What Can We Do to Support Women’s Equality in the Church, Including Ordination?
Some suggestions from the Minnesota Saint Joan’s Community and elsewhere, put together by Dorothy Irvin
1 Get the Important Historical Background!
There are seven really significant books in English on the historical reality of Catholic women’s ordination and other ministries Buy and read them all. Or…
- Since they have been read and reported on by knowledgeable Catholics, learn a lot in a short time just by reading all seven comprehensive reports, each one to two pages long. They are all included in the The Poster Packet. On sale at this conference, $3.00 or order from email@example.com
- The Poster Packet includes Dr. Catherine Clark Kroeger’s study guide to women in the Old and New Testaments. Work through it alone or with a group to gain new understanding of many positive passages attesting to women’s equality in Judaism and early Christianity. Surprises guaranteed!
- The Poster Packet also includes a one-page list of 20 books on Catholic women’s ordination and a map showing where archaeological records of women’s ordination have been found
- And The Poster Packet is itself a two-sided poster suitable for hanging. One side is a time line, the other a map, and both sides show the ministries of ordained Catholic women today, in color.
entire Poster Packet $3.00
2 For the technical information about the archaeological finds, together with relevant Bible passages and historical setting, see The Rebound:
- a composite of the first five annual calendars showing the archaeological documentation of the ordination of women in the early church. This spiral-bound book of large color photographs has been expanded by the addition of 17 new articles on Catholic women’s ordination.
- It includes the Significant Seven book reports, the reading list, the Bible study guide, and the most recent edition of the map of archaeological finds.
- On sale at this conference, $25
3 Better Yet:
invite Dorothy Irvin, S.T.D. (pontifical doctorate in theology) to give a slide lecture for your group. Select from biblical material, archaeological and historical photographs, Vatican documents, or a mixture. For details, call 612-387-3784 or go to firstname.lastname@example.org.
4 Keep up With the Ongoing Story of Ordained Catholic Women Today!
Women who feel called to the priesthood are currently being ordained here in the U.S. and elsewhere in apostolic succession from a male Roman Catholic bishop in good standing, who felt compelled in conscience to restore our churches early history of ordaining women.
- Read about how this happened in Women Find a Way: The Movement and Stories of Roman Catholic Women Priests, by Elsie Hainz McGrath, Bridget Mary Meehan, and Ida Raming. On sale at this conference or order from Virtual Bookworm.
- Get current information about these ordinations from the Roman Catholic Womenpriests website.
- Make plans to attend an ordination and bring your (also men) friends.
- Enjoy the exciting news and outspoken commentaries at Bridget Mary’s Blog.
- Keep up with the doings of the Women’s Ordination Conference in the US.
- Read the documentation plentifully supplied by John Wijngaards at womenpriests.org.
5 Watch for the appearance of Pink Smoke over the Vatican,
a documentary on Catholic women’s ordination today.
6 Find out about Lydia’s Gathering.
Unlike the diocesan and order seminarians we have known, women preparing for ordination have to pay for their theological education and ordination costs themselves, as well as the expenses of setting up their ministries. Lydia’s Gathering, a project of the Minnesota Saint Joan’s Community, has set up two endowments having 501-(c)-(3) tax-deductible status, to offer financial support to these women.
7 Saint Joan’s International Alliance is an NGO (non-governmental organization) at the United Nations.
Men and women, Catholic or not, become a member and you can attend the annual Conference on the Status of Women at the United Nations in New York, where you will participate with women and men from around the world working to better the status of women. Will our church work for or against the health, dignity, and well-being of women? (dues $30 per year)
- To find out more, or join, call 612-387-3784
8 Attend Mass
celebrated locally by Roman Catholic Women Priests, or invite one to celebrate with your group.
For the Twin Cities call 561-278-6630 or go to the Dignity Twin Cities website.
9 Experience Gender Equality in Other Churches:
ask in your area
10 Affirm the Priesthood of the Faithful
Have a look at Brother Tom Draney’s site, Reclaiming the Eucharist as Meal and see how the earliest Eucharistic gatherings in house churches can be prayerfully re-experienced today in the context of an actual potluck meal in a home. An important spiritual event for a small Christian community or other bunch of friends.
- Twin Cities: 612-387-3784. For other areas visit the web site.
11 Help Produce a Documentary
on the archaeology of women’s ordination in the early church. Much of the work is done already, but we need readers and speakers.
If you are willing to volunteer, let Dorothy Irvin know. 612-387-3784, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. Or email email@example.com.
12 Join our Pilgrimage to Rome
See for yourself the remaining traces of women deacons, priests, and bishops. Pray in churches and catacombs where their names and faces are still visible today. Although many were slaves themselves, they worked for women’s education, an end to gladiatorial games, an end to the Greek men’s custom of using adolescent boys for sex, rescue of girl infants set out to die, care for the poor, resistance to war, and good relations between different religions, different social levels, and men and women.
- The trip is still in the planning stages, but sign up at this conference to be notified as it develops, or contact Dorothy Irvin at 612-387-3784 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We are planning to make this trip as low-cost as possible. .