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2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions!

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Sophie
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/21 17:56:49 (permalink)









On this day May 21 in 1851:  Slavery is abolished in Colombia.
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/21 22:51:40 (permalink)
The Unique Awareness, Insight and Wisdom of Women
by Mimi Haddad
Sojourners
May 18, 2009

As friends and I met for dinner to enjoy pictures of mutual friends’ wedding, their four-year old joined in the fun. At one point I asked this child which picture was her favorite, and she quickly pointed to one saying, “This one!” When I asked why, she pointed again and uttered the name of her best friend. Her parents and I strained our eyes to have another look. We’d been focusing on the images of adults and failed to observe a little girl—her best friend—poking her head just slightly around her mother’s knee. We all broke into laugher realizing we had missed something very precious to this child. It took another little girl to observe what had been invisible to us adults. It was one of those profound moments when you suddenly realize how experience shapes observation.

This was what happened in the 1800s, as slaves began to read and interpret Scriptures. When slaves learned to read the Bible, they saw themselves in the Exodus story. Their experiences of slavery greatly informed an understanding of Scripture that is beneficial for all of us!

The same is true of women. As women entered universities in the 1800s, they began making significant theological contributions, interpreting astutely those texts that concern gender. Consider the seminal work of Katharine Bushnell (1856-1946), a medical doctor who learned Greek and Hebrew in order to understand God’s message on gender. Her groundbreaking scholarship, God’s Word to Women, informed by her medical work among abused women, continues to enlighten the work of egalitarians today!

Because women bring specific and different insights to Scripture, it is important to include their voices in the decisions we make as the church. A recent example makes this point clear. Invited to participate in a week’s discussion on evangelism, 24 male and 3 female delegates gathered to explore key issues impacting the church, including gender. It was a woman in the group who noticed that the version of Scripture selected often rendered women invisible, interpreting words like anthropos—Greek for “people”—as “men.” When it came time to review proposed speakers for a future conference, it was a woman who noticed a total absence of female speakers. It was a woman who resisted the request that a woman serve as their secretary. When the group selected articles to publish, a paper on gender—written by a woman—was declined. Who will notice? Women and those who support them. This experience highlights the challenges women encounter when working for change within the churches and organizations they serve.

If our experiences as women bring awareness, insight, and wisdom to our understanding of God’s Word, and if only men are permitted to teach and interpret Scripture, we deprive the church of the insights of more than half its members! Is this a wise practice, and does it engage the contributions God intended women to make?

Consider how differently Christ behaved! Is it not interesting that our Lord (who lived in a very patriarchal society) used females as key figures in many of his parables and other teachings? Clearly, Jesus loved and valued women, and he made this clear by including their voices and experiences throughout his work. If we are followers of Jesus should we not be doing the same? And should we not be demonstrating it in our churches and Christian organizations?


Mimi Haddad is president of Christians for Biblical Equality. Join her this July 24-26 and consider these themes more closely at CBE’s 2009 conference, titled “Are Men from Mars and Women from Venus? A Biblical Response to Gender Difference."

http://blog.sojo.net/2009/05/18/the-unique-awareness-insight-and-wisdom-of-women/
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/21 23:05:54 (permalink)
Women ordained until 12th century: US theologian
cathnews.com
May 22, 2009



Gary Macy, a professor of theology at California's Jesuit-run Santa Clara University says that there is little room for historical doubt that women were ordained in the Catholic Church until about the end of the 12th century.

According to Macy, the practice ended because of "virulent misogyny", California Catholic reports.
 
 
Gary Macy

Macy told attendees at a Monday night lecture at the Vanderbilt University Divinity School in Nashville, Tennessee, there is little room for historical doubt that women were ordained in the Catholic Church until about the end of the 12th century.

Macy's lecture, entitled "A Higher Calling for Women? Historical Perspectives in the Catholic Church," was given at Benton Chapel on the Vanderbilt campus. The university's news service described the lecture this way: "The very idea of the ordination of women in the Roman Catholic Church is dismissed by many as contrary to basic church doctrine.
 
