesthood for women and married men. The Austrian priests and deacons read aloud a public prayer for "church reform" in every Mass.

---Over 250 German speaking theologians called for end to mandatory celibacy and for women's ordination in the Roman Catholic Church..

---Over 175 Catholic priests have signed on to a letter in support of Maryknoll priest, Fr. Roy Bourgeois, who has been told to recant his support for women's ordination or be removed from the priesthood. The letter that affirms primacy of conscience was delivered, Friday, July 22nd, to Fr. Edward Dougherty, Superior General of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers in Maryknoll, NY.

---Bishop Markus Buchel, bishop of the diocese of St. Gall in Switzerland spoke out openly for women's ordination on Easter Sunday/2011 in an explosive statement in the St. Galler Pfarreiblatt [St. Gall Parish Paper]. He said:: "We must search for steps that lead there," "I could imagine that women's diaconate could be such a step."Regarding priesthood for women, B├╝chel said, "We can pray that the Holy Spirit enables us to read the signs of the times."


--- Bishop William Morris, from Australia, was forced to resign by the Vatican for wanting to discuss married priests and women priests as a possible response to the shortage of priests. The National Council of Priests of Australia released a statement in support of Bishop Morris.

----A male priest co-celebrated the ordination liturgy of Marta Soto, the first woman priest ordained in Latin America.

--- Women priests continue to grow. The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests will ordain 3 women in the first ordinations in Virginia on Sept. 10, 2011. .

-- The Vatican is in free fall. On July 20, 2011, Prime Minister of Ireland, Enda Kenny accused the Vatican of covering up child- sexual abuse allegations against clergy and of "downplaying" the "rape and torture of children" to uphold its reputation and referred to the "dysfunction, disconnection and elitism, the narcissism that dominates the culture of the Vatican to this day.”

Women priests are a holy shakeup that offer a renewed priestly ministry of living the Gospel of justice for all and justice for women in the church! Now our brothers in the Catholic clergy and hierarchy are joining us as companions on the journey.

The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests is in the United States and Latin America.

Visit our website:

Visit Bridget Mary’s Blog for pictures and for news of the women priests movement.

Contact emails:
Janice Sevre-Duszynska


Bridget Mary Meehan-,


Judy Lee,


People of Faith: Challenge Washington to Spare Medicare and Medicaid/Let's Act Now for Faithful Reform

Faith leaders challenge Washington to spare Medicare, Medicaid
The Interfaith Health & Hope Coalition, a local advocate for community health and an active supporter of Faithful Reform, has endorsed Rev. Walling's call to action. Faithful Reform has asserted a "moral obligation" for all faith organizations to get behind the effort to preserve Medicare and Medicaid funding. Faithful Reform recommends that health advocates voice concern by calling a toll-free number 1-888-797-8717. The toll-free number will connect to the Capitol switchboard. At that point callers need to ask for their senators or representative by name. Three calls are needed to reach all three persons. There is not an automatic roll-over to additional offices.

Key points articulated in Faithful Reform's Statement of Principles:

Medicaid provides essential comprehensive health coverage for people with low incomes, the elderly, and people with disabilities.
Medicare is the primary source of health insurance for senior citizens.
All people deserve equal access to quality, affordable, inclusive, and accountable health care.
The social safety net and its key components, including health care, must be maintained to reflect our shared commitment to protecting vulnerable populations.
Concern for the most vulnerable in our community, particularly low-income women, men and children and people with disabilities, is at the heart of our sacred texts and an affirmation of our common humanity.
Caring for our elders and treating them with dignity demonstrates the value we place on our enduring responsibility to enable all persons to live out the fullness of their days.

Bridget Mary's Reflection:

This is a huge social justice issue. Compassion care for the poor and the elderly are the heart of our faith traditions. We must act know to do all we can to help.

It is sad to see politicans push "granny under the train" to save tax hikes for wealthy individuals and corporations who, in some cases, pay nothing in taxes. The heavens cry out for justice for all especially for the poor and vulnerable among us! Yes, we need to raise the debt ceiling, raise taxes on the super rich, and make sensible cuts, not gut Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. Cutting out excessive spending on wars and weapons is important as well as ending congress's own pork barrell projects. Let's start there. How about a salary trim and a decrease in benefits for congress representatives?

