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  #1  
Old Mar 19, '06, 2:50 pm
maximus maximus is offline
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Default Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Hi,

At a mens prayer group, that I belong to, someone mentioned something about female Bishops. I asked this person for a remotely credible source on this, but I expect not get the source for this. Does anyone have any idea where this person might be coming up with this stuff. A little of the information I know about this person is that he is into Fr. Hans Kung; which is a sort of nuff said and leave it at that kind of a thing. However, I am curious where people come up with this stuff.

God Bless,
  #2  
Old Mar 19, '06, 2:58 pm
John_Henry John_Henry is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximus
At a mens prayer group, that I belong to, someone mentioned something about female Bishops. I asked this person for a remotely credible source on this, but I expect not get the source for this. Does anyone have any idea where this person might be coming up with this stuff. A little of the information I know about this person is that he is into Fr. Hans Kung; which is a sort of nuff said and leave it at that kind of a thing. However, I am curious where people come up with this stuff.
Your response was the perfect one. Reference, please. Too many people say dumb things for us to searching after everything. Suffice to say, of course, there were none.

And I thought the early church was supposed to be way patriarchal and misogynistic. Can't have it both ways, Hans.
  #3  
Old Mar 19, '06, 3:11 pm
JSmitty2005 JSmitty2005 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

This simply isn't true. The only possible reference I've seen of women being leaders in the early Church is when the Fathers mention "deaconesses." But that's not even as it sounds. A "deaconess" was NOT a female deacon. Deaconesses were the WIVES of deacons.
  #4  
Old Mar 19, '06, 3:13 pm
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Nicene Nicene is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Apostle means messenger. However when for example Paul sent a "messenger" with his letters the same word is used. So people try to elevate the meaning of the second one as being a true apostle.

For clarity sake the Apostles properly were Christs/Gods messengers.

Messengers (for those who try to stretch the meaning beyond it's intent) from Paul were just that, messengers from Paul. They are not properly Gods messengers in the apostolic distinctive.

Where your friend gets bishops I have an inkling (again he is stretching). It goes against Pauls other teachings. But you can tell us after he lets you know.

Peace and God Bless
Nicene
  #5  
Old Mar 19, '06, 3:30 pm
Catholic2003 Catholic2003 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

From Inter Insigniores:

Quote:
The Catholic Church has never felt that priestly or episcopal ordination can be validly conferred on women. A few heretical sects in the first centuries, especially Gnostic ones, entrusted the exercise of the priestly ministry to women: this innovation was immediately noted and condemned by the Fathers, who considered it as unacceptable in the Church.
  #6  
Old Mar 19, '06, 3:42 pm
Fredricks Fredricks is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by JSmitty2005
This simply isn't true. The only possible reference I've seen of women being leaders in the early Church is when the Fathers mention "deaconesses." But that's not even as it sounds. A "deaconess" was NOT a female deacon. Deaconesses were the WIVES of deacons.

I would be curious where you got your interpretation of the word
'Diakonos ".
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  #7  
Old Mar 19, '06, 3:47 pm
JSmitty2005 JSmitty2005 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fredricks
I would be curious where you got your interpretation of the word
'Diakonos ".
Huh? I was referring to the Church Fathers' references to deaconesses.

http://www.catholic.com/library/Wome...Priesthood.asp

A priest once told me that the deaconesses that they speak of were the wives of the deacons.
  #8  
Old Mar 19, '06, 6:00 pm
maximus maximus is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Thanks for the responses. So far it looks like the best case a person can make about female Bishops in the early Church is to reference a Gnostic sect.

God Bless!
  #9  
Old Mar 19, '06, 6:09 pm
JSmitty2005 JSmitty2005 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by maximus
Thanks for the responses. So far it looks like the best case a person can make about female Bishops in the early Church is to reference a Gnostic sect.

God Bless!
Yes. They certainly were NOT Catholic at all!
  #10  
Old Mar 19, '06, 6:21 pm
Fredricks Fredricks is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by JSmitty2005
Huh? I was referring to the Church Fathers' references to deaconesses.

http://www.catholic.com/library/Wome...Priesthood.asp

A priest once told me that the deaconesses that they speak of were the wives of the deacons.
I have heard Phebe referred to as such and thought that was what you were referring to. Sorry. The translation of Romans 16.1 has always been a source of contention for me and others because referring to her as a "servant", as opposed to a deacon, or deconesses ,as some of my brethren are prone to do, has always seemed to be indicitive of a pre-exisitng theological agenda.
Sorry again.
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  #11  
Old Mar 19, '06, 6:40 pm
JSmitty2005 JSmitty2005 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fredricks
I have heard Phebe referred to as such and thought that was what you were referring to. Sorry. The translation of Romans 16.1 has always been a source of contention for me and others because referring to her as a "servant", as opposed to a deacon, or deconesses ,as some of my brethren are prone to do, has always seemed to be indicitive of a pre-exisitng theological agenda.
Sorry again.
It's okay. Misunderstandings happen all the time. May God bless you.
  #12  
Old Mar 19, '06, 6:57 pm
Friar David, O.Carm Friar David, O.Carm is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by JSmitty2005
Huh? I was referring to the Church Fathers' references to deaconesses.

http://www.catholic.com/library/Wome...Priesthood.asp

A priest once told me that the deaconesses that they speak of were the wives of the deacons.

No, there we actual deaconesses but a deaconess is not a female deacon. They had their own role.

They existed in the days before uncloistered nuns. Their main role was assisting the priest within the cloister and assisting the priest when he baptized women. Baptism was done in the nude in those days and the deaconess would hold a cloth between the body of the woman being baptized and the priest.

They had some other roles but none of them were liturgical in nature. Again, they were not female deacons.
  #13  
Old Mar 19, '06, 8:45 pm
JSmitty2005 JSmitty2005 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by ByzCath
No, there we actual deaconesses but a deaconess is not a female deacon. They had their own role.

They existed in the days before uncloistered nuns. Their main role was assisting the priest within the cloister and assisting the priest when he baptized women. Baptism was done in the nude in those days and the deaconess would hold a cloth between the body of the woman being baptized and the priest.

They had some other roles but none of them were liturgical in nature. Again, they were not female deacons.
Thanks for the clarification.
  #14  
Old Mar 19, '06, 8:53 pm
Anonymous_1 Anonymous_1 is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

Quote:
Originally Posted by ByzCath
No, there we actual deaconesses but a deaconess is not a female deacon. They had their own role.

They existed in the days before uncloistered nuns. Their main role was assisting the priest within the cloister and assisting the priest when he baptized women. Baptism was done in the nude in those days and the deaconess would hold a cloth between the body of the woman being baptized and the priest.

They had some other roles but none of them were liturgical in nature. Again, they were not female deacons.
great response
heard the same one on CA Live the other day!
  #15  
Old Mar 19, '06, 9:05 pm
puzzleannie puzzleannie is offline
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Default Re: Female Bishops in the Early Church???

the other misunderstanding that leads to claims about female bishops arises from the fact that abbots, that is heads of religious orders, had in some times and places the same rank as bishops. They also had the authority of a bishop over their own congregations, therefore, an abbess was considered to have the same dignity, but not of course the episcopal character or the powers conferred through ordination. Nonetheless, some feminist writers have insisted that abbesses functioned as bishops, which is simply not borne out by history, although they did enjoy a wide authority within their congregations. St. Bridgid is often used as an example, since she did have a lot of authority in the early Irish Church, but in no way did she function as a bishop or excercise a priestly role.
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