In recent times there has been a call from some in society for the catholic church to give women more prominence and maybe to even ordain them as priests because of the perceived inequality within the church. How strange this is for in doing so people are denying the great role women have played in the church from the beginning and denies the true value of religious or consecrated women as the brides of Christ. Some forget that after The Father, Our Lord, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit the one held in highest esteem by the church is The Blessed Virgin, Mary. The mother of Our Lord, is venerated and looked to as the greatest and purest human that is not divine. She has many special feast days and numerous churches named after her. Some religious congregations are marian centred. Then there are all the prayers asking for our mother’s intercession and help including of course the powerful recitation of the rosary.
People should also remember the value of religious or consecrated women, these holy women are brides of Christ who devote their lives to him and have had a massive influence on the church through their vocations. The spirituality of the religious sisters often is so deep and so mystical as they are drawn into a deep union of love with Christ. Many spend their lives praying for the salvation of souls and because of this many souls are saved. Many spend their time praying for the church and because of this the church is strengthened. Throughout the church the sisters run or help run departments within diocese. They help educate the young and those seeking to know God. They spend time with the poor, the sick and the needy being the signs of Christ’s love to all. Four of the doctors of the church are women which indeed is a high accolade; St.Hildegard of Bingen, Catherine of Siena, Teresa of Ávila and Thérèse of Lisieux. These four have enriched not only the church but the lives of so many. None of these holy women called for the ordination of women because they knew that women within the church had a different but highly valued and important role in the church. Valued by God and by the church even if at times some within the church have not appreciated this or respected it. The role of women is so important that even popes listened to the advice of holy women such as St. Catherine. There are hundreds upon hundreds of women saints declared by the church. Also several great women saints are mentioned in the liturgy of the Mass.
Unfortunately the political correctness of today and the desire to change the will of God in creation and in lives leads people to devalue the role of women in the church and not recognise the great blessing they are. The call for ordination of women is a fruit of today’s self centred society where many believe they should have whatever they want regardless of what God’s will is.Yes there have been times when women and others have not been treated as they should be within the church but this is not because of church teaching but because of maybe a misunderstanding of that teaching or because of the prideful weakness of some within the church. All should remember the church is the body of Christ and we are part of that body. Different parts that unite to be one body in Christ. God created us to be different so that man and woman in life and in the church will have different roles to play but all with the same goal…to bring mankind to live in the fullness of Christ to live in the fullness of His love so that in Him we can be one love. Let us all accept that will and see each other as equal but different and let us thank God for those differences, appreciate them and value them.
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