It is time for Americans to take action and let our elected leaders know they are here to serve all the people, not only special interest groups that donate generously to their campaigns. Who will speak out if we don't? As people of faith, let us make our voices heard as the prophets of old did!

Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP

Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

Hundreds of Priests Support Ordination of Women/ Ms. Magazine Story

Roy Borgeois holds cup, Janice holds bread at ordination in Lexington, KY.

Hundreds of Roman Catholic priests from all over the world are challenging the Vatican to rethink all-male celibate priesthood and ordain women priests. In the United States, 157 Roman Catholic priests signed a statement in support Roy Bourgeois, a member of the Maryknoll religious order and priest who faces dismissal for taking part in a ceremony that purported to ordain Janice Sevre-Duszynskaas. ... Sevre-Duszynska, now a member of the Roman Catholic Women Priests, began her journey to priesthood in 1998. She gained media attention over the years for "disrupting" services and conferences calling for ordination of women priests. In 2008, Bourgeois delivered the homily ordaining her a "womanpriest." ...In June, 300 Austrian priests and deacons issued a "Call to Disobedience" to promote priesthood for both married men and women. The Austrian priests and deacons read aloud a public prayer for "church reform" in every Mass. "

Bridget Mary's Reflection:
Three years ago, Maryknoll priest Roy Bourgeois crossed the line by participating at Janice Sevre-Duszynska's ordination in Lexington Kentucky. Now his fellow priests are coming on board in a growing wave of enthusiasm for women priests in the Catholic Church. Bridget Mary Meehan, Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Listen to Radio Program- "On Point" Conversation on Ordaining Female Catholic Priests

The Breakup: Why Ireland Is No Longer Vatican's Loyal Follower/ TIME Magazine Article

"Kenny drew a line in the sand in regards to Ireland's traditional status as a loyal Catholic state: "This is the Republic of Ireland 2011. A republic of laws, of rights and responsibilities; of proper civic order; where the delinquency and arrogance of a particular version, of a particular kind of "morality," will no longer be tolerated or ignored."...

... "The Vatican will have been taken aback by Ireland's defiance after centuries of being politically deferential towards the Church," says theologian Gina Menzies. "The idea that Ireland is a republic beholden to no faith is a departure for a country in which introducing contraception and divorce were difficult," she says.

(See why Ireland is running out of priests.)

Read more:,8599,2085306,00.html#ixzz1TJaIUjO1

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

NPR: "On Point", July 27, 2011/ 11 AM EDT/ Enjoy a lively debate with Fr. Roy, Eileen Di Franco and Pia di Solenni on women priests

First USA ordination of Roman Catholic Women Priests
Pittsburgh, July 31, 2006.
Listen to interview
Eileen Di Franco, RCWP, she was ordained as a priest in 2006 and has a Masters in Divinity.
Rev. Roy Bourgeois, a priest for 39 years with the Maryknoll Order.
Pia de Solenni, a commentator and a consultant to the Catholic Church

You can go to site and call in, add comments, etc.
Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

"Women Called to the Priesthood"/Cindy Yoshitomi/Ventura County Star

By Jean Cowden Moore , Joseph A. Garcia
"Cindy Yoshitomi is part of the Roman Catholic Womenpriests movement" ...
"We're Roman Catholics, and it's our church," said Cindy Yoshitomi, 63, of Port Hueneme. "You can't get around that. We're starting this grass-roots movement. ... We're creating a space where these disillusioned Catholics can find community."Read more: -

"Following God's Calling, Not Man's: Growing Movement Ordains Women as Catholic Priests"- by Chris Charlson/ City Beat/Cincinnati

Roman Catholic Woman Priest, Janice Sevre -Duszynska and Maryknoll priest Roy Bourgeois demonstrate for justice at a School of the Americas Watch Vigil in Ft. Benning, Georgia each year.

