Monday, May 20, 2013

Ordination in Cincinnati-Dr. Debra Meyers-Press Release

Historic First Ordination in Cincinnati as Dr. Debra Meyers will be ordained a Roman Catholic Woman Priest

Release date: May 7, 2013

Contact: Janice Sevre-Duszynska, D.Min. (media) 859-684-4247,

Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan, 703-505-0004,

Dr. Debra Meyers, 513-735-2876,

On Saturday, May 25, 2013, Dr. Debra Meyers of Batavia, Ohio will be ordained a priest in the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests. The presiding bishop will be Bridget Mary Meehan of Falls Church, Virginia and Sarasota, Florida. The ceremony will take place at 1 p.m. at St. John's Unitarian Universalist Church, 320 Resor Ave., Cincinnati, Ohio 45220.

All are welcome.

Media are invited to a pre-ordination conference on Saturday, May 25, at 11:30 a.m. at the church with the candidate and Bridget Mary Meehan. Call Janice (859-684-4247) to schedule an interview. Respectful filming/photo taking during the ceremony is acceptable.

The ordained is theologically prepared and has many years of experience in ministry.

Dr. Debra Meyers earned a Ph.D. in History and Women's Studies and a MA in Religious Studies with an emphasis on pastoral care. The author of several books, she is a professor of History and Women's Studies at Northern Kentucky University. Her ministry focuses primarily on single mothers and their children who make up the vast majority of impoverished people in our country. She also serves the Resurrection Community in Cincinnati where they are living the Gospel of equality and social justice. Dr. Meyers is a wife, the mother of two successful children and a grandmother.

"God called me to the Catholic priesthood as a child and every step of my academic and spiritual life as well as my social justice activism has prepared me to serve God's people as a pastor," said Dr. Meyers. "I thank ARCWP for the opportunity to fulfill God's call."

Since two-thirds of the world's poor are women, justice and equality must be top priorities for our church. Our world and church can no longer function without the voices of women's lived experience. Women priests are visible reminders that all women are images of God.

On March 13, five hours before the new pope was elected, a woman priest celebrated Mass in Rome. The church is at a crossroads with a new pope and women priests. This paradigm represents a holy shakeup and is pregnant with potential for renewal and change. Pope Francis's simplicity and solidarity with the poor and marginalized is the Good News that Catholics have been waiting for. Now is the time to embrace women.

We are encouraged by the tender gesture of Pope Francis who washed the feet of women in prison on Holy Thursday, thus breaking the sexist tradition of washing only men's feet.

During the Easter homily Francis affirmed women as the first witnesses to the Resurrection. "This tells us that God does not choose according to human criteria...The women are driven by love and know how to accept this proclamation with faith: they believe, and immediately transmit it, they do not keep it for themselves."

Women who have accepted the call from God to priesthood and who have become women priests want to share "the joy of knowing that Jesus is alive, the hope that fills their heart."

The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests calls on Francis to embrace the full equality of women, including women priests.

Women priests are answering the call and our movement is growing since it began in 2002 with the ordination of seven women on the Danube. There are now 150 in our Roman Catholic Women Priests' Movement in the world, including 100 in the U.S. living and serving in over 60 inclusive Catholic communities and welcoming all to receive the sacraments.

According to a recent CBS Gallup Poll, over 70% of Catholics in the U.S. support women priests. There is no shortage of vocations as women are now saying "Yes" to this call and are being ordained. Two women will be ordained priests and two will be ordained deacons in Falls Church, Virginia in June.


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