Monday, April 16, 2018

Olga Lucia Alvarez Benjumea ARCWP Shares "Women Priests Seen from the Eyes of a Woman From her Experience as One of the Secretaries at Latin American Episcopal Conference in Medellin 1968 +50 Years


I have had the opportunity to share my experience as one of the secretaries of the Latin American Episcopal Conference in Medellín-1968, about its internal development, before, after and now.

In the conversation before and after Medellin. With Father Federico Carrasquilla.
Outside the official program, I have been invited to talk about life as a Roman Catholic presbyter, for two hours
The meeting was with 33 priests and a bishop, 5 women, 5 lay people. Only some of them knew the history of women in El Danubio 2002, and they knew nothing of our presence in the American continent and, more specifically, in Latin America.
At first I did not accept being at the main table, because my sharing was not academic, but the story of my life as a presbyter.

Sharing the History and my life experience as a presbyter, from the common participants, without the academic table.

Appearance of the meeting and some of its participants.

The participants are of a missionary nature, who have been giving their lives and giving testimony to the service of the Church, in different countries of Latin America.
At the end of our fraternal dialogue. One of the members raises his voice and reminds us of the reading of Acts of the Apostles, a reading we had read and heard in the Eucharist of the morning and taken in the homily very beautifully by the bishop who accompanied us:
  "Then a Pharisee named Gamaliel, doctor of the law, with prestige before all the people, rose up in the Sanhedrin. He commanded to do pop out the men, and said Israel, be careful what you do with these hombres.Porque some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, which brought together about four hundred men; He was killed and all those who followed him broke up and were left with nothing. After this, in the days of the census, Judas the Galileo arose, who dragged the people after him; He also perished and all who followed him dispersed. I say to you now, stand aside from these men and leave them. Because if this idea or this work belongs to men, it will be destroyed; but if it is from God, you will not succeed in destroying them. Lest you find yourself fighting against God. And they accepted his opinion. Then they called the apostles; and, after having beaten them, they were told not to speak in the name of Jesus. And they left them free. They marched from the presence of the Sanhedrin happy to have been considered worthy to suffer outrages by the Name "Acts 5: 34-41".
While in Medellin, there was no talk of women priests, today we talk about it, using the methodology used in Medellin, with expanded view in the SEE, JUDGE AND ACTING: The reality of today's Church in SEE, not It's the same as 50 years ago. The JUDGE, its lens to look at is from the Gospel, in a Church of the poor, for the poor. The ACTING: Given the new poor, impoverished, our attitudes change radically in the past: the peasants, indigenous and displaced / peasants, before the violation against the womb of our Mother Earth, causing continuous abortions without respecting life. Marginalization and contempt for LGTBI. Marginalization and disdain for diversity, intercultural, interreligious, and intergenerational. The lack of protection towards the Pachamama not only of our Continent, but of the world between, "The common house" to which we are all invited to protect and save. Why not insert it into our liturgies, your living participation, "grow, manage and conserve"? Genesis 1:28
In extending this methodology, our Movement inclusive appears without competition with the clergy, without clericalism, without irony, claiming to live Baptism fully, as women, the abolition of Canon 1024: "only baptized men can be ordered. " Accept and acknowledge that the message was delivered to women, not only in words, but in fact:
Matthew 28:10: Then Jesus said to them: "Do not fear. Go, warn My brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me. "

My German brothers, missionaries and participants, who continue to boldly and courageously give their lives announcing the Gospel.
Our proposal as a Roman Catholic Presbyterian Movement is not whether we are legitimate, legal or illegal, our message is the empowerment of our Baptism, both lay and religious in the proclamation of the Gospel. Our items of Baptism, can not continue to be similar to a civil registry.
All of us added to sign and experience the commitment of the Covenant of the Catacombs, together with our bishops, who were not only 40 bishops, but 500 more. Document that cancels, the agreement of Constantinople, of an imperialist Church.
We are still standing! Theology of Liberation has not died, our martyrs and leaders murdered, and buried, are dead, they are seeds, which sprout again on earth, with new theological tasks, announcing the Ecclesial Spring of the Church.

Copy of the mural donated by Perez Esquivel to Monseñor Proaño, in the Diocese of Riobamba. It is copied with the proper permission.

Medellín  from August 26 to September 8,  1968
Medellín from August 26 to September 8, 2018

* Roman Catholic Presbyter.

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