Woman and gender


#1

Hi everyone,

I am appealing to all of you for your learned comments. I am in first year theology and one of the assignments on ethics that I need to hand in is titled; “Woman and gender”. What is the churches stance and what has the church contributed towards gender equality?

Thanks…


#2

We now have female altar servers in our diocese, unheard of a few years ago.

My wife is a lecter; I don’t think women used to get to be lecters either, but others will please chime in if I’m mistaken on that.

Alan


#3

As a Theology student, you should be readily able to understand Mulieris Dignitatem (and appreciate how powerful it is!).

Additionally, you might note the last 3 Doctors of the Church have all been women (in 1970 Paul VI added St. Teresa of Avila and St. Catherine of Siena. John Paul II added St. Thérèse of Lisieux in 1997).

Finally, you may also want to read this Apostolic Letter concerning Radical Feminism and the Collaboration of Men and Women in the Catholic Church. It should be great source material.

God bless you in your studies, and may St. Matthew pray for your wisdom,
RyanL


#4

read the new testament. the ideas of women’s roles and the relationship between husband and wife were revolutionary for the times. husbands and wives are told to submit to one another (unheard of before) and husbands were to be willing to die for their brides (again, unheard of…see the story of jacob where he puts not only his wife but his children in front of him so that esau would kill them first). every culture that Christianity has entered, the status of women has risen. i love that that can take place and we can still keep sacred the God-ordained roles for the sexes at the same time.


#5

Probably more significant than the superficial ones I wrote about already, is the Church has promulgated teachings about the proper relationship between males and females, and thus promoted women by teaching the truth about them.

In terms of “equality” I’d say they are equal in that their roles are important.

I hesitate to believe they are “equal” in the sense that other than a few physical body parts they are interchangeable.

For example, I highly doubt men and women can be “equal” in leadership positions, in that their very sex has an affect on their identity, and how they view their relationships with every single other person on the planet.

My spiritual director told me that a complete person has six main components, and if any one suffers in can interfere with the others:
physical
mental
spiritual
social
emotional
sexual

Out of those six, he noted that the sexual component is the one that is most intimately connected to a person’s sense of identity. (Gosh, I suppose one of the first remarks I made about my own children is whether they had an inny or outy, so to speak.)

How many of those above do we really think are equal in men and women? Obviously the physical and sexual is different?

That is not to say they can’t be equally or more effective based on sex to be able to perform a certain task to a certain set of criteria. In other words, all other qualifications equal (and let’s even allow policital strategy to be taken into account) should we hire a man or woman to lead the company to record profits next quarter? Who knows? I’m saying there is some difference in the way they will handle things; whether that is a good or bad thing I care not opinion except in specific situations.

I’m taking a variation from “equal but different” and instead I assert “unequal, different, but both important and useful”

My view is that men and women are complimentary in more ways than they combine to procreate. Whether do to nature or nurture or some combination, by the time they get to the age of reason they do, in fact, think about things differently, have different emotions, and some of these are directly related to biology such as the hormones that are present in the blood.

Now, as far as being married, I’ll put it this way. When I buy a pair of shoes, I want neither two left feet nor two right feet. I plan to make one “body” which is called a marriage and which in my own case has born six delightful children who love me and their wonderful mother. If I had deformed feet, I suppose I’d have to see how to get the shoes made special but we are blessed to be a complete pair.

Our intuition, or thinking, and everything else is different, and since we love to compare notes on our differences as much as our samenesses (and that goes for physical too :o ) we end up having the synergistic effect of being greater together than the sum of us each separately.

That’s what gender is about. You do some things better than me, and I do some things better than you. Let’s combine forces and do many things well!

I think with the help of our SD, many good friends, four years of intense searching full time for truth, and a lot of great advice from this forum and other good friends, ya da ya da ya da, our marriage is so perfect that I can’t imagine it any other way.

Not that I can blame homosexuals for not being attracted to the opposite sex. The physical attractiveness is nice, but those other differences often manifest themselves in ugly conflicting scenarios. Thus, diversity if not handled right creates strife rather than synergy. Maybe one male plus one male equals two males, but I don’t think they can have that synergy to bring God into their relationship, by which one male plus one female equals on complete set of happiness factor.

There. Don’t know if it’s “learned” but I have thought about these things a lot, and come to the point where my imagination of the greatest marriage possible is still catching up the reality of the great marriage I already have. Every day I discover new and wonderful things about my wife and the way she thinks and acts, that prove we weren’t cut from the same mold. I don’t think it all has to do with body parts.

Alan


#6

[quote=Alan] I’m taking a variation from “equal but different” and instead I assert “unequal, different, but both important and useful”
[/quote]

I’m afraid that I would have to disagree with my esteemed collegue Alan, and say that while I believe men and women are completely different, they are exactly equal in Dignity, being created in the image and likeness of God. This has been affirmed by the Church, but I’m not sure where. Perhaps in Humanae Vitae?

God bless,
RyanL


#7

[quote=RyanL]I’m afraid that I would have to disagree with my esteemed collegue Alan, and say that while I believe men and women are completely different, they are exactly equal in Dignity, being created in the image and likeness of God. This has been affirmed by the Church, but I’m not sure where. Perhaps in Humanae Vitae?

God bless,
RyanL
[/quote]

Dear RyanL,

Thank you for the kind words, and I am honored to hear such a positive message from you, my esteemed colleague.

I’m afraid I’m not just going to roll over for this one, as I will not allow you your disagreement to stick. I intend to retaliate by agreeing completely with you.

