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Thursday, May 12, 2016

And On and On We Go: Female Deacons Next?

Pope Francis opens another can of worms!
Francis to create commission to study female deacons in Catholic church

At the recent meeting in Rome of the International Union of Superiors General, the pope agreed that a commission to study the question of women deacons was a good idea. According to press reports, when challenged about it, he responded, "I believe yes. It would do good for the church to clarify this point. I am in agreement. I will speak to do something like this.”

Pope Saint John Paul II closed the question of women's ordination in 1994, but here we go again. Of course this is being reported in the press with headlines like this:
Pope Francis: Let’s study possibility of ordaining women deacons
Pope Francis says he's willing to create a commission to study whether women can serve as deacons in the Catholic Church, signaling the possibility of letting women serve in ordained ministry
Pope Francis: Let’s study possibility of ordaining women deacons 
Can this latest off the cuff response to a question do anything but once again imply the possibility of women's ordination? The diaconate is an ordained ministry. If women can be ordained as deacons who assist in serving Mass; why not the priesthood? Even if a commission recommends ordination, it can hardly be allowed by the Holy Spirit. But like the Birth Control Commission did, it can raise false hopes and exacerbate the disunity of an already-divided Church.

And then there's the question of infallibility. If Hans Kung isn't lying (a definite possibility since his entire pretense of being a Catholic is a lie), the pope agreed in a letter to discuss the doctrine of infallibility with him. Here's what Kung wrote in a statement published by the National Catholic Reporter:
Francis has set no restrictions. He has thus responded to my request to give room to a free discussion on the dogma of infallibility. I think it is now imperative to use this new freedom to push ahead with the clarification of the dogmatic definitions, which are a ground for controversy within the Catholic church and in its relationship to the other Christian churches. 
I could not have foreseen then quite how much new freedom Francis would open up in his post-synodal exhortation, Amoris Laetitia. Already in the introduction, he declares, "Not all discussions of doctrinal, moral or pastoral issues need to be settled by interventions of the magisterium." 
He takes issue with "cold bureaucratic morality" and does not want bishops to continue behaving as if they were "arbiters of grace." He sees the Eucharist not as a reward for the perfect but as "nourishment for the weak."... 
...Francis no longer wants to be the sole spokesman of the church. 
This is the new spirit that I have always expected from the magisterium. I am fully convinced that in this new spirit a free, impartial and open-ended discussion of the infallibility dogma, this fateful key question of destiny for the Catholic church, will be possible.
Kung had his license to teach in a Catholic institution revoked in 1979. Since then he has continued to do all in his power to undermine Church teaching on many issues including women's ordination, a door Pope St. John Paul II clearly closed in his apostolic letter, Ordinatio Sacerdotalis (Pentecost 1994). After giving numerous examples of the continuous Church teaching that orders are reserved to men, Pope John Paul II concluded:
Wherefore, in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church's divine constitution itself, in virtue of my ministry of confirming the brethren (cf. 22:32) I declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church's faithful.
If Pope Francis does one thing exceedingly well it's opening cans of worms. And the dissenters all pounce to feed on them. Let's pray every day for Holy Mother Church. The gates of hell will never prevail, but the assault is relentless! St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church, pray for us.


Anonymous said...

This is a very poor choice of topics to be "discussed" at this time by the Pope or any of us. There are much greater issues requiring our attention if we are truly interested in strengthening the position of the Church and its message in today's society. We are letting social media and political correctness to corrupt much of our lives as it is, no need to invite their ability to control our lives into the sanctuary.

Anonymous said...

Seems like a slow creep to women priests. Very worrisome.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

We'll never get women priests -- impossible. But I agree with you both that it is worrisome. It just creates more confusion and scandalizes the poorly catechized faithful who already believe they can pick and choose doctrine according to their badly-formed consciences.

Anonymous said...

Why is it the Pope is constantly being quoted and so often conservatives do not give him the benefit of the doubt. No doctorine has suggested be changed, no one is saying let's move on to ordaining woman priests. Let's put all of our gossip towards prayer for our Holy Father and the church and ask the Holy Spirit to enlighten us as to what is God's will. Panic is not from God it is from the devil. Let us remember what Padre Pio said about prayer - Pray hope and don't worry - our merciful Lord will hear your prayers.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

Prayer is absolutely essential, I agree. But isn't it good to pray with your eyes open? This pope now has a pretty extensive track record that is not encouraging to the orthodox (not "conservatives").

Today, on the 99th anniversary of the first apparition of Fatima, I'm offering my rosary for the Holy Father and for the poor battered bride of Christ, Holy Mother Church.

c matt said...

To be fair, he was previously given the benefit of the doubt (Synod on the "Family"), and has cleared up all doubts (AL). So why should he be given any benefit of the doubt? Trust, once broken, needs to be earned, unless you want to simply be taken for a fool.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

c. matt, that's what I used to tell my children. "If I catch you in a lie, how can I know in the future whether you are lying or telling the truth?" Of course, this pope, being a Jesuit, avoids direct lies. He seems to prefer ambiguity and confusion.

Catechist Kev said...

"Of course, this pope, being a Jesuit, avoids direct lies. He seems to prefer ambiguity and confusion."


As I like ask, Mary Ann - whose realm is that?

Confused Catechist Kev

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

I'm about one third through your book, Kevin. It's great. I'll be doing a review probably in a few weeks after we are on the other side of two confirmations. :)

Catechist Kev said...

Good afternoon, Mary Ann. :^)

Happy Feast of St. Matthias to you!

I appreciate your kind words about our book, "The Language of Dissent."

Two confirmations! Wonderful. :^)

We have a Holy Matrimony we'll be celebrating later this year. Our oldest daughter's. She is marrying a fine fellow who is joining the Church. Our pastor has asked me (and my lovely bride) to help with his catechesis. It's been fun, but he does occasionally have that... how shall I say it? - what I call a cow-staring-at-a-new-gate look on his face! LOL

Let's just say there is nothing uh... *confusing* about what our soon-to-be-son-in-law is receiving from my wife and me.

Just the facts, ma'am. (in my best Jack Webb voice)