RCWP Canada Website | Eucharistic Communities | Ordinations | Contact | Search | Archives | Donate | Are you called to be a priest?
God Who is Very Different from the Almighty
David Augsburger, radicaldiscipleship.net | April 14, 2019
“Christ is not only God-like, but God is Christ-like,” Martin Luther King Jr. wrote in Strength to Love (1963).
The Christian gospel proclaims a God who is very different from “the Almighty,” the historic God among all the gods who is, by trusted definition, an omnipotent paragon of ultimate invincible irresistible power.
The God of Jesus Christ, in Leonardo Boff’s phrase, is “weak in power but strong in love” (Cry of the Earth; Cry of the Poor).
World Day of Vocations - Courage to take a risk for God's promise
The Fourth Sunday of Easter is designated as the World Day of Vocations. This year the theme is “the courage to take a risk for God's promise.”
Mary of Nazareth is the prime example of one who risked her life to respond to the invitation to be the Mother of Jesus. She risked being stoned to death – the fate of women caught in adultery or pregnant outside of marriage.
In the early church women took a risk for the kin-dom Jesus proclaimed. They were leaders among the early followers of Jesus. Mary Magdalene, was a faithful and loving companion of Jesus who understood his message better than anyone else. She was witness to the resurrection and was sent by Christ, Apostle to the Apostles, with the news that Jesus is risen, that love is stronger than death. Phoebe, deacon of Cenchreae and Junia, the apostle, are among those commended in the Letter of Paul to the Romans. Lydia, was the leaders of a house church; and Prisca, with her husband, Aquila were missionaries with Paul as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles.
Over the centuries women have taken risks for God's promise. Most are anonymous among the “Cloud of Witnesses,” some were recognized by the church authorities and named saints. Four women have received the designation “Doctor of the Church” for their spiritual wisdom: St. Hildegard of Bingen, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Teresa of Avila, and St. Thérèse of Lisieux, who is also the patron saint of women’s ordination.
Today, women continue to take the risk that God's promise to them will also be fulfilled. Women are no longer accepting to be defined by the system of patriarchy that denies them a voice in saying who they are and what they are being called by God to be and to do. A system that denies that the call to ordination comes from God, not men. A system that sets artificial, male only parameters on the qualifications to be a priest. A system that does not recognize the equality of men and women baptized equally in Christ. When will the patriarchal authority of the church listen to the cries for justice from the women who are oppressed and suppressed by proprietary attitudes and actions that reserve God's call to men rather that allow the gifts of the Spirit conferred in Baptism and Confirmation fall fully and freely on everyone.
The latest statement by Pope Francis is, "I cannot make a sacramental decree [on women deacons] without a theological, historical foundation." as he handed a copy of the report from the study commission on women deacons to the 850 religious of the International Union of Superiors General.
The response of the Women's Ordination Conference is:
“The 'theological, historical foundation' exists in abundance, thanks to the work of scholars like Dr. Phyllis Zagano, Dr. Gary Macy, Dr. Dorothy Irvin, Dr. Hans Wijngaards, Sr. Christine Schenk, and others. Holding women deacons to an impossible standard of historical consistency that is not used for other elements of our tradition is out of line with the essentially Catholic belief in development of doctrine.
"Women have been protagonists in the history of our faith since the time of the Gospels. We do not need to prove our sacramentality. The ability of our bodies to manifest revelation is not up for debate.
"And while we welcome study that leads to conversation and openness to where the Spirit is calling the Church, we will not wait for further evidence for what we already know: Women are called by God and their communities to be deacons and priests.”
Sunday, May 12, is Vocations Sunday, the day that the institutional Church, above all, prays for men to hear and respond to their call to the diaconate, priesthood, or religious life. Again, this year we ask, “Where are the women?”
They are standing outside – ready, willing, and CALLED to serve as priests. Women around the world are taking the risk that God's promise to them will be fulfilled.
And so we pray:
God Who Knows No Boundaries,
As our church gathers to pray for vocations to the priesthood,
We challenge them with the question, “Where are the women?”
We know that you see and empower the women who live out their vocations -
To baptize, to reconcile, to confirm in the faith;
To preach, to marry, and to anoint the sick;
To consecrate the Eucharist.