So there. :smiley:

When I use certain terminology, I have certain things in mind. When those who have more apologetics knowlege than I note that I’ve used terms that cause others to infer things, then I am happy to modify my words to more closely match my message. If it is unclear, I thrive on feedback such as this excellent feedback from RyanL that allows me to make my point more clearly, so that others may join in and show their own wonderful colors. In short, RyanL, thank you for the feedback. :slight_smile:

I’m with you all the way on dignity, in terms of its being equal. :thumbsup: Thanks for pointing that out because it might not have been clear from my post, although if you saw any statements contrary to this in my post I’d appreciate you letting me know here or pm.

I think the Church agrees with me that men and women are complimentary, and that they are not the same. When I say “equal” I’m thinking more in terms of “exactly alike” than in “equally valuable” or “having equal dignity.”

There. I double dog dare you to find a disagreement between us now. :bounce:

And BTW, if it sounds like I’m trying to be sarcastic, then I’ll prove it isn’t by pointing out that I won’t use the sarcastic rolleyes smiley thing here. :thumbsup:

Alan


#8

Wow, thank you very much everyone! :smiley:

You have all given me lots to digest tonight.

God bless. :blessyou:


#9

I wouldn’t presume, and I humbly bow to your massive thread-count :bowdown:.

Oh, and thanks for correcting my spelling of “colleague”!

God bless,
RyanL


#10

Thanks RyanL,:slight_smile:

The sites that you gave me will be fantastic for referencing. Will let you know if I ace this one.

Thanks for your prayers. God bless.


#11

[quote=RyanL]I wouldn’t presume, and I humbly bow to your massive thread-count :bowdown:.

Oh, and thanks for correcting my spelling of “colleague”!

God bless,
RyanL
[/quote]

Dude, you have me outclassed. Especially with such a “modest” thread count, your strategy put mine to shame.

First of all, you were the first to bow to me. Therefore you have lowered yourself knowing that you will eventually be exalted. Now if I bow to you, it will mean less because Others Might Think that I’m just being a copycat, and in fact I’ll wonder that myself.

Second of all, you caught the speck your own eye before I did, and gave me credit for taking it out when I was so blind I totally missed it.

I can’t seem to get one up on you. I admire your tactics, and so since I can’t bow to you (even though as far as you know I would be sincere) I will do the best thing I can. Change the subject.

Nice seeing you here, friend. :tiphat:

Alan


#12

Alan and Ryan…

You are both amazing… and put many of us to shame… AND ARE BOTH EXCEEDINGLY SILLY! (yet are completely intelligent and knowledgable… wow!)

–Laura :slight_smile:


#13

The church’s endorsement of the role of the Virgin Mary and female saints has elevated that status of women, and brought dignity and respect for them.

cheddar


#14

[quote=Fashina86]Alan and Ryan…

You are both amazing… and put many of us to shame… AND ARE BOTH EXCEEDINGLY SILLY! (yet are completely intelligent and knowledgable… wow!)

–Laura :slight_smile:
[/quote]

If you want to see some serious silliness, watch the House of Representatives on CSPAN sometimes.

Don’t even listen to what they say. Listen for words like “the gentleman” or “the gentlelady” which is fairly neutral unless used with “my friend” or “my good friend” which means I’m not against them on this issue.

When they want to insult an opponent, they use the word “distinguished” as in “the distinguished gentlelady from New York” may be code word for “the awful Hillary.” To make it worse, they add the modifier “highly” as in “the highly distinguished gentlelady from New York” meaning, “the incredibly dispicable Hillary.”

It’s hilarious, though a bit slow moving.

Alan


#15

[quote=AlanFromWichita]If you want to see some serious silliness, watch the House of Representatives on CSPAN sometimes.

Don’t even listen to what they say. Listen for words like “the gentleman” or “the gentlelady” which is fairly neutral unless used with “my friend” or “my good friend” which means I’m not against them on this issue.

When they want to insult an opponent, they use the word “distinguished” as in “the distinguished gentlelady from New York” may be code word for “the awful Hillary.” To make it worse, they add the modifier “highly” as in “the highly distinguished gentlelady from New York” meaning, “the incredibly dispicable Hillary.”

It’s hilarious, though a bit slow moving.

Alan
[/quote]

That is great… I will pay attention!


#16

[quote=RobertinRSA]Hi everyone,

I am appealing to all of you for your learned comments. I am in first year theology and one of the assignments on ethics that I need to hand in is titled; “Woman and gender”. What is the churches stance and what has the church contributed towards gender equality?

Thanks…
[/quote]

the title seems ambiguous to me, which leads me to assume there is a hidden (or not so hidden) agenda in the topics assigned

even if you are on the path to celibate priesthood you should be aware that the genders are not equal, there are substantial observable differences, and if you have not been taught the facts of life on this topic now would be a good time for a refresher course.


#17

Three scripture quotes:

  1. For our lives here on Earth, God created two different but complimentary genders. Neither one was ever intended to supplant the other, but both were always expected to work together with their unique gifts:

Gen 1:27-28 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply…”**

  1. We each have our God-defined gender roles, and can not dispense with nor take over the role of the other gender without lessening the result. The “Body” being described below is the “Body of Christ” - the church.

1 Cor 12:12-13, 17-24 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body–Jews or Greeks, slaves or free–and all were made to drink of one Spirit… If the whole body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? But as it is, God arranged the organs in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single organ, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” On the contrary, the parts of the body which seem to be weaker are indispensable, and those parts of the body which we think less honorable we invest with the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, which our more presentable parts do not require.**

  1. Spiritually we are all the same, which is to say in our relationship to God and in our forthcoming lives in heaven. No one of us is better or worse than another because of physical or cultural disctinctions.

Gal 3:26-28 For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.


#18

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