The People Speak Out

Local voices connecting globally

This is important: to get to know people, listen, expand the circle of ideas. The world is crisscrossed by roads that come closer together and move apart, but the important thing is that they lead towards the Good.  (Pope Francis)

Canon Law 212 calls upon the laity to speak up:

2 - The Christian faithful are free to make known to the pastors of the Church their needs, especially spiritual ones, and their desires.

§3. - According to the knowledge, competence, and prestige which they possess, they have the right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful, without prejudice to the integrity of faith and morals, with reverence toward their pastors, and attentive to common advantage and the dignity of persons.

I have not left the Church entirely, but don’t go to Mass every Sunday anymore. I do not like being discriminated against because I am a woman, especially in my place of worship. My decision stems from the decision of my parish priest a few years ago that only men and boys could have their feet washed on Holy Thursday – a retrograde step as it had happened before that. I dislike the way women are treated – expected to provide the clean linens, sparkle the vessels, prepare the altar, but stay away from the deaconate and other duties. I also dislike the changed language of the Mass – having lived through the Latin, the first change into the vernacular, the second and now the third again. I have friends who are priests in the Anglican and Methodist Churches – wonderful women, and I grieve that a good friend of mine who is a Catholic theologian and felt called to the priesthood, could never become one. After our battle when I lived in another town more than 20 years ago, to have women and men have their feet washed, the priest accepted the change and she was one of the women chosen. As he washed her feet, a feather drifted down from the rafters into my hands – a symbol I felt of acceptance and love. So, where to now?

{jcomments on}