In reference to the Messenger’s story (Feb. 12) about the shortage of diocesan priests, someone once suggested that repeatedly doing the same thing but expecting different results is insane. That’s exactly what our church is doing about the shortage of priests, continuing to rely on single males as our sole source of supply.
We the members keep allowing the Vatican, based solely on gender, to discriminate against women in their right to the reception of all seven sacraments. The Vatican’s stated reason is because that’s the way Jesus did things, as if the church has never done anything differently from what Jesus did.
Take, for instance, how the early church ordained married men to become clergy. Jesus chose married Peter as our first pope. The Vatican’s rules are so convoluted that it allows married men to become priests in the Eastern rite and married Anglican priests who convert to Catholicism to serve in the Roman rite. This is crazy!
Why do we assume the Holy Spirit works only from the top down and never up from the grassroots level? Why have our needs become secondary to Vatican prejudices? Women have a right to the reception of all seven sacraments and we the members of the church have a right to an adequate supply of competently trained, ordained priests. Gender or marital status has nothing to do with competence or ability to serve.
A body at rest tends to remain at rest. Until more Catholics demand change our church’s inertia will remain stuck doing things the same way, but expecting different results. As increasingly fewer of us will have the services of a priest.