Friday, November 12, 2021

VIDEO LINKS FOR PCS Forum on Womanist Church - Presenters: Rev. Dr. Irie Lynne Session, Rev. Kamilah Hall Sharp, and Rev. Dr. Jann Aldredge-Clanton


PCS Forum: WOMANIST CHURCH – November 11, 2021





Womanist Church Presentation at 1pm:

https://youtu.be/PZlLl1yEt1w


Womanist Church Presentation at 7pm:

https://youtu.be/E5Yn0f6PIOA


A womanist church has great power to transform church and society, primarily because womanist theology centers the experiences of Black women while working for the survival and wholeness of all people and all creation. Experiences of the triple oppression of racism, sexism, and classism give Black women an epistemological insight into recognizing injustice and creating solutions that benefit all. 



The Gathering is unique, the only church founded and identified as “womanist,” applying womanist theology to the full life and worship of a church. The Gathering, a womanist faith community in Dallas, Texas, welcomes all people to partner in pursuing racial equity, LGBTQ equality, and dismantling PMS (patriarchy, misogyny, and sexism), following Jesus in liberating the oppressed and lifting up the marginalized. 
The Gathering website: https://www.thegatheringexperience.com 

You are invited to experience the Gathering, a Womanist Church, on Facebook live every Saturday at 4pm Pacific Time, 5pm Mountain Time, 6pm Central Time, 7pm Eastern. Click here to join the experience:

The Gathering on Facebook.


https://www.facebook.com/thegatheringdallas


The Gathering, A Womanist Church tells the story of the birth and ongoing development of a womanist faith community. This book includes personal narratives of people transformed in this community, womanist co-pastors’ sermons informed by their experiences and those of other Black women, and litanies for womanist worship.  The book is available on Amazon.com










Presenters: 

Rev. Dr. Irie Lynne Session is co-pastor of the Gathering, A Womanist Church, a Spiritual Entrepreneur, and Chief Illuminator of DreamBIG Courses, Coaching, Content Creation, & Connections. She holds a master of divinity with a certificate in Black Church Studies and doctor of ministry in prophetic preaching and transformative leadership.  Dr. Session is the author of Badass Women of the Bible: Inspiration from Biblical Women Who Challenged and Subverted Patriarchy and Murdered Souls, Resurrected Lives: Postmodern Womanist Thought in Ministry with Women Prostituted and Marginalized by Commercial Sexual Exploitation. For more information: https://dririe.com/dreambig-academy

Rev. Kamilah Hall Sharp is a St. Louis, Missouri native currently residing in Texas with her spouse, Nakia, and daughter, Anaya. She is a co-pastor of The Gathering, A Womanist Church in Dallas and a PhD candidate in Biblical Interpretation-Hebrew Bible at Brite Divinity School. Kamilah holds a bachelor of science in business economics, a master of divinity, and a juris doctor degree.





Rev. Dr. Jann Aldredge-Clanton, an ordained minister and author, is co-chair of Equity for Women in the Church, ministry partner of The Gathering, adjunct professor at Richland College, and co-leader of New Wineskins Community. Her books include Praying with Christ-Sophia, Changing Church, and Inclusive Songs for Resistance & Social Action.






 

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community Liturgy 33rd Week of Extraordinary Time, November 13, 2021 Liturgy Team: Readers: Joan Meehan & Jerry Bires Prayer Leaders: Andrea Seabaugh, Ann Cooke & Jack Duffy, Mary Montavon & Jack McKillip , Janet Blakeley & Michael Rigdon Presiding, IT provided by Peg Bowen, Music by Linda Lee Miller

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85108095506?pwd=Y3IyS0xkaWZ1WGRUOXlZMm5qcE1Fdz09