Gary Macy, the John Nobili SJ Professor of Theology at Santa Clara University, says historical evidence is overwhelming that for much of the church's history, the ordination of women was a fact."

Macy has held his post at Santa Clara University since September 2007. Before that, he taught at the University of San Diego for 29 years. "During his years in San Diego, Dr. Macy published several books and over twenty articles on the theology and history of the Eucharist and on women's ordination," says the Santa Clara University web site. Among his books is The Hidden History of Women's Ordination, published in 2007.

According to Macy, until about the mid-12th century, women were ordained as deaconesses, served as bishops, distributed Communion and even heard confessions. "Women were considered to be as ordained as any man... they were considered clergy," he said.

By the middle of the 12th century, said Macy, a profound change occurred in the Church's understanding of the concept of ordination, largely as a consequence of political considerations as the Church sought to protect its property from feudal lords by inventing "a separate clerical class."

Theologians came to view women as "metaphysically different from other people," so that, by the mere fact of being female, women were considered incapable of being ordained. Canonists adopted the position, "Women were never ordained, are not ordained now, and can never be ordained," said Macy.

From the standpoint of history, said Macy, women's ordination is a matter of historical fact, though he conceded the theological issue is a separate question. Nonetheless, he said, "By the end of the 12th century, the debate was over."

SOURCE
LINKS
http://www.cathnews.com/article.aspx?aeid=13925
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/22 15:24:26 (permalink)
Evangelicals urge Church of Scotland to back the ministry of gay people
By staff writers
ekklesia.org
May 22, 2009

A strong statement from a range of evangelical organizations, also backed by broader-based groups with significant evangelical participation, has called on the Church of Scotland to affirm the membership and ministry of gay people in the church on biblical and traditional grounds.

The move from 11 different networks comes in the wake of attempts by hardliners, who see themselves as ‘traditionalists’, to challenge highly-regarded minister Scott Rennie (who is openly gay) in Aberdeen and to promote a resolution barring gay people from the church.

The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, the leading Presbyterian denomination’s governing body, is meeting now through to 27 May 2009.

The statement by evangelicals affirming gay people has been sent to the Kirk and to the media.

It points out that there are many who stand by traditional evangelical and orthodox Christian commitments who reject anti-gay words and actions.

The media traditionally portray the disagreement about homosexuality and faithful same-sex partnerships in the churches as a split between ‘evangelicals’ and ‘liberals’ – but the growing number of pro-gay evangelicals are now challenging these claims and pointing out that the ‘traditional teaching’ that many claim to stand by may not be in accord with the Gospel tradition after all.

The statement says: “There are thousands of faithful people sitting in pews, standing in pulpits, working in your Kirk Sessions, who are gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered. We urge the Assembly to embrace the message of transformational grace and inclusion, to stand for justice and mercy and signal the openness of God's compassionate love to his children – straight and gay. You will be in common with a vast and growing number of evangelicals and others across the world who do not exclude homosexuals but understand that the Church has erred in its rejection of them.”

Last night an OpenKirk Assembly fringe meeting, attended by around 70 people, challenged the Church to listen to the experience, witness and vision of gay people, by showing the powerful film 'Through My Eyes'.

The General Assembly has two issues to examine regarding homosexuality. First, there is an attempt to forbid the move of gay minister Scott Rennie to Aberdeen – where he has already been warmly welcomed by his congregation and backed by the Presbytery, though with some dissent.

Second, an ‘Overture’ from a Presbytery has been promulagated which would forbid the ordination of any practicing homosexual. In effect,it calls for excommunication, say critics.

Anti-gay hardliners wanted the Overture to be heard before the Rennie case - which his supporters say would prejudice the case and make the Overture retroactive. However, yesterday morning the Assembly voted to hear the case first, then the Overture.

If the Overture passes, it would not become law for the Church, as a majority of the 48 Presbyteries would need to pass it as well.

“We are praying hard that the Assembly will listen to the Spirit, the generosity of the Gospel and the testimony of holy lives in recognizing the ministry of gay people and rejecting prejudice in the guise of ‘tradition’,” a supporter of Scott Rennie told Ekklesia – which is backing the evangelical statement and which was also involved with Accepting Evangelicals and others in en earlier call (http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/8749) to the churches and the Evangelical Alliance, arising from responses to the activities of the Westboro Baptist Church hate-sect in the USA.