Read entire article by Chris Charlson at link to City Beat :

"Historically, a number of brave women have established themselves as a catalyst for change, dedicating their lives to a cause that becomes so compelling that they’re willing to risk everything they know to achieve their goal.
One such woman is Lexington resident and peace activist Janice Sevre-Duszynska. As a member of the Roman Catholic Women Priests, she and others like her relentlessly challenge the church’s dogma including their right to be ordained as priests. Her story and those of many other determined women have been featured in Pink Smoke Over the Vatican, a documentary that played at the Esquire Theatre earlier this month..."

"In 2008, Sevre-Duszynska was ordained a “womanpriest” by the order at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Lexington. With more than 150 people in attendance, she celebrated the joyous event with family, friends, fellow peace activists and supporters of the women’s ordination movement including three male priests in good standing.The Rev. Roy Bourgeois delivered the homily, an act that would have lasting repercussions. After sending invitations to a number of male priests, Bourgeois called to tell her he would be proud to attend and deliver the homily."“I said, 'I know you know what you’re doing — but do you know what you’re doing?' ” she says...
"To date, the Roman Catholic Women Priests movement boasts 120 female priests with branches in in Eastern and Western Europe, Eastern and Western Canada and the United States, says womanpriest Bridget Mary Meehan. In addition, Meehan says she recently ordained the first woman in South America expanding the order to yet another continent. She explains the grassroots movement continues to play by church rules, a measure necessary to gain credibility.
She says of the seven womenpriests originally ordained on the Danube in 2002, two were later ordained secretly by a male bishop in good standing. As part of apostolic succession in the Catholic religion, the church only recognizes priests ordained by chosen bishops in good standing; an act that was completed under the veil of secrecy, but carried out nonetheless, Meehan says. ...The movement includes more reforms than simply ordaining women, Meehan adds. The grassroots movement looks to reinvent the church into a more egalitarian, circular model where all members participate and feel empowered. "

"....With all the adversity these women face in the Catholic Church, the question arises why don’t women like Meehan and Sevre-Duszynska simply embrace another faith that ordains women as church leaders — why fight the fight?"
... (Duszynska) She says while reform needs to occur within the church, she can’t help but love the institution based on the gospels and filled with patron saints that has always been a part of her life. “Why should I leave the richness and all of my experiences in the church that I worked to and was called upon to speak out and challenge it?” she asks. “I feel like a daughter of the church, why would I want to leave it?”

Contact Janice Sevre-Duszynska, ARCWP
Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

Federation of Christian Ministries Assembly 2011/ Ministering in One Biosphere/ Highlights and Photos

Dramatic Portrayal of Harriet Tubman

by IIene Evans at closing brunch

Peter Brennan, bishop, Married Priests Now,

Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP,

Mariellen Mayers, RCWP, Andrea Johnson, RCWP

Bill Manseau (newly ordained bishop/Married Priests Now,

Bridget Mary Meehan)

Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP, Gerry Grudzen,

President of Global Ministries University and

Andrea Johnson, RCWP

Ministering in One Biosphere addressed ministering with empathy and with a compassionate heart as well as with wisdom ---contributing to the well-being of others in all areas of life. Ministry challenges us to live our full potential, connected with all beings in our earth. We are all one embraced in the circle of life in the Holy One.

On Saturday afternoon, Dr. Margaret Flowers presented an inspiring lecture on universal right of healtcare. She represents 18,000 physicians committed to a National Health Program. Even though she is challenging a system that is in need of major reform and currently broken, her presentation gave me hope for the future- if we can build a consensus around a single payer sytem like Medicare, rather than a profit-driven health industry. Dr. Margaret Flowers is a breath of hope for the future of health care in our country.

Our liturgy was woven into the entire day. Andrea Johnson and I collaborated with the conference organizers, Ginny and Bob Graf in designing a liturgy that reach a climax with our concluding banquet on Sat. evening. At the closing of our meal, we prayed together and shared the sacred bread and wine with the women and men at our tables in remembrance of the Risen Christ in our midst.

On Sunday morning, I enjoyed Dr. James Lochner's presentation on "living in a changing climate". We were given practical things to do to reuse, recycle, and renew our earth's resources, rather than to continue to abuse them. In spite of greenhouse gases, catastrophic storms, etc there are possibilities for improvement if we act together as a society.

LLene Evans gave a stunning portrayal of Harriet Tubman at the closing brunch that I will never forget. She received a standing ovation!

