How does one charitibly, gently, but firmly defend the Church's stance against priestesses?

I’m involved in another forum’s discussion on the CC’s stance against women’s ordination and how (supposedly monolithic) “catholic” theologians say the Church is wrong theologicaly and historicaly. While I have some information on this matter already, I need anyone elses’ insight’s and data.

Thanks in advance!

I think the underlining issue here are the concepts of infallibility and dogma. People who believe that female priests can and should be allowed do not agree with infallibility. They also don’t agree with or understand that the Church is the Body of Christ. If they did, they would understand that that the Church has already taught this infallibly and it can’t change.

I think you need to start there. Because the basic point is, we don’t know why Christ didn’t the full reasons why Christ didn’t pick women to be ordained. But the fact is that He didn’t and only Christ (who the Church belongs to) can change Dogma.

Theoretically, allowing woman to become priests would destroy the Church. Not because they are women, but because it would destroy the Church’s teaching regarding Dogma. It would set the prescient that Dogma can be changed, which it cannot be. It would also destroy the infallibility of the Church. If you could change female priesthood, then why not change the Dogma regarding the Trinity or the Sacraments…

Hope this helps.

The first point that must be made clear is the church is not “against” the ordination of women. The catholic church does not have authority to ordenate women which is completely different than being “against.” Blessed john Paul II explained this very well. The church cannot ordain women because they don’t have authority to do it. Priest ordination comes directly from orders of Jesus Christ and Jesus did not ordain any women, despite having had many women as followers. He only ordained 12 men so just like any other doctrinal issue that the church cannot change because it was established by Jesus, the church cannot ordain women because lacks authority to do it.

An argument that many people like to make is that Jesus didn’t do it because of cultural circumstances. That argument is plain silly. The last thing Jesus did was to “follow” cultural tendencies. Jesus broke local laws right on the face of pharisees without any fear (and that is why pharisees hates him) so saying that Jesus didn’t do it because of the culture shows a lack of knowledge about Jesu’s ministry.

I don’t know what other “theologians” argue to say the church is wrong. Probably if you mention the specific argument is better but what I just told is the basics of the church position.

That part about “charitably, gently, but firmly” is dependent entirely on your attitude. You can use the best arguments but it’s your attitude that determines whether you’re perceived as charitable and firm or snide and wishy-washy. Peter Kreeft gives an excellent talk about why the Church will never ordain priestesses. Much of it involves Catholic spirituality, such as the Church being the bride of Christ. Non-Catholics will have trouble understanding it, if they even try.

Or that the Church really is, as Scripture tells us, the Bride of Christ.

I wonder how many people who believe that women can and should be ordained, also believe that same-sex “marriage” can and should be allowed by the Church?

correct, thanks for adding that.

I wonder how many people who believe that women can and should be ordained, also believe that same-sex “marriage” can and should be allowed by the Church?

I would venture to guess a high percentage of them.

I was looking for a good article by Joanna Bogle and came across this site which has a link to it. I haven’t had time to look at all the articles but I recognise the names of some of the contributors who look okay.

Hope it helps.

Yes it does! :thumbsup:


From my casual observations, there is a very high correlation for people who support priestesses promoting things which are also opposed to other dogmaticaly declared teachings of the Church–like abortion, artificial contraception, divorce and re-marriage, etc,

That’s been my observation too. They’re the same people that insist that the church “keep up with the times”.

I also blogged about this a while back. :o

Christ, the bridegroom: Why a priest must be male

That’s just one reason. But I also want to emphasize what marymary1975 said above. The Church is not “against” a female ordained priest anymore than the Church is “against” males naturally gestating babies or “against” 3 sided objects being rectangles. You can’t really be “against” an impossibility.

Ok, still researching the subject, but one of the priestess advocates hs posted these things:

“In 1975, the Canon Law Society of America declared that there was no theological reason why women could not be ordained, and the next year the Pontifical Biblical Commission decided that nothing in the New Testament made it clear that women could not be priests.”

The following is from the URL in the OP.

<<The study argues, for example, that the majority opinion among biblical scholars is that Jesus chose men as his Twelve Apostles for ‘‘their symbolic role as ‘patriarchs’ of restored Israel’’ and not because he meant them to be prototypes of the ordained priestly ministers whose offices were defined much later in the church’s history.

The study recognizes that traditionally women were not ordained as priests or bishops but says the argument that the traditional practice is decisive is open to question in this case because so much of it, including many of the ancient writers cited in Vatican documents, was based on the conviction, which the church now rejects, of female inferiority.>>

So, are these coming from ultra-liberal theologians just flat out determied to destroy the Magesterium at every opportunity?

Their web site only says that they are " a professional association dedicated to the promotion of both the study and application of canon law in the Catholic Church." Needless to say, they do not speak for the Vatican.

Mybfirat reply to the idea that jesus choose men for their symbolic role is that that is not what Jesus said. Jesus in the bible institutes priesthood very explicitly on the last supper. Now I am sorry because my bible is not in English as English is not my first language and I am translating directly from the Spanish version but Jesus words were Do this in commemoration of me. That wording seems very clear and does not reflect any symbolic role. Is an order that institutes the Eucharist and he his mandating those twelve men to act in his name on the Eucharist. By those words Jesus indeed ordained them as ministers and the church has continued with the same traditions.