The organizations involved in creating and supporting the evangelical statement are: Accepting Evangelicals, Baptist Network Affirming Lesbian & Gay Christians, Changing Attitude England, Changing Attitude Nigeria, Christian Lesbians UK, CourageSCOTLAND, Courage UK, Ekklesia, Evangelicals Concerned, Inclusive Church, and the Scottish Region of Evangelical Fellowship for Lesbian and Gay Christians.

The affirming evangelical statement in full

As you meet this week, you are faced with a difficult subject – that of homosexuality in the Church. We want to assure you of our prayers. We are evangelicals who believe that Scripture does not condemn homosexual relationships. We are made up of heterosexual and homosexual Christians. These are of course deeply personal questions. As a result of the traditional view on homosexuality, it has been our experience that many gay and lesbian Christians have been forced down a path of self hatred, which all too often leads to loss of faith, breakdown or even suicide. After much wrestling, prayer and heartache both individually and corporately we have come to understand that God affirms loving faithful same sex relationships.

As evangelicals, we believe in the Authority and Supremacy of Scripture, and wholeheartedly affirm “The holy scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the word of God, the only rule of faith and obedience” (Westminster Larger Catechism 3) without question. We understand the various positions within the Church and believe it is a difference of interpretation, not biblical Authority that characterises our debate. We support and affirm our brothers and sisters who have had the same struggle with sexuality as we have and yet who feel called to singleness, as we feel called to affirm relationships.

We stand with the historic orthodox Christian teaching of 'justification through faith alone' – that a person is made right with God because of the Work of Jesus Christ and it is faith in Him that brings us into relationship with God – without any additional requirements, no matter who makes them. This is the heart of the Good News that Scotland – and the rest of the world, whether gay or straight – needs to hear from the Church. No one is excluded from relationship with God (or service for him) because they are in relationship with someone of the same gender.

We affirm the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ and the Apostle Paul that all the Law is summed up in love for God and love for our neighbour (Mark 12; Romans 13). We can see nothing in Scripture or our calling as God's People – both gay and straight - where a loving monogamous same sex relationship is inconsistent with this summary of the requirements to live a holy life. We pray that the General Assembly will follow the example of her Head, King Jesus, who reached out to the marginalised, the suffering, the oppressed and those on the fringes and who continues to do so today.

Finally, and honestly, we are not just 'out there'. There are thousands of faithful people sitting in pews, standing in pulpits, working in your Kirk Sessions who are gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered. We urge the Assembly to embrace the message of transformational grace and inclusion, to stand for justice and mercy and signal the openness of God's compassionate love to his children – straight and gay. You will be in common with a vast and growing number of evangelicals and others across the world who do not exclude homosexuals but understand that the Church has erred in its rejection of them. The question you are facing is, will you send a clear message of God's love and welcome, or one of rejection and fear. We urge the General Assembly to take this opportunity to act biblically, in the spirit of the inclusivity, holiness and love of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be pastorally sensitive to the LGBT community within the Church of Scotland.

Signed by:

http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/9494
Sophie
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/22 15:51:40 (permalink)



Dear friends,

Through scholarly research, we now know there are deep an long standing social and psychological foundations that gird resistance to women's ordination.  It is an ancient resistance that emanates from an intricate web drawing in concepts of God, demonisation of Eve, women, homosexuals, attitudes to body and sexuality, specific roles for men and women, resistance to contraception, obligatory celibacy, etc.  

As an fyi, our library that includes a corner that focuses specifically on the roots of this resistance.  For more, see here: www.womenpriests.org/body/index.asp
 
For more about homosexuality specifically, see here: http://www.thebodyissacred.org/body/sex_homo.asp

If you have any questions, please let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/23 19:24:01 (permalink)

 
On this day May 23 in 1430Hundred Years' War: Joan of Arc was captured at the Siege of Compiègne.
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/23 19:34:44 (permalink)
Born January 6 in 1412 - Joan of Arc, patroness of conscience and those who challenge the Church.
 
