Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Commentary on NCR article by Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan

"Maryknoll Priest Who Backs Women's Ordination Detained at Vatican" NCR/ "Vatican Gift that Keeps on Giving" by Bridget Mary Meehan
Janice Sevre-Duszynska, a Roman Catholic Woman Priest, is confronted by Italian police as she approaches St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Oct. 17. Fr. Roy participated in her ordination in Lexington, KY in 2008. This prophetic stance resulted in his excommunication. Janice was not arrested nor detained. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
NCR "The demonstrators, including two women who claimed to be priests and one a deacon, walked from Castel Sant'Angelo to St. Peter's Square carrying banners that said "God is calling women to be priests" and "Ordain Catholic women" while singing and beating a small tambourine."
BMM:The two women are priests: Janice Sevre-Duszynska, Ree Hudson, and Donna Rougeux, a deacon .   Interesting that neither the women priests, nor deacon were arrested or detained by police, while Erin Hanna of the Women's Ordination Conference and Miriam Duigian of Womenpriests.org,(neither woman is ordained) were detained as was Fr. Roy. What message is the Vatican sending here?  
NCR "Police explained to the group that it was illegal to hold a demonstration without a permit and that it would have been more appropriate to have called Vatican officials ahead of time in order to deliver the petition.
"It's not like delivering a pizza, you can't just show up" unannounced and without authorization, the undercover police officer said.
"It's a very important pizza," one of the demonstrators shouted."
BMM: Truly, the Vatican is the gift that keeps on giving! Now that explanation really takes the cake, the piazza or whatever!!! This sounds like the dialogue in a comedy late night show like Saturday Night Live. You really could not make this stuff up!
NCR: "Father Bourgeois was told several times by the Italian police that they could not prevent him from entering St. Peter's Square by   himself   to try to deliver the petition to someone in the Vatican, but the group as a whole and specifically the women dressed as priests could not enter the square because "their form of dress is a form of protest."
BMM: No wonder the Vatican officials in a snit! The Curia cannot abide the sight of women in vestments! If only   Fr. Roy showed up a alone without these pesky tambourine playing women priests , all would have beeen well. The doors of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith would swing open and there Cardinal Levada would step out to welcome Roy in for a friendly chat. And of course, accept the 15,000 petitions. (Everyone knows- the rules! No, never must female priests cross into the Vatican, sacred shrine of male domination in the Roman Catholic Church!)  
NCR "However, the situation grew tense when police tried to confiscate the group's banners and fliers. Members of the group refused because the vinyl banners cost a lot to produce, one demonstrator explained."
"Because of their refusal to hand over the banners peacefully, Father Bourgeois and two members of the group, Erin Saiz Hanna, executive director of the Women's Ordination Conference, and Miriam Duignan of WomenPriests.org, were brought to a nearby Italian police station. They were not arrested and no charges were made against them."
BMM: Come on, can anyone believe, this whole dustup with the police was about vinly banners? Why would the Roman police want banners advertising women priests now? Evidence, you say, really of what? Obviously, the women's presence said it all! What is this about -- gathering sourvenirs for pilgrims? Or hey, wait a minute. could there be something a bit sinister going on here? Is there someone in the Vatican, thinking ahead a hundred years or so, of a banner display in the Vatican museum. Or perhaps, they could be photo copied for holy cards or perhaps, even become relics! Don't laugh! stranger things have happened in the Catholic Church. Just read the history!  
Speaking of history or in this case we should say "herstory", Roman Catholic Women Priests may be a revolution to the Vatican but we are a holy shakeup welcomed by millions of Catholics in the church and beyond!  
Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP
Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests

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