Sacrament of Holy Orders (Can Women Be Ordained)


I stumbled upon a youtube video about the “Liberal Catholic Church”, I guess a schismatic branch seperated from Rome who ordain women?

This is strictly a theological question here. Is it possible that the sacrament of Holy Orders * can even* be conferred on women? I know the Church at the present time and always has stated that only men are allowed to the priesthood, but would it even be physically/metaphysically or what ever, is it even possible? Would the bread and wine that one of these female priest “consecrate” really be consecrated?


Two chimpanzees are not capable of marriage. Neither are two women. Neither is a woman capable of representing Christ at the wedding with His Church. So no, a woman may not be ordained as a priest. The bread and wine would become female flesh and blood, assuming that the consecration was actually effective.


Volumes have been written by feminist thinkers on the tendency of Western culture to value spirit over matter, to equate spirit with male and matter with female, and to devalue the latter. This is a real issue, and it results from a pagan (Hellenistic/gnostic) legacy, not a Christian one.

The Church‘s insistence on the male-only priesthood is rooted in the truth that matter matters. However, there are more and less respectful ways of expressing this. A reference to chimpanzees, however distant the analogy intended, has absolutely no place in this discussion. You won‘t find anything of the sort in the relevant Church documents, e.g. Inter Insignores:


No, it’s not possible to Ordain a female any more than I can chose to become a grapefruit.

No, nothing any of these women do is valid, if they were Catholic before the "ordination " attempt. They are now also Excommunicated along with those who were involved. So they have even less standing in the Church than the average lay person.


This is an unfounded speculation, but it doesn’t matter anyway, as the Church does not have the authority from God to ordain women in the first place.


How does one respond to people who say that there is no theological reason why women can not be ordained?


Such a person has apparently rejected or not heard of the theological reasons that exist. For example, Malcolm’s answer (3rd sentence only).


I do not understand why anyone would consider those women who want to be priests to be good candidates. They only want power. The priesthood is not a vocation of power- it is a vocation of service. Of course, the priesthood has authority- but it is not authority that they earn- it is authority that is given to them by God. Good priests are humble, reverent, and pious people who are good leaders. They stand up for what is right- against the cultures of the world (when those cultures are wrong). They are true servants of God. None of the women who want to be priests would be good priests, even if it were possible.


A female priest could only be allowed if you believe that the priest does not share in Christ’s nuptial relationship with His Bride, The Church. How can a woman become the Groom? :shrug:

This is why we call a priest “Father”; It is not out of reverence or respect, but we do so because we recognise that he works in Persona Christi (the person of Christ) through a special ministry that Christ created.

And this is why Catholics have so much respect for Mary; She is immaculate - a personification of The Church. This is probably why we call her “Our Mother”. :twocents:


I posted this in another thread and I thought it would be pertinent to this thread, so I’ll repost it:

Women should (or can) be priests - heterodox, not heresy.

Answer from me:

This is definitely heresy. Catholics have been excommunicated for participating in and even so much as observing a “women priest” ordination. Thinking it is okay or should happen is no better.

“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.”

Some say this was infallible, some say it was not. Either way, the teaching IS infallible, and that is all that matters. If this statement was not itself infallible, then the teaching is infallible due to the constant teachings of the Ordinary Magisterium. This is infallible one way or the other. Therefore you cannot be a faithful Catholic and hold this opinion (read the bolded part).

Some Catholic theologians sent a dubium to the Holy See asking if this was infallible:

Dubium: Whether the teaching that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women, which is presented in the Apostolic Letter Ordinatio Sacerdotalis to be held definitively, is to be understood as belonging to the deposit of faith. (ie: de fide, infallible)

Responsum: In the affirmative.

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.

The Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II, at the Audience granted to the undersigned Cardinal Prefect, approved this Reply, adopted in the ordinary session of this Congregation, and ordered it to be published.

Rome, from the offices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, on the Feast of the Apostles SS. Simon and Jude, October 28, 1995.

  • Joseph Card. Ratzinger Prefect
  • Tarcisio Bertone Archbishop Emeritus
    of Vercelli Secretary


Adding to what SemperFidelis has posted:

This topic to me is very personal since just recently someone I have known for years was so-called “ordained a woman priest”. This bothered me a lot and I pray for her constantly for her soul.

I don’t know how the Church explains why women cannot be ordained but through my faith journey this is what I have come up with.

When I was younger, I did not know the answer to the question. The only thing I knew was that I grew up in a culture and type of government that stressed individual rights over and over. Everyone has a right to a job and a career of their choice. This spills over to the Church with women demanding positions so that they can be equal like other men. What I did not know at the time was that the Church was not a government or the US American culture. The Church is about offices that are filled with those called by God who respond with graces given.

So what do we know about God? When Jesus was asked how to pray He said “Our Father”. The word “Father” is very important because He was not refering to sex, but to relationship. To be a father means to protect and care for a family which is what God does through his covenants with us. Granted, their are situations that cause a woman to be a single mother and be forced to care for a family, but this is not the norm. Fathering is important to understanding God’s relationship to us. In scripture, Chist takes the Church as His Bride and loves us in this special way. Covenants are about families and every member has their roles.

In the Old Testament, I believe it was second Samual (I hope) where there is an instant where a priest was passing by and a family hired him to be a “priest and father to us”. This means that the priesthood and fatherhood has been understood from Old Covenant times to be linked together.

John Paul II called the question and issued an encyclical called something like “Ordinatio ??? Donatalis”. Excuse me for murdering the Latin. Here he stated that the male priesthood is understood to be not “from the chair” but from the faith of the Church as it has always been understood.

Women have a priesthood as all believers do, but it is not the ministerial priesthood. This was true for the Jews in the Old covenant as well as it is now.

Hope this helps, mdcpensive1


I don’t think this is right. I think that schismatic groups are still considered to have valid Holy Orders and Sacraments, but are separated in matters of doctrine. The Liberals would be considered “Protestant” because they have rejected the Teachings and Authority of the Church.

No, it would not. It is my understanding that the Church does not believe She has the authority to ordain women. Jesus and the Apostles were surrounded by faithful women, and never ordained any. Since they did not, it is thought that it is not possible.


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