You see and empower the women living boldly and prophetically
The call to priesthood -
Which is a call to loving service,
To gathering the Body of Christ and sending it forth to live the Gospel.
You see and empower the women who live in paradox:
Called, but oppressed by patriarchy;
Faithful, but fed up;
Baptized, yet barred from ordained ministry.
Thank you for giving us eyes to see this truth:
People of all genders are called to ordained ministry, serving Your people.
When we ask, “Where are the women?”
You give us a ready answer:
They are here, among us, empowered by your Spirit.
May our Church see them, name them, and welcome them as equals. Amen.
[Women's Ordination Worldwide - 2019]
[Jane Kryzanowski, Regina, SK is bishop for RCWP Canada]
Look up at the altar, where are the women?
Phyllis Zagano, ncronline.org | Apr 22, 2019
If you had the chance to attend Holy Week services in person or via television — and I hope you did — you probably noticed the more things change, the more they stay the same. It's a men's church.
The clerics — all vested — are in the sanctuary or at least up front. The rest of us are far away.
Keeping the faithful at a distance was a hallmark of medieval Catholicism, so much so that St. Francis of Assisi tried to do something about it. Unable to bring the people closer to the celebration, he gave them the Gospel. His attitude, still flowering in the world, helps faithful folks assimilate the uncomfortable truth: they cannot be near the sacred. Especially women.
M. Shawn Copeland's retirement is a time to celebrate this friend of God
Daniel P. Horan, ncronline.org | May 1, 2019
This past weekend, Boston College hosted a conference on campus honoring the career and scholarly accomplishments of theologian M. Shawn Copeland, who is retiring from the Jesuit university's Theology Department at the end of this academic year. The event brought together colleagues, former students and others touched by the life and work of this extraordinary thinker, scholar, teacher and Christian disciple.
The breadth and depth of her remarkable oeuvre are hard to summarize in the limited space of a column. Nevertheless, I want to take this occasion to highlight at least a few of the many reasons you should know and read her work.
Youtube Video: Hope for Today from Three Doctors of the Church -- Saints Catherine, Teresa, and Thérèse
Presenter: Catherine M. Mooney.
This lecture explores the ways in which three women Doctors of the Church give us reason to hope for the Church and world. They are St. Catherine of Siena, a Dominican Tertiary, and Carmelites St. Teresa of Avila and St.Thérèse of Lisieux. Sponsored by the Boston College's School of Theology and Ministry.
Women and Earth are 'on receiving end of patriarchy' when it comes to profit
Chris Herlinger, globalsistersreport.org | April 22, 2019
Sr. Cynthia Mathew, who represents the Congregation of Jesus at the United Nations, was joined at a February 19th event at the United Nations by Sr. Winifred Doherty, U.N. representative of the Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd and Bhumika Muchhala, an independent policy analyst and consultant on development economics, global governance and international political economy issues.
Would the world be a better place if women had more say about the global economy?
It's a question posed regularly when sisters and representatives of nongovernmental organizations gather at the United Nations and discuss how best to tackle the challenges of global poverty and gender inequality, such as during the recent meetings of U.N.'s Commission for Social Development and Commission on the Status of Women.
Ill treatment not just aimed at woman editor but at all women who get out of line with men in power
Nora Bolcon, Special to The Review | May 15, 2019
I just read your article on 'Women Church World, L'Osservatore Romano's women's magazine, will continue "without clericalism of any kind," even that wielded by certain women'. The article nagged at me and I think I now know why.
I do not agree with what this editor, Lucetta Scaraffia believes on most topics in the church, especially her being against women's ordination to priesthood. However, I am not going to pretend, and I don't believe anyone should pretend that Pope Francis would have allowed a women who agreed with women priests, or gay marriage, etc. ever being allowed to be head editor on any Vatican media outlet. So I feel the need to point out RCWP readers that her ill treatment was not feigned. I do believe her maltreatment was a complete act of sexist anger, by our pope, towards her and her boss.