Meeting ID: 851 0809 5506
Passcode: 1066

Welcome! (Janet) We warmly welcome you to the inclusive Catholic Community of Mary Mother of Jesus in Sarasota, Florida. All are welcome here. We invite you to pray the liturgy where it says, All.” And please sing your heart out! Everyone will be muted during the service. Some of you will unmute yourself to read a prayer, then mute yourself again. Also during the shared homily and prayers of the community, we invite you to unmute yourself to contribute, then mute yourself again. (Hint: If you have a space bar on your device, simply hold it down while you speak, then lift your finger to mute again!) Please have bread and wine or juice with you as we pray the Eucharistic Prayer. We have pauses at several points in the liturgy. During the pause you might focus on your breathing during four slow breaths. Or reflect on the words, or re-read a few sentences that struck you.


Sign of Peace. (Andrea) Please welcome one another with a sign of Christ’s peace! Bow toward your camera with hands folded 🙏 as we pray:

All: I honor the presence of God in you. Namaste, Namaste, Namaste.


Theme (Michael) 1. In this month of All Saints, we remember that our beloved community saints are like the sparkling stars that fill the sky and twinkle on a clear fall evening. 2. Christ’s self-sacrificing love guarantees forgiveness, once and for all. We participate in this forgiveness—Christ’s paschal mystery, by baptism and by our selfless love for the neglected and abused among us. Please join in our 🎶 gathering song:


🎶  Prayer of St Francis 


https://youtu.be/pSnSZ1vtmZM

Make me a channel of your peace. 

Where there is hatred, let me bring your love. 

Where there is injury, your pardon, God, 

and where there is doubt, true faith in you. 

Make me a channel of your peace.

Where there’s despair in life, let me bring hope. 

Where there is darkness only light, 

and where there’s sadness ever joy. 

Oh God, grant that I may never seek 

so much to be consoled, as to console, 

to be understood as to understand, 

to be loved, as to love with all my soul. 

Make me a channel of your peace. 

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned, 

in giving of ourselves that we receive

And in dying that we’re born to eternal life.

Make me a channel of your peace.


Reconciliation Rite (Jerry) 

Let’s remember now times when messages of our unworthiness clouded our vision of the infinite Love within us. Let us imagine our imperfections, the chaos and messes of our lives, all brightly lit by a love that heals and transforms us as we evolve and grow in awareness of our divinity and our humanity. 


(Pause for several moments…… Now place hand over your heart & say)


All: I love you. Thank you. I’m sorry. I forgive you. Thank you. I love you. 


🎶 Joyful Gloria. 


https://youtu.be/_lA5I0nODZI


Opening Prayer (From our Solemnity of All Saints celebration on October 30)

(Janet) Let us pray: we rejoice that we are in the Holy One from the first moment of life until we pass into the fullness of eternal life. We are called to follow Jesus’ path to blessedness by living the Beatitudes in our world today. By the power of the Spirit working in us, it will be so. ALL: Let it be so!


Liturgy of the Word. Excerpts from The Message by Eugene H Peterson. 

First reading from the Book of Daniel (Jerry)

That's when Michael, the great angel-prince, champion of your people, will step in. It will be a time of trouble, the worst trouble the world has ever seen. But your people will be saved from the trouble, every last one found written in the Book. Many who have been long dead and buried will wake up, some to eternal life, others to eternal shame.

Men and women who have lived wisely and well will shine brilliantly, like the cloudless, star-strewn night skies. And those who put others on the right path to life will glow like stars forever. 

Let’s pause for a few moments to reflect on this inspired message from the Book of Daniel….  And we respond by proclaiming, All: I believe!


🎶 Starry Starry Night, Don McLean (verse 1)


https://youtu.be/oxHnRfhDmrk


Second reading from the Letter to the Hebrews (Joan M)

Every priest goes to work at the altar each day, offers the same old sacrifices year in, year out, and never makes a dent in the sin problem. As a priest, Christ made a single sacrifice for sins, and that was it! Then he sat down right beside God and waited for his enemies to cave in. It was a perfect sacrifice by a perfect person to perfect some very imperfect people. By that single offering, Christ did everything that needed to be done for everyone who takes part in the purifying process. 

