The Roman Catholic Church calls the ordination of Women a ‘Grave Crime’
The Vatican this week has released an updated list of what are known as ‘grave crimes’ against the Church, as well as updating its standards for legal limitations and procedures in pedophilia cases. While I applaud their extension of the statute of limitations to twenty years after the victim turns eighteen, as well extending the list of those persons eligible to serve on a Tribunal, I absolutely must disagree with their decision on the fate of those who ordain women and the women who choose to become ordained.
The mere fact that the two subjects were listed in the same document gives one the terrible feeling that doctrinally, the Vatican considers pedophilia and female priests on the same level. Personally I feel that not giving such a volatile issue the singular treatment it deserves is emblematic of the disregard the Vatican has all too often displayed to the feminine half of its’ congregation.
As a female minister, it is very difficult for me not to take this as a very personal insult. I have breasts and a uterus, and I have as rich a connection to the Divine as any male; in short, I too have a soul. I am not a second-class citizen of anything, including Paradise, and will not be treated as such. To accept such treatment would be to betray that soul within me and to deny my own worth in the eyes of my Creator.
I do recognize that the Roman Catholic Church is within its rights to emphasize its own traditions within its own structure. They claim that since Christ had no female followers that they have no right to ordain women to represent him in the Eucharist. I would point out that the Magdalene followed Jesus, as did his own mother, Mary, plus Johanna the wife Herod’s Steward, Chuza; Salome, the wives of the apostles, and those are the ones mentioned in the Gospels.
I can whine and nitpick as much as I like, but the fact remains that the Vatican will do as it sees fit, and at this time, they deny women the sacrament of ordination. That is their right and that cannot be disputed.
But it is not just. I have a certain fondness for the Catholic Church, since my mother was catholic. I am ashamed to see that they cannot find the grace to move on from an ancient prejudice and open themselves to include fully the half of the human race they have slighted for so many centuries. Their equation of female ordination with the actions of pedophiles saddens me, it angers me and it is an insult I have trouble even considering forgiving at this time.
The Church has relied for many centuries on the faith of wives and mothers, teaching their children its traditions and rituals. How would the Church react if those women chose not to continue to support an organization that does not accord them the true respect they deserve? How long would any religious organization survive if the women walked away?
It is a scandalous thought, but a fascinating one.
Find your peace, friends.