It is easy to forget that the women of this paper were attacked, and that their paper was deconstructed from what it had been, in under just 6 months, and right after they publicized the article on the nuns being raped and how they had been abused for decades in France and elsewhere, like in Africa. This paper reported that the violence and oppression of nuns by priests and bishops in France and Africa had been known by Pope Francis and our last several popes. This article brought up that these issues had been previously reported, and yet our last few popes had done nothing about it for many years. After this article other articles arose to support the abuse had been going on with the Vatican's knowledge for decades.
Do we truly find it coincidental that Pope Francis who felt he had to embarrassingly, and finally own the nun abuse happened, and is still happening suddenly sacks the head of this women's paper? After this story comes out publicly and he feels he must apologize for it and express there will be action to cure it in the future, and coincidently he then comes up with an excuse to suddenly rip the main boss of this paper from her job, and then puts a completely inexperienced, layman, who is no more than a high school teacher, in her place? What can anyone make of this action other than it is a reaction and revenge? This was an obvious insult to oth these women on our pope's part. Sometimes irritating women are genuinely abused, and we overlook their abuse claim because they are irritating or we don't agree with them but in doing so we lose site of the fact that this abuse was not just aimed at that woman but at all women who get out of line with men in power.
[Nora Bolcon, Pawtucket, RI, is a frequent contributor to The Review.]
I wish to comment on the choice of using Crux for anything. This media venue is now owned by The Knights of Columbus. These men are highly sexist and ultra conservative, for the most part, which is why they won't let women be Knights.
Practically, the second after, the Knights bought Crux from the Boston Globe, a few years ago, they made it into just another propaganda engine for conservative catholic men to pretend they are giving an unbiased report of events in the church. Yet Crux's reporting now is almost always amounts to a highly pasteurized result with Pope Francis always justified in his lack of concern on certain issues, and especially on women's equality and ordination in our church. I would recommend not using this outlet at all.
As for the youth, they are not at all happy with the Pope's refusal to concretely deal with women's ordination to priesthood and beyond, or of the voiceless place women have in our church, which Pope Francis has done virtually nothing to change, including the no women votes allowed at the Youth Synod while there were lay male votes allowed.
[Unsigned Message to the Editor via the Cognito form at the bottom of each issue of The Review. Users of the form have the option to sign their names or not.]
Editor's Note: John L. Allen Jr for many years was Vatican Correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter. At Cruxnow.com, About Crux, the following is stated:
"We were launched as a project of the Boston Globe in September 2014, and we struck out on our own on April 1, 2016. At the time it seemed a slightly risky thing to do, but today Crux is better and stronger than ever.
"Our aim is to be a “one-stop-shopping” destination for the best in Catholic news, analysis and commentary. We’re supported by both by our advertisers and by a number of other Catholic organizations, institutions and individuals."
One of the Catholic organizations supporting Crux is the Knights of Columbus. Although probably a major supporter, the K of C does not own Crux. I recall when John Allen left the Boston Globe and "struck out on our own" and obtained K of C funding, he vowed to keep his editorial independence.
The editorial policy of The Review is to publish articles and letters especially writen for The Review amd to link to aricles pertaining to "a renewed ordained ministry in a renewed Roman Catholic Church." We are careful about what we chose.
Honest Rituals..... by Joseph Martos "...We should celebrate the sacrament of ordination not as the according of miraculous powers to an individual but as the communal recognition of those who have the skills needed for ministry — preaching, administration, counselling, governance..." My question is: What is really the role of a priest? I am not saying that we do not need priests, but the skills that Martos lists do not necessarily need the "sacrament of ordination" as I see it.
[Marie Cerny, Toronto, ON]
Editor's Note: Jane Kryzanowski wrote several articles published in The Review relating to "What is really the role of a priest?"
Our Lady of Guadalupe Tonantzin Community, Vancouver, BC supports solidarity with Muslim communities
Editor, Special to The Review | May 15, 2019
Jan Constantinescu photo
The Interfaith Institute for Justice, Peace and Social Movements, Vancouver, BC, recently sponsored a gathering to show solidarity with Muslim communities.
It was emphasized in a panel discussion that in the current climate of ever escalating Islamophobic and white supremacist violence on a mass scale, it’s absolutely critical to amplify the voices of Muslim communities facing systemic oppression globally. More than ever, tangible solidarity is essential.