The Holy Spirit confirms this:

   “This new plan I'm making with Israel

      isn't going to be written on paper,

      isn't going to be chiseled in stone;

   This time I'm writing out the plan in them,

      carving it on the lining of their hearts.”

The Spirit concludes,

   “I'll forever wipe the slate clean of their sins.”

Once sins are taken care of for good, there's no longer any need to offer sacrifices for them. 

Please pause for a few moments to consider these inspired words from the book of Hebrews….


🎶  Alle, Alle, Alleluia 


https://youtu.be/gIHnZn3JjcM


A reading from the Good News attributed to Mark (Jack D)

Following those hard times,

   Sun will fade out,

      Moon cloud over,

   Stars fall out of the sky,

      Cosmic powers tremble.

And then they'll see the Son of Man enter in grand style, his Arrival filling the sky—no one will miss it! The Son of Man will dispatch the angels; they will pull in the chosen from the four winds, from pole to pole.

Take a lesson from the fig tree. From the moment you notice its buds form, the merest hint of green, you know summer's just around the corner. And so it is with you. When you see all these things, you know he is at the door. Don't take this lightly. I'm not just saying this for some future generation, but for this one,

too—these things will happen. Sky and earth will wear out; my words won't wear out.

But the exact day and hour? No one knows that, not even heaven's angels, not even the Son. Only the Father. So keep a sharp lookout, for you don't know the timetable. 

Let us reflect on these words from the evangelist Mark….


 🎶 Alle, Alle, Alleluia 


https://youtu.be/gIHnZn3JjcM


Shared Homily (Michael) 


Profession of Faith (Ann & All)  

~We believe in the all-embracing Source of Life, birthing and healing, making all things possible.

~We believe that the transformative Divine sparks relationship across Earth and Eternity, with love beyond our wildest dreams.

~We believe that The Beloved waits patiently for us to erase the boundaries we place around human consciousness, and to realize heaven in the here and now.

 ~We believe that in the twists and turns of difficult times, the Holy One invites us into relationship with a love that can soothe and unify a hurting world.

~We believe in Jesus whose radical blend of divinity and humanity reveals the promise and the challenge of being crafted in the image and likeness of our Creator.

~We believe that like Jesus, we are called to bring generous presence to the lonely and despairing, the hurting and broken, the yearning and

disenfranchised.

~We believe in the Spirit of Sophia Wisdom, nudging the universe to unfold as it would, making each new day one filled with promise and possibility.

~We believe that the Spirit inspires within and among us the gentleness to comfort, the daring to challenge and the strength to lift up.

~We believe in the wildfire of the Spirit, sweeping through this amazing journey of life, urging us toward wholeness, forever and ever. (2016, A Creed for all times by Lynn Kinlan)


A few moments of silence before we bring our community prayers and offerings to the table.

Prayers of the Community (Joan M) We bring to the table prayers for our community and the world. (Response: Christ, you graciously hear us!) 

We bring to the table our MMOJ members who aren’t with us today. In this time of physical distancing may we find ways to remain close and connected to our family, our friends, and our community. We pray. R 

We bring to the table all who have died from covid, who suffer from “long haul covid,” as well as their family and friends who bear an enormous burden of grief. R

We bring to the table all our MMOJ members with serious and chronic health conditions, especially Diane, Mary Kay, and Donna. We pray. R

We bring to the table our fellow citizens who work to address our national pandemic of racism and police violence. May we support efforts to promote justice for all who suffer from systemic racism. We pray. R 

We bring to the table the petitions in our book of community prayers… We pray. R

Who and what else shall we bring to the table today? 

(Please turn your mic on to offer a prayer, then mic off.) 