The Federation of Christian Ministries is a professional, interfaith ministry organizations that endorses ministers to serve the people of God. It was a honor to serve as president of this visionary, inclusive organization for four years. For over fifteen years, I have been a proud member of FCM and recommend it highly to anyone who wants to belong to a Christ- inspired organization that is open to people of all spiritual persuasions. They offer commissioning to those who are called to ministry, and provide professional membership and status to all who wish to minister. For women in the Catholic Church FCM certifies for professional ministry including wedding officiant. The RC church will not endorse the non-ordained to officiate at weddings unless it is an exceptional situation. Women Priests are joining FCM in record numbers for the professional networking opportunities it offers. As a commissioning agency FCM offers specialized ministry endorsment for chaplains in instiutional settings.

As members of an inclusive ecumencial community of support to women and men ministers of all denonminations and faiths, they are blessed companions on the journey whom I recommend to all.

The mission of FCM is:

"Called by God’s Spirit and grounded in personal spiritual practice, the Federation of Christian Ministries responds by worshiping God and supporting the growth in faith and ministry of its individual and collective members.Our Christ-inspired organization does this by welcoming people of all spiritual persuasions.We offer empowerment and certification to those who have discerned a call to ministry.FCM offers the following benefits to its members: education, certification, professional endorsement for specialized ministries, yearly assemblies, free listing of ministries on the FCM website, prayer support, regional networking, and a bi-monthly newsletter Diaspora.FCM members are available for the following ministry services: worship communities, officiating at weddings, ministering at baptisms and funerals, pastoral care, spiritual direction, healing, retreats, and interfaith dialogue."

Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP

Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

Monday, July 25, 2011

Why Are You Going Against the Catholic Church? The Answer Is Simple...

(Sometimes we get questions from concerned Catholics who are sincerely trying to understand the reasons we are disobeying an unjust man-made church law to follow the Spirit in prophetic obedience)

We look directly to Jesus and also to Mary. Many of us are ,in fact, mothers, grandmothers, foster and adoptive mothers, and all of us care for God's little ones from the cradle to the grave-ALL of God's beloved people. We follow our beloved Christ in all ways, and remember the part of the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-53) where Mary says:God "has scattered those who are proud ...brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble...has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty..." thereby setting the tone for Jesus'teachings and his love for the poor, women, strangers, the outcast and those who were out of step with the priests of his day,especially the Pharisees.
Jesus rebuked the religious leaders of that day many times to show that God wanted something more of us. Where the "Magisterium" or canon or tradition of any church and its "rulers" declare teachings that are not in accordance with the love and equality and inclusiveness of Jesus - we have the courage to change that while remaining faithful to Jesus.
Judy Lee, ARCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests.

Another issue raised by critics of our movement is "you should imitate Mary, who was silent and docile"

A RCWP Responds::

"We do, also, respect the role of Mary, mother of Jesus. I, however, do not see her as a silent, docile woman. I remember her as a woman who, through strength and determination, overcame the stigma of being seen as an un-wed mother; conquered the fearfulness of being "homeless" when she was about to give birth; defeated the challenges of being an immigrant to the land of Egypt in order to save her baby son's life; and endured the horror of seeing her only child become a perfectly innocent victim of capital punishment - as she stood at the foot of the cross, with amazing strength. I remember, too, that she was the one who set her son Jesus on his path to ministry as she ignored his claim that his "time had not come" at the wedding feast of Cana. Mary was called to a unique role in the life of Jesus and our Church. She was not - in my way of thinking - docile or quiet!"