Jan Constantinescu and Rev. Dr. Vikki Marie attended this panel discussion on behalf of Our Lady of Guadalupe Tonantzin Community, an intentional faith community served by a priest of Roman Catholic Women Priests Canada.
Vatican newspaper appoints new editorial board for women's magazine
Carol Glatz, ncronline.org | April 30, 2019
The Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, named Italian journalist Rita Pinci as new director and head of the editorial board for its women's magazine, "Women-Church-World."
The announcement came a little more than one month after the magazine's founder and former director, Lucetta Scaraffia, resigned along with her editorial staff, claiming a lack of trust and support from the new management at the newspaper.
Curial reform and the place of women -- The pope has a chance to finally make a major change -- Will he?
Robert Mickens, international.la-croix.com | April 26, 2019
Pope Francis and his small group of cardinal-advisors have apparently completed their major overhaul of the Roman Curia – an ambitious and complicated project that was begun in the autumn of 2013, shortly after the election of the first-ever Latin American and Jesuit pope.
A recent article in Spanish – which papal biographer Austen Ivereigh has nicely re-capped and analyzed – claims that the new constitution for the curia will diminish the role of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and catapult the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (which is to be joined with the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization) as the most important "dicastery" of the Vatican.
We're waiting on the decision about women deacons
Tom Roberts, ncronline.org | Apr 24, 2019
Will he or won't he?
That's the question being asked in some circles as the date approaches for the pope's appearance at this year's May 6-10 meeting of the International Union of Superiors General (UISG), the leaders of the world's congregations of Catholic women religious.
Every three years the group meets in Rome, and during the last gathering, in answer to a question from the group, Pope Francis agreed that it would be good to appoint a commission to study the history of women deacons.
One pope is quite enough
NCR Editorial Staff, ncronline.org | April 22, 2019
We are living in a unique moment in church history with an ex-pope, properly credited for having the courage to resign when the problems he faced became overwhelming, living within the Vatican walls. The resignation is best interpreted as Benedict XVI's act of generosity toward the church. The graciousness Francis has displayed toward his predecessor is equally an act of generosity.
Increasingly, however, Francis must also be calling on the virtue of patience to deal with the interference of a predecessor whose retirement has gone from a promised "life dedicated to prayer" to a life of backseat pontificating.
Catholic Women Preach
Acts 13:14, 43-52
Ps 100:1-2, 3, 5
Rev 7:9, 14b-17
Jn 10:27-30Click here for Sunday Readings
Ps 145:8-9, 10-11, 12-13
Jn 13:31-33a, 34-35
Click here for Sunday Readings
The simple way men can help fight misogyny
Mike Sholars, broadview.org | April 25, 2019
Men need to start doing their part in identifying and fighting a culture of sexual assault so it’s not a burden entirely carried by women, says the writer.
“Mary Magdalene” Saves My Lent
Mike Rivage-Seul, mikerivageseul.wordpress.com | April 23, 2019
I didn’t feel good about my Lent this year – until Holy Week. I don’t know why, but my heart just wasn’t in it till then. However, beginning on what used to be called Holy Week’s “Spy Wednesday,” a whole series of events unfolded that returned me to the spirit that should have characterized the previous 40 days. Its highlight was experiencing an extraordinary film that I want to recommend here. It’s called simply “Mary Magdalene.” It raises questions about women’s leadership in today’s Catholic Church.
|RCWP Canada Website Links
Are you called to be a priest?
Francis Comic Strip Archive
Downloadable books and book-length articles
Catechism of the Catholic Church
Code of Canon Law
Vatican II Documents
Vatican II Voice of the Church
Voices of Faith
Salt + Light Television
Sunday Liturgy Preparation -- St. Louis University
National Catholic Reporter
Global Sisters Report
Catholic Women Preach
Women's Ordination Conference
Women's Ordination Worldwide
Média indépendant, Présence - information religieuse
Independent Media, Presence - religious information
Femmes et Ministères
Women and Ministries
RCWP Canada at Facebook
RCWP Canada at Twitter