Women Priests & American Catholics


From: Karen Kelleher

The American Catholic is at odds with the Vatican because we are the first nation to suceed based on a philosophy of governing that undermines the teachings of the church. The American government is not an oligarchy, like the Vatican. The United States of American is not an empire, kingdom or monarchy. The Civil Rights and birth control legislation passed over the last forty years directly challenges God's rule versus man's natural rights as a free-thinking independent individual.

The Ten Commandments, universally accepted by the Judea-Christian world, makes no mention of who shall lead those who believe in God. It is a false assumption to unilaterally state that women must not be priests. If the American Jewish faith accepts woman as Rabbi's why can't the American Catholics accept woman as priests.

It is prejudice, misogyny, patriarchy and other ancient Vatican interpretations of the Old Testament that rule the Pope's false assuptions. It is time that an American Catholic Church be established independent of the the Vatican. I plan to create a website that will support the reform of the Vatican not by attacking the Pope but by simply forming a voice that will capture the anger, outrage and perpetual subjugation of Cathlolic woman in their own religion.


Dear Karen,

Thank you for the e-mail. I don't imagine I can get you to change your mind, but I would like to ask you to consider a couple of things:

Back in the thirteenth century St. Thomas Aquinas had some positive things to say about democracy, "government pertains to all, because those who exercise authority can be chosen from all and are chosen by all. . . " Summa 1a 2ae, question 105, article first. It was Archbishop Stephen Langton who brought the King and barons together to form the Magna Carta. There were Catholics who signed the Declaration of Independence and fought in the Revolutionary War.

Within a healthy democratic society there are many hierarchies: hospitals, universities, police forces, businesses, families, etc. Until rather recently the only hospitals and universities not run by men were those operated by Catholic religious sisters. That is still pretty true regarding hospitals.

The pope made it clear the issue is not women's equal dignity (and in some ways greater dignity because of motherhood) but that the Church does not have authority from Jesus to ordain women. I prefer corn tortillas to wheat, but the former could never be valid matter for the Eucharist while (in a pinch) the latter could. Do you see what I mean?

Finally, Karen, if you do not accept the pope's authority, why form a separate "Catholic" Church? For those who believe in Jesus but do not believe he founded the Catholic Church, there are a myriad of Protestant churches. Some already have women priests.


Fr. Phil Bloom

P.S. The most common complaint about men that I hear from women is not that they are chafing under male oppression, but that they suffer because of male irresponsibility - and absence.

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