Joan of Arc, a national heroine of France, is patroness of conscience and those who challenge Church authorities,  She was excommunicated and burned at the stake in 1431 as a result of a wrongful ecclesiastical conviction for heresy and witchcraft.  Years later, clerics acknowledged she was wrongfully accused. 
 
She was exhonerated by the Church authorities 24 years after her death. 

 
Joan of Arc 
 
Joan of Arc was tried for heresy and witchcraft and burned at the stake after leading the French to several victories over the English during the Hundred Years War, notably in Orleans, south of Paris.

I will maintain what I have always said at my trial. And if I were to be condemned and saw the fire lit and the wood prepared and the executioner who was to burn me ready to cast me into the fire, still in the fire would I not say anything other than I have said. And I will maintain what I have said until death.

- Joan of Arc testifying at her heresy trial on May 24, 1431, one week before her conviction and execution.
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/23 19:35:46 (permalink)
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/26 11:03:21 (permalink)
The Bishops We Need
A Closer Look at Church, Culture and Change

by Anthony Stevens Arroyo
The Washington Post
May 2009

It's one thing to oppose political policies like abortion and stem cell research: it's quite another to clothe that opposition with hateful attacks on individuals. But that's what seems to be going on in the right-wing corner of the U.S. Church. I think the stridency reflects the ongoing struggle to "rebrand" Catholicism and Father Tom Reese has recently fleshed out some of the issues on his website. Theology aside, lay persons in Catholic America should consider this a testing of leadership styles.

Leadership is often a matter of perception. After all, a military general -- even a brilliant one-- can't win the battle unless troops follow him into battle. Catholic America is familiar with how secular politics personalizes leadership and how electioneering appeals are salted with words like "stay the course" or "change for a new direction." It should not surprise anyone, therefore, that social perceptions about leadership seep into the way pastors and bishops govern and how their governance is understood.

. . .

For more about this perspective from an American writer, click here: http://www.womenpriests.org/circles/fb.asp?m=33697
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/26 11:07:10 (permalink)
Benedict XVI Calls Priests to Be Saints
Urges Spiritual Strength in Dialogue with Modern World

zenit.org
May 25, 2009

VATICAN CITY, MAY 25, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Vatican diplomats should have spiritual strength in order to dialogue with the modern world while safeguarding their Christian and priestly identity, Benedict XVI told members of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy.

The Pope stated this Saturday in an audience with students of the academy, led by its president, Archbishop Beniamino Stella, a Vatican communiqué reported. The academy is responsible for training candidates for the Holy See diplomatic service.

The Pontiff affirmed that the students' upcoming service in various apostolic nunciatures may "be considered as a specific priestly vocation, a pastoral ministry that involves a particular approach to the world and to its often highly complex social and political problems."

He continued, "The dialogue with the modern world that is asked of you, as well as your contact with people and the institutions they represent, require an inner strength and a spiritual firmness capable of safeguarding -- indeed of giving ever more prominence to -- your Christian and priestly identity."

. . .

To read complete article, click here: http://www.womenpriests.org/circles/fb.asp?m=33694
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/26 13:17:57 (permalink)









On this day May 26 in 451 – The Battle of Avarayr between Armenian rebels and the Sassanid Empire takes place. The Armenians are defeated militarily but are guaranteed freedom to openly practice Christianity.
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/26 13:18:53 (permalink)









On this day May 26 in 1647 – Alse Young becomes the first person executed as a witch in the American colonies, when she is hanged in Hartford, Connecticut.
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/29 12:35:36 (permalink)
Catholic theologian Miguel Diaz nominated for Vatican ambassador
By Patricia Zapor
Catholic News Service
May 28, 2009

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- President Barack Obama has nominated prominent Catholic theologian Miguel Diaz to become ambassador to the Vatican.

In a statement issued late May 27, the White House announced Diaz's nomination, along with nominees for ambassadors to the United Kingdom, France, Japan, India and several other countries.

