11 July 2008

The Catholic Church -- misogyny triumphant

So the Church of England has voted to allow women to be consecrated as bishops. Hallelujah! The heartland of the Anglican community has finally caught up to its brothers and sisters in Canada, the United States, Australia, New Zealand and Scotland.

Some 1,300 clergy opposed to the measure had threatened to leave the Church if safeguards they demanded, such as male "super-bishops" to cater for those who opposed the change, weren't implemented. One traditionalist, the Right Reverend John Broadhurst, Bishop of Fulham, declared, "I think a lot of us have made it quite clear if there isn't proper provision for us to live in dignity, inevitably we're driven out." All were disappointed. The women will be bishops equal to men, despite Reverend Broadhurst's dignity problem.

But the remnants of resistance to women's equality in the Church of England were topped by the reaction of the Catholic Church. The Vatican denounced the decision, stating, "Such a decision signifies a breaking away from the apostolic tradition maintained by all of the churches since the first millennium, and is a further obstacle for reconciliation between the Catholic church and the Church of England." Note the reference to "all the churches" -- so much for the Baptists, Presbyterians, United, etc.

The "apostolic tradition" the statement refers to is the notion that only men should be priests because all Christ's apostles were men. But weren't all the apostles also Jewish? So how to justify a German pope? This is nonsense. Women have been largely excluded from all positions of power from biblical times to very recently. The "apostolic tradition" is nothing more than an attempt to use historic prejudice to justify current prejudice.

What is it about women in power that offends, even frightens, priests? After all, it may have taken centuries but they eventually overcame their fear of heliocentricity and evolution. The equality of women shouldn't be that much more difficult. A little soul-searching on the subject might just open up a whole new world of possibilities for them.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, it looks like women are starting to catch up to the mighty man. As a "confirmed" Anglican and a follower of the church and the faith, you must be very happy. However, there are some of us that may not believe in the whole religeous rituals and that the allowing women as equals into a declining profession may not be that much an accomplishment