Monday, May 6, 2013

A Woman's "Ordination"

Recently, the worship space of St. Andrew's United Church of Christ was used, here in Louisville, for an 'ordination' of a female conducted by the "Association of 'Roman Catholic Woman Priests'." The quotes are not theirs, but since it is self-contradictory they are necessary.

The Courier-Journal covered this event in a piece by the religion writer.  My comments and emphases.

In defiance of Roman Catholic authority and doctrine [to which all men of good will, as baptized Christians, must be in service of], the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests ordained its first Louisville-area priest on Saturday.
Rosemarie Smead of Bedford, Ky., a retired Indiana University Southeast counselor-education professor, was ["]ordained["]during the two-hour service hosted by a ["]bishop["] of the movement, Bridget Mary Meehan.
Several other women priests in the movement, in white robes and red stoles, gathered from around the country to participate in a ceremony patterned on traditional Catholic ordination liturgy but suffused with feminist imagery. About 200 people attended the service at St. Andrew United Church of Christ, most of them coming forward to lay hands on Smead in blessing [So...how many people actually want these woman 'priests' who aren't already one?].
The Vatican [No, the Pope did. Let's not boil this down to politics, with this big, unchangeable, monolithic entity behind it.] has stated that as a matter of unchangeable doctrine, the Roman Catholic Church must follow the example of Jesus, who appointed only men as his apostles [Red was an interesting choice for stoles. It is the blood of the Passion and martyrs as well as the Holy Ghost. the Blessed Mother and Mary Magdalene were both present at Pentecost.].
It says anyone who participates in a ceremony purporting to ordain a woman is automatically excommunicated. Louisville Archbishop Joseph Kurtz reiterated that stance in a statement saying the association has no connection to the Roman Catholic Church and that Catholics should not support or participate in Saturday’s event. 
Janice Sevre-Duszynska of Lexington, Ky. [So now two bishops are involved.], a priest [You get the point. She is pretending to be a priest.] in the women’s ordination movement, gave opening remarks Saturday, saying there is archaeological and documentary evidence that the early church ordained women — interpretations that have been disputed by supporters of male-only ordination [Because it's dominated by patriarchy, surely. The Marxist lies got old fast.].
Meehan said the decade-old Women Priest movement is an act of justice defying what she called an unjust Vatican law [?]. She said the movement’s bishops were ordained by an unidentified bishop in communion with Rome. [That means squat. He could be an Old Catholic or a renegade Western-Rite Orthodox bishop, though the latter is less likely. A Roman bishop would be a bit more public about this.]
“Sexism in church and society is sinful and should always be challenged,” Meehan said. She said if women were in Catholic leadership, the church’s position against artificial birth control would be lifted [Eve sinned, Adam helped. Hence, a man has to redeem both men and women. Hence, his successors must be men. It has nothing to do with a plan to oppress women. Trust me, the most perfect woman on the planet didn't complain about not being a priest.]
The liturgy included invocations to numerous female Catholic saints, to God as mother and father [St. Paul warns us about not being able to call in the name of the Lord...this mother and Creator, Redeemer, Sanctifier nonsense is proof of this.] and to “Christ-Sophia,” [Can we get our agreement correct?] invoking a biblical term for divine wisdom that service leaders said reflects the feminine aspect of God.
After a series of solemn ordination vows, Smead prostrated herself before the altar for several minutes during quiet music and prayer [That would be the Litany of the Saints. Firstly, the woman can't get ordained. Secondly, when you have no intention of administering a sacrament as the Church does, it's invalid. Rejecting the liturgical formulas provided indicates you don't wish to be a priest of the order of Melchizedek in communion with Rome.]. Participants presented Smead with ceremonial vestments of priestly ministry, and Meehan anointed her hands with oil.
“You’re in for quite a spiritual adventure,” Meehan told Smead.
“It’s just so overwhelming,” Smead said afterward. Smead, who previously lived as a cloistered nun [Sad], marched for civil rights and worked for years with troubled youth in Alabama before a quarter-century career at IUS, said the ordination “just raised up 70 years of longing in me to be able to fulfill this [St. Therese stayed in the Carmel, because she figured out what the priesthood was for her as a wonderful young woman. And only women of a certain generation seek invalid ordination.]
Two of Smead’s former IUS students gave testimonials during the ordination, lauding her for providing career and personal guidance, and a niece, nephew and in-law of Smead read Scriptures.
The Rev. Jimmy Watson, pastor of St. Andrew, said the church agreed to host the service after considering a passage in the book of Acts in which the apostle Peter was told by God to bring the gospel to Gentiles.
“I knew there would be some pressure not to do something so illegal,” Watson said. “… We decided that we could not stand in God’s way.” [On whose authority do you declare that? And, there is some major cognitive dissonance going on.]