 

Miguel Diaz, a prominent Catholic theologian and professor of theology at the College of St. Benedict and St. John's University, both in Collegeville, Minn., has been nominated by U.S. President Barack Obama to become ambassador to the Vatican. (CNS/courtesy of St. Benedict and St. John's University)

Diaz, 45, is a professor of theology at the College of St. Benedict and St. John's University, both in Collegeville, Minn. He is a board member of the Catholic Theological Society of America and former president of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States. His wife, Marian, is an adjunct instructor at St. Benedict and St. John's.

Diaz served as a member of Obama's Catholic advisory team during the campaign and was a regular campaign spokesman on Obama's behalf, particularly in the Spanish-language press.

"I am very honored, grateful, and humbled that President Obama has nominated me to serve as ambassador to the Holy See," said Diaz in a statement forwarded to
Catholic News Service by the university. "If confirmed by the U.S. Senate I will continue the work of my predecessors and build upon 25 years of formal diplomatic relations with the Holy See. I wish to be a bridge between our nation and the Holy See."

A native of Havana, Diaz was praised as "a leading Hispanic theologian in the United States," by Benedictine Abbot John Klassen, chancellor of St. John's University.

In a comment e-mailed to CNS, Abbot Klassen said Diaz "is a skilled Trinitarian theologian who is passionate both as a teacher and a scholar. He is a strong proponent of the necessity of the church to become deeply and broadly multicultural, to recognize and appreciate the role that culture plays in a living faith."

Diaz would be the first Hispanic to represent the United States at the Vatican. Like several of Obama's other prominent nominees -- including Judge Sonia Sotomayor, nominated to the Supreme Court -- Diaz comes from humble beginnings. His father worked as a waiter and his mother did data entry work, and their son was the first member of the family to attend college.

Archbishop Pietro Sambi, apostolic nuncio to the United States, called Diaz "an excellent choice because he knows very well the United States and because of his background in the Catholic Church."

Latin Americans "should be very proud," he told CNS during a symposium May 28 at The Catholic University of America that the archbishop was attending. Coincidentally, the topic of the daylong event was the history of U.S.-Vatican diplomatic relations.

In an interview with CNS during inaugural festivities in January, Diaz said he thought "the presidency of Barack Obama represents a new opportunity for all of us" for racial healing.

Diaz said Obama was "committed to working" with people who defend "life in the womb" and deeply respects people who hold positions he does not agree with.

The announcement of the nomination capped months of speculation about who Obama would select to represent him at the Vatican. In early April the Vatican press spokesman took the unusual step of shooting down persistent rumors that the Vatican had rejected several potential nominees, including Caroline Kennedy, supposedly because they support legal abortion.

"Wherever we can, we should advance life at all stages," Diaz said in January.

One White House source described Diaz as "clearly pro-life" and said the decision to select a respected theologian instead of a big fundraiser or political mover and shaker is an indication "of how seriously the administration is taking the relationship with the Vatican."

Diaz would fill the vacancy created by the departure of Harvard law professor Mary Ann Glendon, who was named ambassador in 2007 and left the post in January.

His Senate confirmation hearing has not yet been scheduled. It was not known if it would come before Obama's trip in early July to Rome, during which the president is expected to meet with Pope Benedict XVI.

The statement from St John's University noted that Diaz earned his bachelor's degree from St. Thomas University in Miami Gardens, Fla., and his master's and doctorate from the University of Notre Dame in Indiana. He previously taught at Barry University in Miami Shores, Fla.; St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary in Boynton Beach, Fla.; the University of Dayton in Ohio; and Notre Dame. The statement said he is fluent in Italian, Spanish and French.

The St. John's statement said Diaz's academic interests -- besides his focus on the Trinity -- also include theological anthropology and Latino/Latina theologies.

His published materials include the book "On Being Human: U.S. Hispanic and Rahnerian Perspectives" (Orbis Books, 2002), for which he received the Hispanic Theological Initiative's 2002 Book of the Year award from Princeton Theological Seminary. He also is co-editor of the book, "From the Heart of Our People: Latino/a Explorations in Catholic Systematic Theology" (Orbis Books, 1999).

