Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Canon Outlaw

Photo courtesy of Eyegoddess Films

Do you know what the Roman Catholic Church's Canon Law Number 1024 says?

Are you ready for this?

ONLY baptized men can receive holy orders.  Only MEN can become priests.  ONLY men.

Well, thank God, a renegade group of holy and highly educated women started to change all of this in a movement that began fifteen or so years ago.

If you were brought up in the RC tradition, you might not ever have given thought to the fact that there actually is a law which forbids women to become priests, that the hierarchy of the church is reserved for men only and that this is a man-made, not God-made law that has absolutely no basis.  The documentary "Pink Smoke Over the Vatican" is, at the very least, an eye-opener and it is one that all people who believe that things are the way they are and always will be need to see.  The beautifully done film follows the group of women who walked smack into the face of adversity and stared it down, becoming ordained priests and bishops, totally ignoring the threat of excommunication. It infuriates me when I think that anyone, man or woman, can make the decision to throw somebody out of a church, to strip them naked of their right to enter into and participate in, a house of worship.  Who the hell do they think they are anyway?  God?

The ordained women of Pink Smoke speak of their strong desires and not one of them displays a lack of respect for their church nor do they appear to be militant or "dangerous" in any way.  Yet, the leaders of the church consider them to be just that, "dangerous" and problematic.  The church official who comments throughout this film does not seem to have any real explanation for why women can't become priests, he just tells the viewer that they can't.....because they can't.  He forgets ancient church history, pieces left for dead and buried forever.  There were women priests and married priests, even a female apostle!  But we are not given that information, ever. Rarely do we see women credited for anything in the church and never are we reminded that when Jesus rose from the dead, it was a woman, Saint Mary Magdalene, to whom he immediately made his presence known.  Not a man.  A woman, bearing witness to the resurrection.

So, how were these brave modern women ordained?  It all started when a small handful of women were given what the church considered to be "temporary" holy orders. They were to be "de-frocked" when their  job was done but they disobeyed and well, long story short, they, in turn, started ordaining other women on ships, far from the shores of any archdiocese. Brilliant move.  You can't invoke a ruling if you have no jurisdiction.

Ex-communication?  I don't think so.

Get ready for the ladies, gentlemen of the church.  They are here, and they are smart. Smart enough to know that Canon Law is not God's law and that the days of male domination in the church are numbered.With their help and their patience with outdated feudal governance that is currently destroying the church, pink may very well become the new white collar.  Amen.

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