Joe wrote: “Posted by Joe on Tuesday, Jan 8, 2013 8:33 PM (EDT):Terah James, I’m confused about what you say about “women have never been given their God-ordained roles in the institutional church.” Did God not honor the Mother of Our Saviour? Is she not the perfect example of womanhood and feminine qualities?”
Joe - I am a convert to Catholicism. Before my conversion, I had some knowledge of how the Christian church structure was to be, at least on a local parish level.
Mandated celibacy is a hot-button issue & unlike the famous Evangelical converts to Roman Catholic, such as most columnists on National Catholic Register, I just do not see that any ordained man (priest, bishop or pope) was expected to promise never to marry a woman, or to be unmarried, when he is ordained. In fact, the opposite is true. Paul wrote that men in ordained church ministry are ideally, married with children.
The roles for women in the institutional church is two-fold: 1) as the wife of an ordained man, and 2) as a deaconess, which is a service oriented role for the church, illustrated by Deaconess Phoebe, mentioned in the last chapter of Paul’s letter to the Romans.
Until the church begins to recognize the qualifications mentioned in Scripture, as the “ideal”, women will continue to demand to be ordained to the priesthood, and women will continue to take the positions of lay “Pastor” of parishes (something they ought not be doing) and women will continue to be decision-makers in seminaries, keeping good men (that threaten their power) out, IF the good men are indeed there. Another consequence of side-stepping the qualifications for men, per Scripture, is there is a huge amount of homosexual males now in the seminary and they are being ordained to the priesthood, so it’s not even a “sacrifice” for them to give up marriage to a woman, and forgo a family.
The big question is not if these homosexual men have had same-sex partners in their lives (such as would be a BIG concern of St. Paul’s, and it would most likely eliminate them from the pool of candidates), but rather, for entrance to a seminary, the question is if they had a same-sex relationship “lately”.