- - -

Contributing to this story was John Thavis in Anaheim, Calif.


http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0902431.htm
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 16:05:22 (permalink)
Dear friends, 

During this past week, BBC television viewers have been enjoying this year's rendition of Springwatch (http://www.bbc.co.uk/springwatch/).  The annual three week series follows 'live' via webcam the veritable explosions of new life happening in the spring of the UK wilds.  A recent segment about the cuckoo bird and concerns that it may be disappearing from the UK caught my attention.

As some of you know, our website founder, now Academic Advisor Dr. Wijngaards commemorated the bird in the title of one of his books, The Ordination of Women in the Catholic Church: Unmasking a Cuckoo’s Egg Tradition.

 
Reviews of The Ordination of Women in the Catholic Church:Unmasking a Cuckoo's Egg Tradition by Dr. John Wijngaards

Besides a familiar call 'cu-coo', the bird is notorious for its parasitic habit of laying eggs in the nests of other birds. Once hatched, the cuckoo chick throws out eggs belonging to the nesting bird.  The chick is then fed all the food brought back by the unsuspecting surrogate parents.


Striking footage shows how cuckoo chicks mimic cries to encourage their foster parents to bring them more food
Photo: Mike Birkhead Associates 

By referring to the cuckoo in the title of the book,  Dr. Wijngaards draws a comparison to the habits of the bird when he explains the historical development that led to the exclusion of women from ordained ministry in the Catholic Church.  We now know that exclusion of women does not find is source in Sacred Scripture or in authentic Tradition.  As though it were an egg dropped into the Christian nest by a foreign bird, the practice of not ordaining women came in from outside the Church.  The prejudice finds its parent source not in Christian roots but instead in the pagan Roman law of early Christian times. Contrary to that which was modelled by Christ, the principles of Roman law excluded women from holding any public responsibility. In essence, Roman law was the parent bird that laid the egg which then hatched into the 'unChristian' practice of excluding women from sacred ministry!

 
The Cuckoo bird summers in the UK and western Europe 

Dr. Wijngaards' book is a must read for anyone wanting to understand the case for women priests.  Not only does Dr. W examine the historical evidence and traditional arguments that underlie the Vatican’s insistence that women cannot be priests, he also clearly shows how natural developments in the early Church-- such as the sacramental ordination of women deacons--would have led to priestly ordination of women had they not been interrupted by the implantation of Roman law into the Christian nest.

Centuries later we continue to witness the astonishing results: 
  • a pagan idea based on social prejudice against women has been mistaken for authentic doctrine in the Church.
  • This prejudice adopted from the principles of ancient Roman Law has now become institutionalised in the Church. 
  • The prejudice against women is mistakenly presumed to be part of authentic Christian Tradition.  Because of this, women continue to be barred from holding any position of leadership or authority in the Church.

 
The cuckoo chick insists on being fed by its foster parent! 

This being so, how can anyone support the prohibition of women priests?  Because exclusion does not come from Christ, it is an issue which properly will not go away. The prohibitions against women is not based on authentic Tradition. It is a cuckoo's egg tradition.  Consequently, today when we see increasing unease among the faithful with the Vatican's hard line against women, we are seeing a faithful whose instincts are right! Though the faithful might know the details as to 'why', growing numbers instinctively feel there is something wrong with the exclusion of women from sacred ministry. Instinctively, those faithful to authentic Tradition know that:
  • Jesus would not have refused women.
  • the exclusion of women from holy orders stands in stark contradiction to the full equality of men and women in God’s sight.
For more about Dr. Wijngaards' book see here:

Dr. John Wijngaards
 
Learn more about Dr. Wijngaards and his work, see here:
Learning more about the habits of the cuckoo bird helped illustrate Dr. Wijngaards' explanation more vividly for me. For more about the bird, see here:
(Note: film footage in third bullet  item illustrates clearly the parasitic features of the bird.)