Christ, we will be your presence in the world today and every day of our lives. All: Amen


We Offer Our Gifts at the table 🥖 🍷(Michael & All)

Blessed are you, God of all creation. Through your goodness, we have this bread 🥖 and wine🍷 to offer, that earth has given and human hands have prepared. They will become for us the bread of life and our spiritual drink. 


Eucharistic Prayer (Michael) (pause) We begin our Eucharistic prayer in song:

🎶 We are holy! 


https://youtu.be/orKBBIj5LZA
🎶 


(Mary M & All): O Holy One, send your Spirit now to settle on this bread and wine, 

and fill them with the fullness of Jesus.

And let that same Spirit rest on us, 

converting us from the patterns of this passing world, 

until we conform to the shape of Jesus whose food we now share. Amen


(Extend hand in blessing) 

We Remember Jesus (Janet & All): 

On the night before he died, while at supper with his friends, 

Jesus took bread 🥖, said the blessing, broke the bread and gave it to them saying, Take this, all of you, and eat. This is my body which will be broken for you.” (Pause) 

In the same way, Jesus took the cup of wine🍷. 

Jesus said the blessing, gave the cup to his friends and said, 

Take this all of you and drink. This is the cup of my life-blood. 

Do this to remember me.” 


(Jack Mc & All): Remember, gracious God, your Church throughout the world. 

Make us open to receive all believers. 

In union with all people, may we strive to create a world where suffering is diminished, and where all people can live in health and wholeness.

Thru Christ, with Christ, in Christ, 

in union with the Holy Spirit, all glory is yours, gracious God.   

🎶 The Great Amen. 


https://youtu.be/Dy76fpfkNsg


(Andrea) Let us pray as Jesus taught his companions to pray:

(Andrea & All): O Holy One, you are within, around, and among us.

We celebrate your many names. 

Your wisdom come, your will be done, unfolding from the depths within us.

Each day you give us all we need. 

You remind us of our limits, and we let go. 

You support us in your power, and we act with courage. 

For you are the dwelling place within us, the empowerment around us,

And the celebration among us, now and forever. Amen


(Michael & All): This is Jesus who liberates, heals and transforms us and our world. All are invited to partake of this banquet of love. We are the Body of Christ.      (All receive)

🎶 Lady’s Grace, Kerani 


https://youtu.be/ghOcVwoJYeA
  4:38


Concluding Prayer (Michael) O Holy One, we remembered today Jesus’ perfect sacrifice, once and for all. In our baptism we participated in this paschal mystery, the selfless love of Christ’s death, and his resurrection to new life in you. May we now go out to share your selfless love with everyone we meet this week, especially the abused and neglected who are Christ present to us. All: Yes, let us make it so!


Prayers of Thanksgiving & Announcements (Michael)

Final Blessing (Janet & All)

May our nurturing God bless ✝️ all gathered here 

in the name of the Creator, 

in the name of Mary‘s child, and 

in the name of the Spirit 

as we bring starlight to one another,

especially to the abused and forgotten. 

🎶 Starlight (Intro: Michael) 


https://youtu.be/kJdn_NSZNbA
  3:45

—————————————————————————————

To add an intercession to our MMOJ Community Prayer book, please send an email to Joan Meehan jmeehan515@aol.com  

If you want to invite someone to attend our liturgy, please refer them to the day’s liturgy at MaryMotherofJesus.org      

To support your community, please send your check to:

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community

St Andrew UCC, 6908 Beneva Rd, Sarasota, FL 34238

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Women in the Offices, or Women in the Church? by Olga Lucia Alvarez Benjumea ARCWP

 WOMEN IN THE OFFICES, OR WOMEN IN THE CHURCH?

Olga Lucía Álvarez Benjumea ARCWP*



Pope Francis does not cease to give surprises in his pontificate. Some not so good, others more or less. In any case, the treatment he has been giving to women in the Vatican and Curia is striking. The number of women in the Vatican has been increasing with the last appointments, but not enough and not as it should be.