To me what those groups are is I want what I want and they are just trying to push against the church through coming with these arguments to confuse the majority of laity.

This article doesn’t cite anything said by the Church. What exactly was the statement they claim means there is no “theological” basis for a male ordained priesthood? They claim there are “theologians” who don’t think JP2 declared on this infallibly. This is what JP2 said in 1994 in Ordinatio Sacerdotalis:*Wherefore, in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church’s divine constitution itself, in virtue of my ministry of confirming the brethren (cf. Lk 22:32) I declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church’s faithful.*That statement has all the features of an infallibly declared papal statement as defined at Vatican I. He is speaking as a function of his Petrine office by citing his ministry extending to Luke 22. He is speaking on a matter of faith or morals. And he is speaking on a doctrine to be held by “all” the faithful. This is not a vague statement. “Theologians” who pretend there is still debate are either ignorantly or deliberately ignoring this. As well, since JP2 made that statement, both Pope Benedict and Pope Francis have confirmed that JP2 defined this matter under the charism of infallibility.

We can be charitable when trying to explain this doctrine to others, especially in a world which blurs the qualities of the genders and often defines discrimination as anything that involves difference. I think it helps to point out how women can gestate babies. That is an example in the physical world we can see that helps us understand the invisible reality that only a male can bear the natural resemblance to Christ the bridegroom that is demanded by a sacrament. And therefore, just as it is not discrimination against men to acknowledge that only women, by nature, can have babies, so too is it not discrimination to acknowledge that only men are able to represent Christ in the sacrament of the priesthood.

I gave this answer previously #9 , but I don’t think the internal links were read. So I’ll pull apart the internal links.

Then Pope JPII wrote (all emphasis mine)

“4. Although the teaching that priestly ordination is to be reserved to men alone has been preserved by the constant and universal Tradition of the Church and firmly taught by the Magisterium in its more recent documents, at the present time in some places it is nonetheless considered still open to debate, or the Church’s judgment that women are not to be admitted to ordination is considered to have a merely disciplinary force.”

So to remove all further discussion and debate in (“some places”) as if the issue was still open, which it isn’t, JPII continues

(all emphasis mine)

“Wherefore, in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church’s divine constitution itself, in virtue of my ministry of confirming the brethren (cf. Lk 22:32) I declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church’s faithful.”

That teaching is an infallible teaching based on the language the pope used. This has come up before #60

Plus then Card Ratzinger wrote this

(again, all emphasis mine)

“This teaching requires definitive assent, since, founded on the written Word of God, and from the beginning constantly preserved and applied in the Tradition of the Church, it has been set forth infallibly by the ordinary and universal Magisterium (cf. Second Vatican Council, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium 25, 2). Thus, in the present circumstances, the Roman Pontiff, exercising his proper office of confirming the brethren (cf. Lk 22:32), has handed on this same teaching by a formal declaration, explicitly stating what is to be held always, everywhere, and by all, as belonging to the deposit of the faith.”

It doesn’t get clearer than that.

To further make the point, Pope Francis excommunicates a priest

The case is closed.

Steve & Marco:

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Though personaly I wish Blessed John Paul had EXPLICITLY said this IS “ex cathedra”–the dissidents and heretics would still be spouting their nonsense but they would not have the slightest amount of wriggle room, other than attacking the dogmatic however narrrowly defined charism of Papal infallibility itself (which they do) :mad:.

Regarding the parallels of those who want “catholic” priestesses and those who want other impossibilities, I’m reminded from this scene from 1979:

*“STAN (Idlle): I want to be a woman. From now on, I want you all to call me ‘Loretta’. *
*REG: What?! *
*LORETTA: It’s my right as a man. *
*JUDITH: Well, why do you want to be Loretta, Stan? *
*LORETTA: I want to have babies. *
*REG (Cleese): You want to have babies?! *
*LORETTA: It’s every man’s right to have babies if he wants them. *
*REG: But… you can’t have babies. *
*LORETTA: Don’t you oppress me. *
*REG: I’m not oppressing you, Stan. You haven’t got a womb! Where’s the foetus going to gestate?! You going to keep it in a box?! *
*LORETTA: crying *
*JUDITH: Here! I-- I’ve got an idea. Suppose you agree that he can’t actually have babies, not having a womb, which is nobody’s fault, not even the Romans’, but that he can have the right to have babies. *
*FRANCIS (Palin): Good idea, Judith. We shall fight the oppressors for your right to have babies, brother. Sister. Sorry. *
*REG: What’s the point? *
*FRANCIS: What? *
*REG: What’s the point of fighting for his right to have babies when he can’t have babies?! *
*FRANCIS: It is symbolic of our struggle against oppression. *
*REG: Symbolic of his struggle against reality.” *

*–*Monty Python’s Life of Brian

:tiphat:glad it helped

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