Mary Ann Schoettly, RCWP/USA

"The Revolution Has Begun" by Donna Rougeux, (Ordinand, ARCWP)

Left to right:
Janice Sevre Duszynska, ARCWP,
Maryknoll Priest, Fr. Roy Bourgeois,
Donna Rougeux, Ordinand, ARCWP

In one weekend we experienced the excitement of the newest wave of the Holy Spirit and seemed to be moving on the wave the entire weekend. Bridget Mary's words sum it up well..."The Revolution has begun." To tell this story I need to start with how the weekend began. On Friday Janice and I went to Cincinnati for a Mary Magdalen prayer service with the Sisters of Charity at Mount Saint Joseph. The lady who did the reflection talked about how important it is for women to be ordained as priests! This prayer service was very well attended and the message about women being ordained set the stage for what followed. The next day, we were getting ready to go to the showing of Pink Smoke at the Esquire Theatre in Cincinnati and were sidetracked with the awesome article on the front page of the New York Times about the 150 American Priests signing a statement supporting Roy who advocates for women's ordination. So Janice and I went out to get some copies of the New York Times. We bought the last copy the store had and took it to the showing of Pink Smoke. After experiencing the exhilaration of a sell out showing of Pink Smoke (200 people) we were eating lunch and were reminded by Ruth that Roy was going to speak at a CTA gathering in Pittsburg tomorrow. Janice asked Ruth how long it took to get to Pittsburg from Cincinnati. Ruth told her that it takes 5 hours. Janice looked at me with the words 'Road Trip' written on her face and I told her I had never met Roy and had always wanted to meet him. So with no clean clothes in our suitcase and no map and no place to stay...yet, we took off to Pittsburg. It was like a modern day version of disciples journeying to see a prophet. Ruth told us to get on 71 and then 70 to Wheeling and when she got home she would call us with the rest of the directions and give us Joan Hoak's phone number so we could call her to see if we could stay with her or one of her friends when we got to Pittsburg.

Janice has a new car with the ability to get phone calls through bluetooth allowing a 'conference call effect' to be the way we used the phone as we journeyed along. When one travels with Janice Sevre-Duszynska in this fashion, it doesn't take long to see how connected she is to so many people through her peace and justice work and with our movement for women's ordination. The whole time we were driving phone call after phone call came in from people who saw the New York Times article. There I was in the passenger seat connecting the calls and hearing all these people I only knew about from reading about them call her and say "Did you see the New York Times Janice?" Or "Great picture in the New York Times Janice!" Every time we got a call like that we both started laughing. It was very entertaining and inspiring.

Many phone calls later along with great conversation between the calls, we arrived at Joan's house and spent the evening talking to Joan and her husband and listening to Roy being interviewed on a local radio station. The next day we went to an old German church downtown to attend mass, lunch and hear Roy talk. The gathering was sponsored by CTA and it was very well attended (about 300 people). Joan presided at the mass and Janice assisted with communion. The mass was beautiful and it focused on Mary Magdalen. At the end of mass Joan called me and Janice to the front and told everyone that Roy attended Janice's ordination and that I was going to be ordained as a deacon on Sept. 10. Everyone clapped. There was a break before we at lunch.

During the break a lady came up to me and asked me to tell her how I became interested in the movement. After telling her some of my story she said she was going to be a nun but had not taken her final vow. She said she felt like she was supposed to be at this CTA event but didn't know why. She had never been to a mass with a woman presider until this event. When I told her I was a chaplain she said she always wanted to be a chaplain. At one point she got tearful and said she felt like there was a big reason for her to be there. When I suggested that maybe God was calling her to be a priest she cried tears of joy and said she would pray about it. I think this lady will not be making her final vow to be a nun! It was amazing to see the Holy Spirit working with her right before my eyes! She hadn't even heard Roy speak yet.

Fr. Roy was inspirational and I found myself moved to tears at several points when he passionately said words supporting women's ordination. I guess that was the first time I had ever heard a male priest be that openly supportive and it touched my heart deeply. It was great to talk to him and personally thank him for all of his work. He is a prophet. CTA agrees with my observation and they gave him an award for being a 21st century prophet.

When it was time to leave we said good-bye to Joan, John and Roy. We drove and talked to more people on the phone as we journeyed back home. What a spirit filled and empowering weekend! We are in exciting times. I never dreamed this would be happening in my life time! My heart is filled with thanksgiving to our God that I am part of this very important moment in a time when the Holy Spirit is once again breathing new life into the church that we love.