He dares to denounce the situation of servitude and slavery in which women live in the patriarchal society. Patriarchal society that does not exclude the Church as a religious institution. On September 8/21 he said:

"Men and women have, however, the same dignity, but there is in history, and still today, a slavery of women. Women do not have the same opportunities as men."

On several occasions he has drawn attention to the scarce role of women in the Church. The first time he referred to it returning from World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, September 2013.

In October 2013 in an audience granted to the Pontifical Council for the Laity he said in his speech:

"I suffer, I really mean it, when I see in the Church or in some ecclesial organizations that the role of service of women, which we all have and should have, is transformed into a role of servitude."

The presence of women employees in the Vatican is steadily increasing. In 2019 there were 1,016, 22% of the total staff. With new appointments, this number has varied.

Attention is drawn to the positions assigned to women, whom Pope Francis has appointed to administrative positions in the Dicastery.  He has doubled the number of undersecretaries from two to four. Positions previously held by priests.

We recall the appointment he made in 2017 for the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life, headed by Gabriella Gambino and Linda Ghisoni, both mothers of families, a matter of much novelty in the Holy See. For the Vatican Communications Dicastery, the number of lay people is high compared to other offices of the Holy See, where 2 women occupy leadership positions: Natasa Goverkar, Slovenian, as Head of the Department of Pastoral Theology. Cristiane Murray, Brazilian, appointed as Deputy Director of the Vatican Press Office.

Carmen Ros Nortes, a Spanish nun, as undersecretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life, the third woman already in this role.

By the end of 2019, a total of 9 women, are in positions of particular responsibility in the Holy See. In other words, the number of women in positions of high responsibility in the Roman Curia has been tripling.

In January 2020, he appointed Francesca Di Giovanni, the first woman to achieve a high administrative position in the Vatican Secretariat of State, the most important office of the Vatican City State, as Undersecretary for the Multilateral Sector of the Section for Relations with States, a position that did not exist. This appointment was very prominent in the press, as the presence of women in leadership positions has been scarce.

August/2020 Appoints 6 women to financial affairs are: Marija Kolak, German, worked at the Berliner Volksbank and is currently President of the Bundesverband der Deutschen Volksbanken und Raiffeisenbanken. She is married and has three children.

María Concepción Osacar Garaicoechea, Spanish, is a founding partner of the Azora Group and Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of Azora Capital and Azora Gestion, SGIIC. She holds a law degree from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. She is married and has two daughters.

Eva Castillo Sanz, Spanish, holds a degree in Law and Economics from the Universidad Pontificia de Comillas in Madrid. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Bankia S.A., the Board of Directors of Zardoya Otis S.A. and the Boards of Directors of the Comillas-ICAI Foundation; as well as the Entreculturas Foundation. She graduated in law from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. She is married and has two daughters.

Ruth Mary Kelly, British, worked in the Labour government between 2004 and 2008 as Secretary of State for Education. She currently holds the position of Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at St. Mary's University in London.

Lesile Jane Ferrar, British, Commander of the Royal Victorian Order, was Treasurer to Prince Charles of Wales, from January 2015 to July 2017. She studied at Harvard Business School and Durham University.

Of five of the 22 most important offices of the Curia (Secretariat of State, Secretariat for the Economy, three Dicasteries, nine Congregations, five Councils, three Tribunals) now have women on the leadership team.

A significant appointment in February/2021 was the appointment of a woman as undersecretary for the Synod of Bishops for the first time. This appointment means that for the first time a woman will have the right to vote in an organ of power of the Catholic Church. She is Nathalie Becquart, responsible for the youth apostolate in France.

August 21/2021: Appoints the Salesian nun Alessandra Smerilli, interim secretary of the Dicastery for Integral Human Development and delegate of the Vatican Commission Covid-19.

