Women Priests Stand in Solidarity with Prophet of Justice, Fr. Roy Bourgeois
Press Release: March 12, 2012
From: The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests
Contact: Janice Sevre-Duszynska: email@example.com; 859-684-4247
Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan, sofiaBMM@aol.com; 941-955-2313; 703-505-0004
The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests stands in solidarity with Maryknoll Fr. Roy Bourgeois and supports the action of the order's General Council to retain him.
Last week three members of the Maryknoll General Council abstained from voting to dismiss Fr. Roy Bourgeois, a longtime peace activist, from the order which has been his community for 46 years. They are Maryknoll Frs. Paul Masson, the Society's vicar general, Jose Aramburu, an assistant general, and an unnamed priest.
Two council members voted in favor of dismissal: Maryknoll Fr. Edward Dougherty, the superior general of the order, and Maryknoll Fr. Edward McGovern, an assistant general.
Fr. Roy participated in the ordination of Janice Sevre-Duszynska on Aug. 9, 2008 in Lexington, Kentucky and has continued to speak out publicly in support of women priests.
"In these times of increasing attacks on women's freedom in all facets of society," said Bridget Mary Meehan, bishop of the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests, "we celebrate Fr. Roy's freedom of conscience and courage to stand with women who are called by God to the priesthood. Our church and world community cry out for the compassion, justice-making and vision of women priests and all women. As living images of Christ, women are given freedom of conscience and must speak for themselves."
The ARCWP community walk in solidarity with our brother priest Roy Bourgeois whose life's work as a Maryknoll priest has been to challenge the "rulers, principalities and powers," that bring injustice and oppression in our world. Father Roy has consistently and prophetically challenged systems of power, whether they be governments, the military, multi-national global corporations or the church to follow the Gospel teaching of Jesus. As founder of the School of the Americas Watch, Fr. Roy has given voice to our sisters and brothers in Latin America who have suffered because of "guns and greed," as Roy has taught us.
We call on the Maryknoll community to support and celebrate Fr. Roy as a prophet.
We demand an immediate end to the unjust and unhealthy atmosphere of fear and intimidation created by the Vatican and carried out through our bishops and heads of religious orders to those who openly express disagreement with Church teaching. As Roy has reminded us, "those who disagree with church teaching should not be excommunicated or lose their pensions."
We challenge all religious orders and our brother priests at the Vatican to build up the community as Jesus did: by empowering and liberating.
We are living within a movement of grace called forth by Wisdom Sophia, a people-loving Spirit, who has pitched her tent beside us. She embraces and celebrates her prophets. Let us welcome Her Spirit and rejoice for our prophetic brother, Fr. Roy Bourgeois.