From our readers – December 8, 2016

| December 7, 2016 | 1 Comment

Priesthood, women and power

My letter regarding women priests in the last issue (“Rethinking women priests,” Nov. 24) was followed by a long quote by John Paul II, stating that the Church has no authority to ordain women. This raises the question: From whence does the authority arise to DENY the priesthood to half of the human race simply on the basis of gender? It is always a weak argument to assert that we must continue to do things in a certain way because they have always been done that way. How much progress would the human race make if that were the case in other fields of endeavor?

Carol Larsen
St. Stephen, Anoka

Jesus charged the Catholic Church with teaching the truth of his word, which the laity took with them back to their homes, into their communities and out into the world to make all mankind a reflection of the goodness of God himself. But he knew that man was very fallible, as warned in 2 Timothy 4:3, “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but have itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths.” Unfortunately, this has now become true, as a deteriorating world has now taken its partisan opinions and brought them into the Church, attempting to make it a reflection of the culture and tainting God’s original intentions. This is the reason some think there should be a discussion regarding women priests. They do not understand what the Church is.

Priestesses were a mark of pagan religions, and the Judeo-Christian teaching is something distinctly different from paganism. Beginning with Genesis 1:1 and throughout the Bible, there never were women priests; from the Old Testament with Judaism, through completion in the New Testament with the coming of Christ, this did not change. Remember, God’s judgment in all matters is perfect; he ought to know what he wants, after all, he is God!

Another point of confusion is to think that entry into the priesthood is somehow a position of power, when, actually, the priesthood is a life of service and total sacrifice. This is not a job to be filled, but rather it is a calling from God. For that matter, most men are not called to be priests, either. And was not the most perfectly created human being a woman, our Blessed Mother?

At her apparitions at Fatima, the Blessed Virgin told the children that a great challenge of our time would be people rebelling against their station in life, and is this not an example? Too many women have bought into the culture and do not understand why the Church cannot be made over to reflect what they see in society. The Catholic Church’s job is to preach the truth of Christ and tell us what is necessary to save our souls, not to tell us what we want to hear.

Further, I do not see criticisms of Mother Teresa of Calcutta and Pope John Paul II, who are canonized saints, being accurate. They both spent their lives in total sacrifice, while few of us walking around in this life have haloes.

I wish to thank our priests for the sacraments they dispense — and give thanks to God for his beautiful Church — which make it possible to have eternal life.

Ann Hill
St. Agnes, St. Paul

A letter writer in the Nov. 24 issue of The Catholic Spirit states: “Christ and his apostles were products of their culture.” I don’t know which Christ she follows, but the Christ I follow was a product of God’s goodness, born in humble circumstances of a woman conceived without sin, and sent into the world to fulfill the words of the prophets, including suffering the ignominious death on the cross for the sins of us all, which was foretold by the prophets.

Perhaps it might better be said that Christ was a product for the culture he served, and for which he invited followers, as planned by his Father from the beginning.

Gene Floersch
Our Lady of Peace, Minneapolis

Where’s the charity?

Of the millions of dollars given and spent in this archdiocese, I was so disheartened to learn that only about $46,000 was spent actually helping the needy in the community (Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis’ Financial Report, Nov. 24). The piece of pie in the graph was barely big enough to see. Wasn’t that what Jesus told us to do over and over and over? All that money for religious education down the drain.

Elizabeth Rosenwinkel
St. Albert the Great, Minneapolis

Thomas Mertens, the archdiocese’s chief financial officer, responds: The primary financial goals of the Archdiocese Chancery Corporation — as it moves forward in U.S. Bankruptcy Court — continue to be the fair and just resolution of more than 400 claims of sexual abuse of minors while supporting priests, parishes and schools. Thankfully, the faithful of the archdiocese continue their generous giving to organizations that help people in need, such as Sharing and Caring Hands, food shelves and the Catholic Services Appeal Foundation — which gives roughly $1.1 million to Catholic Charities each year.

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Category: From Readers