> Your views on this subject (Women Priests) are certainly outdated.


> An opener like like almost always means the person is not interested in the

> arguments at hand. Imagine her reaction were you to tell her that her "views

> on tis subject are certainly faddish."


> To merely go by what the Bible says, is to deny how far we as a people have

> come. The Bible was written in a time when women had no rights or position.

> It was

> natural for the authors of the Bible to speak in terms of male priests

> and disciples. But the world is a different place now.


> Again, I don't want to appear rude, but these assertions reveal only an

> ignorance of biblical theology (albeit a remediable ignorance!) The old "but

> the world is a different place now" argument is also used to slip away from

> the grasp of the moral demands of the Ten Commandments. Uncomfortable Fact

> No. 1: The authors of the Bible were inspired by God to write what they

> wrote. In fact, God is the primary author. This person could probably stand

> to read Dei Verbum, Nos. 9-12) and the section in the Catechism on

> inspiration.

> But back to the point. Jesus Christ was both a staunch traditionalist and

> a radical revolutionary, both an entrenched conservative and a progressive

> liberal. In other words, he utterly transcended all political labels. Let's

> look at the priesthood question: Jesus did things that were shocking,

> unlikely, distressing, unpredictable, and socially and culturally radical. He

> ate with sinners, he healed on the Sabbath, he reported his resurrection to a

> woman, he enjoyed the company of women, he revealed his messianic mission to a

> Samaritan woman, HE SAID HE WAS GOD, etc. For Jesus to have ordained women to

> the priesthood would have been a piece of cake by comparison. The surrounding

> religions all had priestesses -- except Judaism.

> Uncomfortable Fact No. 2: That he did not call women to ordained ministry

> is highly significant, and lasting in importance. Since he was God, Jesus was

> most definitely NOT limited by the confines, mores, and taboos of his, or any,

> culture. The decisions he made regarding the foundation and governance of the

> Church are binding and perpetual in all that concerns the essence of the

> faith. Accidentals (fasting regulations, married or celibate priests, incense

> usage, many Mass rubrics, the language of the liturgy, vestments, feast days,

> seminary programs, bells at Mass, altar boys/girls, the agenda of Councils,

> permanent/transitional diaconate, episcopal regalia, where the Pope lives,

> church design, art, architecture,) are all subject to alteration as the

> Church, guided by the Holy Spirit sees fit.

> Clearly, the most basic (and highest) element of Catholic life is the

> Eucharist, and the gender of the persons who perpetuate and render present

> Christ's one sacrifice is a foundational (ie essential) element of the

> Catholic Church. Matter matters! The gender of a priest (like anyone else)

> is fundamental to his identity. Gender is the first datum you notice when

> someone walks into the room. Here is where priestess advocates fall into a

> contradiction: Borrowing from their secular cousins, they insist that if a

> woman can "do a job" as well as a man, then she should have access to the job.

> The premise here is that gender is inconsquential. But if it's really

> inconsequential, then what could be wrong with an all-male priesthood? What

> could be wrong with Christ being incarnate as a male and not a female? It had

> to be one sex or the other, right?

> The very objection to the all-male priesthood rests on the supposition that

> gender IS essential. Also, the priesthood is a call and a gift, not a

> political right to be grabbed by the faithful. Similarly, God chose only the

> Levites to be the Old Covenant priests. Can you imagine the people of the

> Tribe of Judah protesting before the Jewish leadership, "Hey, this is

> discrimination! Uncle Saul here is a better homilist/counsellor/leader than

> most of those crappy Levites who have all the Temple power." So God is an

> unjust discriminator, huh? So Jesus Christ is a sexist, huh? (This claim is,

> of course, a blasphemy.) Is nature unjust for not allowing men to gestate and

> give birth? Are women discriminated against because they can't make

> impregnate?


> Additionally, your comments that women are distresed by the dictate

> that women will never be allowed to be priests merely because that would

> mean they are discriminated against in one particular "job" is very

> shallow.

> Oh yeah? Well, you're a big poopy bum, and my dad can beat up your dad!

> (Sorry, I just had to.)


> Don't you believe that there are women who love Our Lord to

> the extent that they want to do his work? Not as nuns, but as priests,

> allowed to celebrate the Mass, allowed to celebrate the mystery of the

> Holy Eucharist? I see no good reason for a woman who truly has the

> calling, for after all, the priesthood is not just a job, it is a calling, a

> vocation, to be denied the opportunity to do the Lord's work.


> A) How sad to limit "the Lord's work" to the priestly ministry. What about

> making Christian-themed movies, counselling abused women, lovingly changing

> diapers, breast-feeding, tending wounds, arguing court cases on behalf of

> justice, teaching, washing the clothes of the poor, serving soup at a kitchen,

> forgiving your parents, taking your nieces bowling, singing carols at an old

> age home, advising the bishop, writing articles, fixing a sandwich for the

> spouse who just hurt you in an argument, having a spirit of cheerfulness at

> work, teaching NFP classes, babysitting, cooking for an infirmed neighbour --

> or a hundered thousand other works of mercy?

> B) The priesthood is never (or should not be) entered into as a "power

> play." Real power, as our Lord shows so well, resides in service to others.

> Was the Blessed mother discriminated against because she was pased over by her

> Son in favor of better-qualified men? Again, ironcially, the actual teaching

> of the Catholic Church can be argued to suggest a pro-feminine bias: Above

> every single male in 2000 years, the Church has held up one person as the

> ultimate model of Christian discipleship and holiness, and preminently worthy

> of veneration.


> And she doesn't go by"Father" or "Your Holiness."


> She goes by "Mom."


> The Blessed Virgin Mary. A woman. THE Woman.


> In Jesus's time, women had little status. Yet a good number of his most

> faithful followers were women. Anyone He touched and who believed,

> became a disciple, spreading the good news.


> Well, in the face of question-begging assertions like this one, all l I can

> urge any openminded questioner to do is pick up, and drink deeply from, Peter

> Kreeft's - Alice von Hildebrand's book. Everything else is begging the

> question.


> As for the other letter, there's an irony to be savored that a Presbyterian

> couple would quote a non-authoritative Catholic source to a priest on behalf

> of a position that will never be accepted by the Church. What

> 222,678,398,790,101,258 "Catholic" Bible associations think about this or that

> is not binding to anyone. Their points don't add anything to Heidi's letter.

> They only make me wonder why they feel the need to change the practice and

> teaching of the Catholic Church. I'm sure they're good and sincere people,

> however. Catechetics is such an aching need in the Church today, no?


> In Christ Jesus,


> - Patrick