October/2021: The Aragonese theologian Maria Cristina Inogés Sanz, member of the Methodological Commission of the Synod on the Synod on the Synodality of Bishops, served as "the Pope's opening speaker" at the opening of Synod 2021-2023.

November/2021: Francis appoints Raffaella Petrini, a Franciscan nun, as Secretary General of the Governorate of Vatican City State. She becomes the "number 2" in the Vatican City State. It is the first time that a woman occupies this important position, previously reserved for bishops.

It seems that Francis wonders and will continue to wonder if it is possible to enhance the role of women within the Church. He has said, "it is a reality that worries me very much." (May 16/2016)

Let us not forget the fact that Francis in January/2021 at 84 years old, reformed Canon 230 authorizing the lectorate, acolyte including that women can exercise them and help at the altar during liturgy.

Many more reforms remain to be made both in the Canons and in the structure of the clerical hierarchical institution as such.

The Ruah, the spirit of the Divinity will continue to blow, because a Church without women is not the Church. We women want to serve within the Church, announcing the Gospel, we admire and respect the fact that there are women in the administrative part in the offices of the Vatican and Roman Curia. The emptiness of the presence of women in the Church can be seen and felt.

"Women have a special sensitivity for the 'things of God,'" Francis has said-, "especially to help us understand the mercy, tenderness and love that God has for us." May 12/2016.

 

 

*Roman Catholic Presbyterian

 

Envigado, November 9/2021   

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

 Vatican News.

Holy See Press Bulletin.

The National Catholic Reporter.

ABC, AFP and EFE agencies.


Monday, November 8, 2021

NCR: Your Thoughts on Women Priests: Letters to the Editor in Response to Anne Tropeano's Ordination as a Priest in the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

 https://www.ncronline.org/news/opinion/ncr-today/your-thoughts-women-priests

Anne Tropeano has chosen to be ordained as a Roman Catholic priest, thus breaking the Catholic Church's ban on the ordination of women and crossing the threshold of formal excommunication. Read letters to the editor below from NCR readers about this story. The letters have been edited for length and clarity.

Anne Tropeano ARCWP



God bless my sibling in Christ, Father Anne. If nothing else, she will open minds and maybe hearts to the possibility. I agree neither she nor I will see this in our lifetime.

Women have been, are now and will always be the backbone of the church. We love Jesus with all of our being and hunger to bring him to others. I only wish Father Anne would dress as a woman of her age would dress and not as a cleric. It seems to present a message that we would like to be ordained but we have to dress like a man to be accepted.

JANE FRANCISCO
Charlotte, North Carolina

***

Interesting, tricky, thorny questions raised.

I personally regret the dogmatic affirmation of Pope John Paul II that the church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women. It would have been much wiser and more humble to say "we are not sure." This type of pretentious absolute knowledge of God's design has already led us to blind alleys, like the declaration of nullity on Anglican orders.

The decision of Anne Tropeano to follow to the end her call to serve will undoubtedly bring on her a few (at least) crosses, which she seems to be ready, or at least willing to carry. I pray she remain true to God and to the Spirit.

I hope Tropeano never forgets that her main purpose and raison d'être is the good of the flock. Czech Bishop Felix Davídek ordained Ludmilla Javorová to reach women detainees in Communist Czechoslovakia, and I think he was divinely inspired to do so, even if church authorities disavowed him on learning this.

The Sabbath is for humans, not humans for the Sabbath. Many church leaders seem to have torn this page from their Bible.

GEORGES CHEUNG
Rose Hill, Mauritius

***

I believe that women can be ordained priests. I am happy to attend liturgies celebrated by women. In fact, I tend to prefer female clergy. Furthermore, I recognize Catholic women who are clandestinely or publicly ordained by a bishop as priests. None of that will ever lead me to romanticize schism as is done in this article.

