Why can't women be ordained, when they can be baptized

“All the baptized participate in Christ. Since Christ is the fulfillment of the priest, prophet, and king that means that all the baptized are those as well.” Bishop-elect Robert Barron

  1. Women are baptized.
  2. Anyone who is baptized is the fulfillment of the priest, prophet, and king through Christ
  3. Women fulfill the priest, prophet, and king through Christ
  4. Anyone who fulfills the priest through Christ may become a priest and perform the acts Christ performed as priest (such as offering his sacrifice in the eucharist).
  5. Women may become priests and perform the acts Christ performed as priest (such as offering his sacrifice in the eucharist).

Father Barron certainly did not mean to imply what you are imagining. All Christians do have a union with Christ, but His Apostles taught that only men could be ordained.

Was Bishop-elect Barron’s teaching about baptism incorrect then? Only men are baptized into Christ as priest, prophet, and king?

#4 is where it breaks down. The baptismal priest/prophet/king is not the same as ministering the Eucharistic sacrifice. They are distinct indellible marks. The ordained priesthood is not an elevation of the baptismal priesthood. Christ only selected men in this role. He had many woman disciples, yes, but he did not select them as part of the Twelve, his new ministering priesthood with authority to bind and loose, and the Church can’t presume to ordain women to this, or have the authority to take that action.

We can all offer ourselves as living sacrifices, though. We can all evangelize the faith.

Please see the Catechism for more detail:

vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P2A.HTM

So the church has authority to bind and loose in heaven and on earth, but using that authority to ordain women would be presumption? Why?

Fr. Barron is correct, as we see from the catechism:
CCC#1268 The baptized have become “living stones” to be “built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood.” By Baptism they share in the priesthood of Christ, in his prophetic and royal mission. They are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that [they] may declare the wonderful deeds of him who called [them] out of darkness into his marvelous light.” Baptism gives a share in the common priesthood of all believers.
Indeed, #4 is the breakdown. The priest functions especially as the singular bridegroom, especially at consecration, and the nature of a sacrament demands that natural resemblance of the actual bridegroom, the incarnate male Christ. The sacrament of holy orders cannot “occur” without that ingredient.

The baptized participate in Christ’s life in a different way, not particularly that act of the bridegroom who makes sacrifice on the cross, which was the bridegroom’s ultimate moment of consummation (i.e. “It is finished,” Jesus said from the cross)

See also:
*CCC#1592 The ministerial priesthood differs in essence from the common priesthood of the faithful because it confers a sacred power for the service of the faithful. The ordained ministers exercise their service for the People of God by teaching (munus docendi), divine worship (munus liturgicum) and pastoral governance (munus regendi).*Where it mentions “liturgicum” is reference to the mass, that especially significant role of the bridegroom.

The sacraments and the priesthood were instituted by God, not man. The Church can’t make the sky brown and the earth blue. They can intepret the deposit of faith, and establish binding disciplines and canons to govern the Church. But this matter is divine law, and thus infallible doctrine. It’s not just something the Church made true, it’s something that’s always been true.

Pope John Paul II addressed this in a definitive way (relatively) more recently.

w2.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/apost_letters/1994/documents/hf_jp-ii_apl_19940522_ordinatio-sacerdotalis.html

Ed

+1

The universal priesthood of believers and the ordained priesthood of the clergy are two different things. I want to, in fact, rehighlight the statement: **The ordained priesthood is not an elevation of the baptismal priesthood. **

This syllogism is an extreme misinterpretation of what the Bishop elect was saying.

The reason that women are not to be ordained is because they are not men. Sounds politically incorrect, doesn’t it? But the fact is that God created men to be men and women to be women. When God chose to incarnate, he did not just choose to become a human being; he chose to become a man. Just as he chose to incarnate into a specific time, place, people, family, and woman, so he chose to become a specific human being, the man Christ Jesus (1 Tim. 2:5). Thus, those human beings who serve as priests in the person of Christ are men and not women.

This shocking particularity of God is not limited to choosing men to become priests. To demonstrate this to proponents of women’s ordination, you might turn the question around and ask them what it is about men that makes them unfit to bear children. Surely a man is just as physically strong as a woman and psychologically and emotionally capable of the demands of giving birth. Surely he is not inferior to a woman. Isn’t it unfair to men that only women can have babies?

This line of logic descends into absurdity, because women having children is a natural fact of life, something easily seen and understood. To shake one’s fist at the heavens and demand equal rights for men to give birth is to rail against the natural order. At that point you can establish that men being priests is a supernatural fact of life, and to object to it is to object to the supernatural order. The fact that the supernatural order cannot be seen and is not as easily understood as the natural order does not mean that the supernatural order does not exist.

catholic.com/quickquestions/what-is-it-that-keeps-women-from-being-priests

True.

