Saturday, January 31, 2009

They Want Back, Too

Supported by Tradition and law, many will see it as apples and oranges... but even so -- lest anyone didn't see it coming after the Lefevbrist "remit" -- the excommunicated women who've claimed priestly ordination over recent years now seek a similar revocation of their sanctions.

Press Release snips:
Roman Catholic Womenpriests call on Pope Benedict to lift the decree of automatic excommunication issued on May 29, 2008 against all in our movement as a gesture of reconciliation and justice toward women in the church. As is well known, the Congregation for Bishops, instructed by the Pope, removed the excommunication of four traditionist [sic] bishops on Jan. 21, 2009. Therefore, Roman Catholic Womenpriests call on the Pope to lift the decree of excommunication against us. This gesture will be a step away from the institutional church’s treatment of women as second-class citizens. We stand firmly in the tradition of Vatican ll which declares:

"Any kind of social or cultural discrimination in basic personal rights on the grounds of sex, race, color, social conditions, language or religion, must be curbed and eradicated as incompatible with God's design." Gaudium et Spes, art. 29, 2

No priest pedophiles have been excommunicated.
No bishops who were responsible for their continued placement in parishes after their pedophile history was known have been excommunicated.

Theologians who teach and support Vatican II teachings and who support women's ordination are silenced and/or excommunicated.
Women ordained as priests are excommunicated.
Priests and laity who support women priests are excommunicated.
Priests who reject Vatican II and who deny the holocaust and who openly deny the full equality of women are "rehabilitated" after earlier excommunication?

What's wrong with this picture?
Last year, after individual excommunications for participants in the rites (usually held on boats) were announced by decree, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith definitively stated that anyone who attempts to confer ordination on a woman, or any woman who seeks the same, incurs automatic excommunication. Subsequently, the CDF excommunicated Fr Roy Bourgeois, a Maryknoll priest and longtime social-justice activist who participated in one of the ceremonies.

On a related note, one figure surprisingly silent over the last week is the excommunicated prelate who's arguably the best known of all -- the Zambian exorcist/soul-singer Emmanuel Milingo, ordained archbishop of Lusaka by Paul VI in 1969, then brought into the Roman Curia a decade later amid suspicions over some of his practices.

After marrying a member of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon's Unification church in a 2001 mass wedding, then renouncing her later that summer after pleas from John Paul II, Milingo reunited with Maria Sung in 2006 and founded a movement dedicated to ending the Latin church's discipline of mandatory celibacy for priests.

Initially suspended from ministry, Milingo was excommunicated following his illicit ordination of four married clergy from breakaway groups as bishops in a September 2006 liturgy in Washington; the four were likewise sanctioned. The Holy See ruled the ordinations invalid.

PHOTO: Steve Mellon/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette