Thursday, 3 November 2016

No Women Priests! Cowardly Pope Blames His Predecessor.

Pope Francis - ban on women priests for ever, Pope John Paul II said so!
Pope Francis says women will never be Roman Catholic priests | World news | The Guardian.

Popes are supposed to be infallible and to be the absolute, ultimate authority on all spiritual and ecumenical matters - but not when it comes to trying to ride two horses simultaneously, it seems.

Face with a question from a Swiss journalist about whether women ever being admitted to the Catholic priesthood, Pope Francis confirmed that the ban would remain in place. When pressed he blamed Pope John Paul II who confirmed the ban in 1994, saying, "Saint Pope John Paul II had the last clear word on this and it stands, this stands".

When pressed further about whether this ban was, “But for ever, for ever? Never, never?”, the Pope again referred to the 1994 document, saying “If we read carefully the declaration by St John Paul II, it is going in that direction.”

The Pope was of course trying to pander to two opposing factions within the church - the fifty percent of Catholics who are regarded as unworthy of the task of being priests and the Church's heirarchy and Vatican Curia who are instinctively misogynistic and see women as a threat not only to their jobs but to their sex-obsessed spirituality. The people who have proved incapable of resisting the temptation of vulnerable children and adults would find it impossible to resists female colleagues working alongside them.

The Catholic Church resembles little more than a sex cult for the sexually repressed, so having those dreadful women around would be several steps too far.

In this space, we wrestled with the damaging effects of oppressive structures, knowing that patriarchy and hierarchy hurt us all. We discovered, time and again, that by sharing as equals and asking hard questions, we can transform ourselves, our church and our world.

Kate McElwee
co-executive director of the Women’s Ordination Conference
This announcement will disappoint those feminists in the Church who had hoped the Pope was signalling a change in dogma when he commissioned a study into the role of female deacons. This declaration and discovery of the power of veto that dead Popes exert from the grave, marks a retreat from the possibility of reform into the cosy comfort of dogma established by someone long dead and later given the sanctity of sainthood.

The declaration came the day after Pope Francis signed a joint declaration with Lutherans to commemorate the Reformation - that great schism in the Western Christian Church. Curiously, both side appear to have forgotten that the schism was so important and so profound that multiple murderous wars were fought over it, especially the Thirty Years War in which half the population of parts of Europe were massacred by one side of the other. The joint declaration said that there was more that united the two factions than there was that divided them. A declaration that would have rung as hollow to the victims of the warring factions as today's announcement does to those who had high hopes for reform.

Quite why women would want to be Priest in a faith which officially regards them as an inferior type of human being, born to be ruled over by men, is quiet beyond me but the issue here is one of equal rights and equal opportunity for people to chose their own careers. Once again the Catholic Church has come out against equal rights and for division and discrimination, and of course for privilege and job protection for the men who govern it.

And once again the Pope has had to pull back from the promised reforms because he is not strong enough to stand up to the institutionalised misogyny and vested interests of the Curia and college of Cardinals.

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