Donna Rougeux, Ordinand/ARCWP

Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

"Vatican Recalls Ambassador to Ireland Over Abuse Report" By Rachel Donadio/New York Times
July 25, 2011
"ROME — In a deepening standoff, the
Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland following the release of an Irish government report that the Vatican had discouraged efforts by bishops to report cases of sex abuse to the police, the Holy See said Monday.In a statement issued Monday, the Vatican cited “the reactions that ensued” following the publication of the report.
The Vatican’s decision to recall Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza follows the
release on July 13 of the report, which found that clergy in the rural Irish diocese of Cloyne did not act on complaints against 19 priests from 1996 to as recently as 2009. More damningly, it said that the Vatican had encouraged bishops to ignore child-protection guidelines adopted by Irish bishops in 1996 that included “mandatory reporting” of abuse to civil authorities.
A spokesman for the Vatican said that recalling a nunzio, the church’s equivalent of an ambassador, was a rare move that “denoted the seriousness of the situation,” as well the Holy See’s “will to deal with it with objectivity and determination.”The spokesman, the Rev. Ciro Benedettini, told reporters on Monday that Archbishop Leanza would return to Rome to consult with Vatican officials who are preparing an official response to the Irish government, but added that the decision “does not exclude some degree of surprise and disappointment at certain excessive reactions.”....

Sunday, July 24, 2011

"The End of Awe" by Maureen Dowd/ Ireland Leads Way to Challenge Vatican to Protect Children Vs. Perpetrators of Sexual Abuse

July 23, 2011
The End of Awe

"WEDNESDAY found both the British prime minister and the Irish taoiseach passionately addressing their parliaments about the demystified lords of their universes.
Across the Irish Sea in Dublin, Enda Kenny took on the actual pope, making a blazing speech about the Vatican’s unconscionable behavior in the pedophilia scandal.
After 17 years of revolting revelations, Kenny said the latest report on the Cloyne diocese in County Cork exposed “an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic as little as three years ago, not three decades ago.”
The report, he said, “excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day. The rape and torture of children were downplayed or ‘managed’ to uphold, instead, the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and ‘reputation.’ ...

Bridget Mary's Reflection:

Maureen Dowd, an Irish American, is an astute observer of the human condition . She is "right on" about issues that apply to the Roman Catholic Church.

It is ironic that Ireland is putting its foot down. It is positioned to take on the Vatican and demand accountability in a way that no other nation can.

One would have to be Irish to appreciate what a courageous stance this is for Enda Kenny, the prime minister!

I certainly get it!

Our family left Coolkerry, Rathdowney, Ireland when I was 8 years old, in 1956, but in the USA, we were raised as if we lived in Ireland. My mother, Bridie, led the family rosary every night. We attended Mass weekly, if not more often, made novenas, my brothers, Patrick and Sean attended parochial schools, obeyed all the rules, etc.

So, I know all about the cultural connection between being Irish and being Roman Catholic. Tribal identity and religious affliation are intimately connected in Ireland, and the Irish in the United States lived their "irish" identity in the United States.

So fast forward to today.

What a indictment of the Catholic Church by a Catholic country!

Perhaps, the Irish are the only ones who could really demand at the Vatican deal with the crisis in a way that values children as the images of God, worthy of protection that puts their rights in civil law above protection of clergy perpetrators in canon law.

Now the question is will the Irish lead the world in challenging Vatican diplomatic immunity as a shield for clergy criminals who are transferred from country to country in violation of the human rights of children?

Instead of complaining about their prophetic stance, the Vatican should be expressing gratitude to the Irish for once again saving the church!

Right on, holy Ireland for leading the way, once again, as you did long ago!

Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

Federation of Christian Ministries Presents Soto Award to Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests and to Roman Catholic Womenpriests/USA

Bridget Mary Meehan (left) and Andrea Johnson (right)

receive Soto Award for ARCWP and RCWP/USA

Eastern region

Photo of past Soto award recepients

who were present at annual

FCM Assembly on July 24, 2011

On July 24, 2011, Bob and Ginny Graf, southern region Vice-Presidents of the Federation of Christian Ministries, presented the Soto award for visionary and courageous leadership to the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests and to Roman Catholic Womenpriests USA/Eastern Region Bridget Mary Meehan, from ARCWP, accepted the award and Andrea Johnson from RCWP/USA Eastern region accepted the award on behalf of their respective women priests communities in the United States.