If you have any questions, let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~
post edited by Sophie - 2009/05/31 07:49:13
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 16:59:03 (permalink)

 
On this day May 30 in 1431 – Hundred Years' War: in Rouen, France, 19-year-old Joan of Arc is burned at the stake by an English-dominated tribunal.
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 17:08:48 (permalink)
Joan of Arc: a Catholic woman, patron saint of conscience
1412- 1431

At the time of Joan’s birth in 1412 English troops had been fighting on French soil for some 75 years occupying much of the country and preventing the coronation of a French king. In response to a number of promptings by voices she heard in prayer, Joan abandoned her peasant homelife to rally the armies of France and lead them to several significant victories. She achieved her goal of seeing the Dauphin crowned at Rheims as Charles VII, but when hostile forces at Compiegne captured her afterwards, King Charles left her to her fate. French clergy friendly to the English cause condemned Joan as a heretic - in part because she wore men’s clothing, but mostly because she refused to deny the reality of what she heard in prayer. She was burned at the stake on May 30, 1431, and her ashes were scattered in the Seine. Another Catholic tribunal exonerated her 25 years later, and she was canonized as a saint in 1920.

An English soldier made a crude cross of sticks and handed it to her shortly before she was burned. This nineteen-year-old martyr died rather than compromise the clear path shown by her conscience. In this she has been an inspiration for many -- including those who work for women's ordination -- in our own day.
Sophie
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 17:18:21 (permalink)
 
Therese of Lisieux -
dressed as Joan of Arc
Lisieux, France 1894

 
Dear friends,
 
Saint and Doctor of the Church, Therese of Lisieux held Joan of Arc in high regard.  Was it because Joan was a French predecessor? or because of Joan's courage in following convictions of conscience?
 
Many people do not know that St. Therese discerned in herself a vocation to the priesthood.  It preoccupied her to the end of her life.  She wrote about it, spoke boldly about it and believed that she would be a good preacher... in some ways even better than the priests that she heard.
 
In one of her writings, Therese recorded the words of her personal prayer:

I feel the vocation of the WARRIOR, THE PRIEST, THE APOSTLE, THE DOCTOR, THE MARTYR.  Finally, I feel the need and the desire of carrying out the most heroic deeds for You, O Jesus. I feel within my soul the courage of the Crusader, the Papal Guard, and I would want to die on the field of battle in defense of the Church. I feel in me the vocation of the PRIEST. With what love, O Jesus, I would take You in my hands when, at my voice, You would come down from heaven. And with what love would I give You to souls!

In another series of her writings, she records a premonition of her early death:

God will take me at an age [24] when I will not have had the time to become a priest ... If I could have been a priest, it would have been at this ordination that I would have received Holy Orders. Well, so that I would regret nothing, God is allowing me to be ill ... and I shall die before I have exercised my ministry. (St. Therese of Lisieux, 1897) 

Catherine Broome, OP a well known lecturer, writer and preacher based in Stockholm, Sweden contributes to our dialogue through her article, The Priestly Vocation of Therese of the Child Jesus.  As Broome points out, when Pope John Paul II proclaimed Therese a Doctor of the Church in 1997 (the third woman in Christian history to be honoured this way) through his words and deeds and guided by the Holy Spirit,  John Paul confirmed that Therese was sent by God to help our Church interpret the signs of the times and come ‘closer to the will of God.’

Enjoy the article! You can connect with it through this link:
http://www.womenpriests.org/called/broome.asp

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~
Sophie
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 17:26:38 (permalink)
 



Dear friends,

Our dedicated dialogue thread about St. Therese is found here: Saint Therese of Lisieux: Called to Priesthood  
 
If you are doing research about her, you will also find information of interest in our now archived thread: St Therese of Lisieux was called to be a priest.  Because it is in archives, it is available in read only format.
 
If you have any questions, please let me know.
 
with love and blessings,
 
~Sophie~  
Sophie
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 17:27:52 (permalink)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
On this day May 30 in 1871 – The Paris Commune falls.
Sophie
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RE: 2009 News Central, Items of Interest, Traffic Directions! 2009/05/30 17:36:16 (permalink)


Heroic agents of change:
 
On this day May 30 in 1989 - Tiananmen Square protests of 1989: the 33-foot high "Goddess of Democracy" statue is unveiled in Tiananmen Square by student demonstrators.
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