  1. Anyone who is baptized is the fulfillment of the priest, prophet, and king through Christ

True. (Universal priesthood vs. Ministerial Priesthood. Not every Jo-bloe can absolve grave sin or consecrate the Eucharistic Host, etc…)

  1. Women fulfill the priest, prophet, and king through Christ

Yep, just like everyone one of does. You aren’t about to suggest that this isn’t good enough, and that we all deserve to be Priests, as though it’s some “right” as opposed to a true calling form God, are you?

  1. Anyone who fulfills the priest through Christ may become a priest and perform the acts Christ performed as priest (such as offering his sacrifice in the eucharist).

False. Only those called by God to be Priests are called to be Priests. There are also MANY other callings that God gives other people. Marriage, Single life, Lay Ministry, Cloistered Life, the various Fraterninties/Convents/Monastaries…(probably an endless list).

  1. Women may become priests and perform the acts Christ performed as priest (such as offering his sacrifice in the eucharist).

False. Only those called by God to be Priests are called to be Priests. [See other excellent explanations above, such as the Church not having the authority to change the color of the sky, etc…]

Indeed, #4 is the breakdown. The priest functions especially as the singular bridegroom, especially at consecration, and the nature of a sacrament demands that natural resemblance of the actual bridegroom, the incarnate male Christ. The sacrament of holy orders cannot “occur” without that ingredient.

And yet the bride has no particular requirement of only being female, since both men and women compose the bride. Why require gender resemblance on one side, but not the other?

The baptized participate in Christ’s life in a different way, not particularly that act of the bridegroom who makes sacrifice on the cross, which was the bridegroom’s ultimate moment of consummation (i.e. “It is finished,” Jesus said from the cross)

But it seems that neither way should be determined by gender, since “there is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Gal 3:28)

Even if there are different levels of priesthood, they are both in Christ, and therefore gender distinctions would not be considered in light of the scripture I just quoted.

By this logic, you should be disgruntled against Christ for coming in the form of a man instead of a woman, or both. You would complain that Christ came as a man and chose men for His Ministerial Priesthood (by this logic). Is that your intent?

Is it not “interpretation” when the church chooses to see Jesus’s selection of twelve male apostles as establishing a prohibition on female apostles, rather than as silence, neither approval or disapproval, on the matter of female apostles?

But they are the same sufficient to describe both as priesthood. Which means that women can have priesthood, just not all of it. But men are not disabled by their gender, even if not every specific man is ordained.

Was “Jesus’ selection of the twelve” the only criteria used by the Church in recognizing this truth? No. Read the short link in Post #8 that edwest2 provided. It’s goes into great detail in a very succinct way.

Disabled by their gender? Are you saying that women cannot have a fulfilling life without the ability to become a Priest?

This is a logical fallacy of composition. The fact that the Church is the Bride of Christ does NOT mean that each individual member of the Church is ALSO the Bride of Christ.

In other words, no man is the “Bride of Christ.” The role of the Church as the bride of Christ does not extend to us as individuals but rather only to the Church as a whole. This metaphorical relationship ALSO extends, however, to the role that nuns (women) play in holy orders, but never to men as individuals.

But it seems that neither way should be determined by gender, since “there is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Gal 3:28)

Even if there are different levels of priesthood, they are both in Christ, and therefore gender distinctions would not be considered in light of the scripture I just quoted.

Sword drills are not the way to understand scripture. We cannot understand a verse of scripture without understanding it in the context in which a particular verse is presented. Galatians 3:28 is part of a discussion of whether or not gentiles could be saved, or if they were subject to conversion to Judaism and Jewish law in order to be saved. The answer is that no, all people can be saved and are NOT subject to the laws of the old covenant to do so.

You have taken a verse which says that all can be saved by the Grace of Christ, and by separating it from its context, you have reinterpreted it to mean that the ethos of creation no longer functions as a natural order. I’m sorry, but I must reject this reinterpretation of Galatians 3 as false…

Um… no. Again, the universal priesthood of believers is not a smaller element of the ordained priesthood. They are, simply put, not even the same thing. Sort of like the sainthood of all believers is NOT the same as the Sainthood of those in heaven. (nor does being an earthen saint entitle one to automatic status as a Saint in heaven).

But men are not disabled by their gender, even if not every specific man is ordained.

Careful here, because you are disparaging women. Men cannot have children. Men cannot become nuns. Men cannot become mothers, or sisters. There are many roles which are appropriate to the ethos of women when men cannot fulfill. Men are not “disabled” (handicapped?) by the fact that we cannot become those things.

Similarly, women cannot be fathers and brothers, they cannot become priests. There are many roles which are appropriate to the ethos of men which women cannot fulfill. Women are NOT disabled or handicapped by the fact that they cannot become those things. They are women. Being a woman is an incredible and awesome thing.

But you would have me believe that unless a woman can make herself like a man, that she’s disabled and insufficient. I don’t believe that. I think women are phenomenal WITHOUT having to try to become men.

This author knows that gender is a natural fact. He points out that its a function of the incarnation just like family, place etc. He even outright states that women can give birth but men can’t is a natural fact of life.

And then proceeds to assume that gender becomes a supernatural fact regarding the priesthood, even though there is no male or female in Christ Jesus.

Incoherent.

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