Thursday, October 28, 2010

Our St Mary: More likely to pray for vocations than to challenge for women "priests"

Dr Laura Beth Bugg (a lecturer in sociology of religion at the University of Sydney) writes in the Sydney Morning Herald:
This past week a woman was ordained a Catholic priest in Canada. The church did not sanction her ordination, and she will shortly be excommunicated. Roman Catholic Womenpriests, a movement for women's ordination that began in 2002, supervised the ordination. Since that time nearly 100 women worldwide have been ordained, although none have been recognised by the church.

These are not women who wish to break off from the church; they want to reimagine it. There are yet other Catholic feminists who understand the very concept of priesthood and the hierarchical structure of the church as fatally flawed. They do not wish to see women as priests, but to see the entire Catholic community as one that is radically democratic and committed to peace-making, justice and community building.

...Perhaps the legacy of St Mary and others like her who have spoken out boldly and faithfully will be to inspire new generations to speak to the structures of hierarchy and patriarchy that choke the church and countless other religious institutions.

Dr Bugg attempts in this article to use (abuse?) St Mary of the Cross MacKillop for her cause. As she herself points out, St Mary wisely advised: "Never see a need without doing something about it". But I am confident that, rather than trying to "reimagine the Church", St Mary was and is more likely to follow Jesus' own directions, as he said: "The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest."

18 Comments:

At Thursday, October 28, 2010 2:31:00 am , Anonymous Peter Golding said...

It was always going to be only a matter of time before the "What would Mary have done?"wagons started to roll.Stand by for many more from rabbles like the wimmin priests brigade.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 2:48:00 am , Anonymous Harry said...

I seen the ordination of women in the ELCA and how it led to the ordination of homosexuals. Error always leads to more error. Charles Porterfield Krauth said that Error creeps into the Church in three stages. First, it tell Truth that it will not make waves, jut leave it be. Second, Error tells Truth, that their position should have equal rights. Then Error tells Truth that Truth is causing disorder in the Church. This is the reason why I went to the LC-MS.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 2:48:00 am , Anonymous Cherub said...

The call to discipleship is to "Take up my Cross and follow me", NOT "Take up my Church and reimagine it"! St Mary of the Cross took up the Cross for goodness sakes and was obedient to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Dr Bugg is misusing the life and example of St Mary of the Cross in her attempt to defend the theologically independent. The Church which Christ left us has a constitution, and that constitution provides for an all-male priesthood. The Magisterium in its fidelity to Christ, and its humility, is not in the business of "reimagining" the Gospel thereby making up a new Gospel. The Magisterium, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is protecting the one true Church which The God/Man Jesus actually gave us. And St Mary of the Cross willingly and lovingly followed the definitive teachings of the Magisterium. Moreover, she was far more interested in living a religious life and caring for the needs of the poor than jet-setting around the world pandering to the neurosis of the well paid middle classes who seem to have nothing else to do but "reimagine their navels".

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 3:15:00 am , Anonymous Schütz said...

Ah, Krauth. This is not the first time he has been cited on these pages (sometimes - only sometimes - I miss Past Elder!). He was so right on this one.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 7:17:00 am , Anonymous Matthias said...

i trained as a sociologist and joined the Australian Sociological Association but left because of the absolute crap that was being written ie "The lived experiences of ... " "reimagining a ....."
mAKES me want to puke onto their thesis. I am afraid that Australia is going to become a femonazified,green paganised, pacified country where hedonism and personal peace and affluence rule.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 8:34:00 am , Anonymous Peter Golding said...

That is if we are not there already Matthias.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 10:50:00 am , Anonymous Christine said...

C.P. Krauth was one of my heroes when I was Lutheran. Still is.

I think he would have much to say to the ELCA and the misguided Catholic "feminists" who want to create the Church in their own image.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 1:25:00 pm , Anonymous joyfulpapist said...

I see comments are closed on the article you linked to, David. I hope someone challenged the woman's view that the Church teaches women can't be priests because Eve was responsible for original sin. Has she actually read Inter Insigniores, the Papal Encyclical that outlines the actual reasons?

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 9:25:00 pm , Anonymous Schütz said...

Yes, I thought that was a bit off. It seemed to be a reference to 1 Tim 2:14 which is a common enough argument among some conservative evangelical churches, but is never cited as a Catholic reason for not ordaining women. It also seemed as if she was looking for a "reason" that most of her readers would think was obviously ridiculous, and would therefore conclude that the Catholic practice of ordaining men only was built on flimsy theology.

 
At Thursday, October 28, 2010 10:01:00 pm , Anonymous Father John Fleming said...

Inter Insigniores is not a Papal Encyclical. It was, in fact, a Declaration on the Admission of Women to the Ministerial Priesthood (15 October 1976) issued by the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

 
At Friday, October 29, 2010 11:06:00 pm , Anonymous Tony said...

... femonazified ...

In my 'imaginings' I can see those who were so critical of Mary -- including the priests -- using a term like this!

 
At Friday, October 29, 2010 11:17:00 pm , Anonymous Schütz said...

Well, precisely. But remember that it is Dr Bugg is the one suggesting this, not us or the Church. Which isn't to say that some Christians in the past (and even some still today) don't use this argument, but it is not one of the Church's reasons for not ordaining women.

 
At Saturday, October 30, 2010 2:31:00 am , Anonymous Gareth said...

But it is a fair analogy.

 
At Saturday, October 30, 2010 2:35:00 am , Anonymous Tony said...

I'd put it on the same level, albeit from a different direction, as 'reimagine the Church'.

But that's just me.

;-)

 
At Saturday, October 30, 2010 4:58:00 am , Anonymous Gareth said...

Youre a 'mystery'

 
At Saturday, October 30, 2010 6:04:00 am , Anonymous Tony said...

Point taken, David.

 
At Monday, November 01, 2010 10:02:00 pm , Anonymous Gareth said...

To my amazement, she was also gave counsel to her sisters to never ever let a bad word about a Catholic priest fall from one's lips.

I am not sure if St Mary would heed the same advice if she could come back to earth today, but it is interesting spiritual counsel.

 
At Wednesday, November 03, 2010 5:48:00 pm , Anonymous Tony said...

Pax,

My understanding is that Mary didn't 'stand up to' any Bishop. Not only did she counsel 'her sisters to remain respectful and obedient' she made it clear that she loved them.

So, again, while I don't challenge the phrase 'faithful to the magisterium' at all -- she was faithful almost to a fault -- the way she went about her vocation was a challenge to the magisterium (to the extent that it was represented by local bishops). I believe that bishops and priests with limited vision would have seen her as a rebel.

But, again, none of these descriptions do justice to the whole Mary story.

 

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