Of course I want to see women ordained to the priesthood within the Catholic Church, but I have no more sympathy for progressive schisms than I do for neo-Tridentine schisms. Schism is not a valid method of Catholic reform. I also don't see why Protestants should be ordained as Catholic priests. Father Anne is a Protestant, and that's fine. With the exception of most Baptists, mainline Protestantism in the U.S. tends to be far more advanced on many critical issues than the Catholic Church is.

Why doesn't Father Anne, who will be co-consecrated by Protestants in a Protestant cathedral, who plans a speaking tour to promote a new Protestant Reformation, own her Protestantism? She would not be the first Protestant to have found succor for the soul in Ignatian spirituality.

JEFFREY JONES
Hamburg, New York

***

It was so inspiring to read the article of Father Anne's coming ordination. One quote in particular stood out to me: "I stopped taking Communion at the church I attend on Sundays so as not to cause problems for the pastor," she said. "... I want people to see the punishment that women like me experience. I go up with my arms crossed, but I don't receive."

As a woman who refuses to annul my first marriage for valid personal reasons and a certainty that God understands, I've been encouraged by many to still receive the Eucharist — "just don't tell the priest." I go up with my arms crossed and tears in my eyes because I want the priest to see every week the type of person being denied sustenance from the table of the Lord.

My life revolves around volunteering at church. I've cantored for 30 years, taught religious education for 25 years and I now even work for a church as their bookkeeper. If I cannot receive Communion, why can the rest of the sinners? Our Lord would never refuse to serve a guest at his table, would he?

ROSEMARIE WASKEL
Des Moines, Iowa

***

***

I am 80 now and have been waiting since I was 7 when I announced to my mother that I was going to be a priest. Her answer: "Girls can't be priests."

I presume that I will not live long enough, even if I make it to 105 as one of my grandmothers did and to almost 104 as did the other, to see the day when our church realizes that women too are called to minister as priests.

But the fact that the desire has never gone away speaks volumes to me.

ROBERTA M. EISENBERG
Greenport, New York

***

I can understand the story as NCR works to represent varied views and respect thoughtful, dignified, considerations of those who may think differently from ourselves — a really necessary work. But I must say with all the self-questioning I could muster as my eyes came to that picture and title was one of repulsion.

As I shared with a friend, asking if it was me, she noted that there are so many larger issues with which we as a church and nation need to deal. I needed that said. It is too bad this appeared as it did. It seems it will not help the larger issues and add antagonism of which we do not need any more.

If women are called to priesthood and so are moved by the Spirit to seek it, then may I suggest a bit more humility lest we add to the clericalism and showmanship of what we already are plagued with. There is a kingdom of God to seek in which we are all God's beloved; may our presence reflect the attributes of the Son who became incarnate to show us the way.

MARY PAUKOVITZ
New Lenox, Illinois

***

At the first Women's March on Washington in 2017, I joined with thousands of others at the Civic Plaza in Albuquerque, New Mexico. As a Catholic priest, I anticipated stares and negative comments by wearing a Roman collar. And that happened. But I also received words of gratitude from those who appreciated to see at least one Roman Catholic priest who had joined with them.

As it turns out, I was not the only Roman Catholic priest in attendance. I spotted a woman holding a sign proclaiming, "Women Priests are Here." I asked if I could get a picture with her. We introduced ourselves. She was surprised to learn that I am a Roman priest. I was even more surprised to learn that she, Rev. Donna Rougeux, is also a Roman Catholic priest. She was validly ordained in 2012 by Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan who claims apostolic succession as she was ordained by a validly ordained male bishop in Austria.

Donna is loving, strong and wise and I am honored to call her my friend and to applaud the courage which she and so many countless women have shown in resisting the denigration and exclusion of our male magisterium.

What we ordained men have done is unconscionable … certainly not of the heart of Jesus!

Welcome Father Anne! Blessings on your priesthood.

GREGORY M. CORRIGAN
Wilmington, Delaware



Letters to the editor are published online each Friday.