Feminists unhappy with Pope’s stand on women priests

November 9, 2016 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

Mumbai, November 9, 2016: Following Pope Francis’ reaffirmation last week that the Catholic Church’s ban on women priests “will continue forever”, feminist groups have raised the question of patriarchy in positions of power in the Church.

“The Catholic Church’s insistence that it cannot ordain women to the priesthood and episcopacy is a teaching likely to last forever,” Pope Francis had said during an airborne news conference on Nov. 1.

While a majority supports the Pope and there is no point in re-opening a closed debate, a section has initiated a discussion around priesthood for women. “Women’s priesthood is a thorny subject in the Catholic Church.

However, Pope Francis has taken several positive steps in the direction of women’s leadership, including his recent call for a study on women deacons and in several instances, appointing women to responsible positions in the Church,” said Virginia Saldanha, former executive secretary of the women’s commission of the Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI).

“We need a priesthood of service but what we have right now is a priesthood of rituals that aims to exercise a lot of power over people,” she added.

Godfrey Pimenta of the Watchdog Foundation, an organisation that works in the interest of the Christian community, says Jesus did not ordain any women apostles.

“The 12 apostles were all men. The tradition must stand,” said Pimenta.

“Although the idea of women priests is seen in the light of gender equality in the Church, it is not meant to be viewed that way. It is to be understood in terms of a call to serve, for which there are many other opportunities for women,” added Joseph Dias, general secretary of the Catholic Secular Forum.

– mumbai mirror

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