Ordinatio Sacerdotalis can be read here. This is infallible teaching. It's beautiful, so read it!

Roma locuta est, causa finita est. That is harsh, in a way, I think.  But the Church is open to all, provided you wish to be in the framework given by Jesus Christ through his Father.

Dr Peters tells us that the penalty for doing this is automatic excommunication. This follows his reports of what now-Cardinal Burke had to do, sadly, as archbishop of St Louis.
I would like to say that Abp. Raymond Burke's excommunication of three womenwho recently participated in a pseudo-ordination in Saint Louis is a "text-book illustration" of how (non-judicial) excommunication is supposed to be applied in the Church today, but I can't say that: Why not? Because Abp. Burke's attention to juridic details and his provisions for the pastoral care of the people entrusted to his care so exceed what the textbooks teach, that it is the textbooks that must copy from him, not him from the textbooks.

Read both articles.  Dr. Peters and Cardinal Burke are fine, fine thinkers and wonderful men pursuing holiness, as is my archbishop. Please pray for all of them, and that Archbishop Kurtz might copy the wonderful example set by Cardinal Burke.

5 comments:

  1. "Eve sinned, Adam helped. Hence, a man has to redeem both men and women. Hence, his successors must be men. It has nothing to do with a plan to oppress women. Trust me, the most perfect woman on the planet didn't complain about not being a priest."

    I honestly don't think it has anything to do with that. Sexual chastity was important in ancient societies. The Roman Empire had a law allowing for an adulterer to be stoned to death if the husband called for it. However, the husband could not call for it if his wife was involved in any public occupation (like shopkeeper for instance). The law even explicitly states "It is not possible to commit adultery with a shop-keeperress." That is, the Roman gov'ment would not acknowledge it as adultery because the woman was in a public occupation and hence, essentially in their view, her husband was basically 'asking for it.' That's the view of the ancient world: if you let your woman work in public, you are giving her tacit permission to be unfaithful to you. And I think this is the real reason women were forbidden from holding public position in church. And the fact is, the further we get in modern society where all our women work, the more and more infidelity and sexual depravity we see going on. It turns out the ancients weren't just sexist bigots: they had a deep and accurate understanding of human psychology.

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  2. Interesting. I mean, I do agree that women working and trying to be equal to men in all areas is not a good way of life.
    I was thinking here that Christ is the New Adam and the Blessed Virgin Mary is the New Eve. Eve sinned first as Adam watched. Thus, the redemption must come from Christ as the New Adam coming from the womb of the New Eve.

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    1. I got what you are saying. But I don't see where that would require the priests to be men. It requires Christ to be a man for sure. But honestly these sorts of explanations are to mythical\mystical for moderns to do anything but laugh at. And they can be taken to extremes: it had to be the cross to countepose the tree of good and evil, and the devil had to set the thing up to counterpose the serpent in the garden, and on an on. I'd rather stick with a rational argument, and I think Titus 2 is a good one.

      Titus 2:3 (ESV) "Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, 4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. 6 Likewise, urge the younger men to be self-controlled."

      Our whole society is in havok because this passage has been ignored. Its been ignored largely because of Augustine and the infussion of moronic faith-alonist nonsesne that living right is bad, and obviously Protestantism bears a great deal of the responsibility here for listening to that goober but so does Rome. Thanks to faith-alonism these sorts of passages that regulate this life are ignored and the result is an unruly promiscious youth which begets more and more of the same until every moral foundation of society is destroyed.

      Because the baby boomer women didn't teach their daughters to love their husbands and be workers at home, but instead taught them to wear the pants, go to work, sleep around....therefore the whole question of female ordination has come up. Women have a right to do everything that the Bible says they don't...that's what the older women taught the younger rather than teaching them to love their husbands and their children.

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    2. And in that passage I quoted, I hadn't even noticed the not "slaves to much wine" part. Women today drink as much as if not more than men. Recently some federal organization in the US has begun recommending that the states lower the maximum blood alcohol limit from 0.08 to 0.05 and the drunks are in a tizzy because your average woman would reach that limit after just one beer! (Oh my!) Maybe women shouldn't be out at the bars drinking and trolling for manwhores anyway. That's what's wrong with our society.

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    3. Well, Christ is the eternal High Priest, and so his priests must be like him.
      Yes, I agree that moderns can't figure this out: it's all about narrative-construction in history and English, and so they can't comprehend Aristotelian mimesis as a framework for viewing a real-world situation. To them, male-only ordination is a product of patriarchy.
      Really interesting insight. Reminds me of the quote from Archbishop Sheen which points out that a society can be measured by its women.

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