Okay, this has nothing to do with Geelong specifically, but here's one man in Melbourne who speaks out from the heart and says something that I totally agree with. As a member of the Uniting Church I strongly feel that men and women both can be excellent pastors in the various churches. We have had women as church leaders for generations. Why on earth do these men (in frocks) continue with their medieval thinking about women. Good on you Greg.The Age
today.Catholic priest risks his future by calling for women clergy
November 19, 2010
GREG Reynolds is grateful that heretics are no longer burnt at the stake. But the Catholic parish priest at Western Port knows that he will be dismissed after this article because Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart has told him so.
Father Reynolds, 57, delivered a homily in his three parish churches two months ago saying it was God's will for the church to have women priests and that, by refusing them, the church was obstructing the work of the Holy Spirit.
So none of his congregation would feel the need to report him, he sent his homily to Archbishop Hart.
''I am convinced in my heart that it is God's will that we should have women priests … I feel prompted by the Holy Spirit to share my position publicly, and yet very reluctantly,'' the sermon said.
''I believe certain women are being called by God to the ministerial priesthood, and our official church is obstructing the work of the Holy Spirit. I feel I can no longer sit back and remain silent.''
He conceded that as ''an insignificant little parish priest'' he lacked the profound theological training to contradict papal teaching, ''but some things you just know in your heart, in the core of your being''.
Father Reynolds has since had amicable discussions with auxiliary bishop Tim Costelloe, then the archbishop himself, who warned the priest that if he went public the archbishop would be forced to dismiss him. Father Reynolds re-examined the arguments but remained convinced he was both right and had to speak out.
He said as many as 80 per cent of Catholics agreed with him, including many priests who confirm it privately, even though Pope Benedict earlier this year placed advocating women's ordination alongside paedophilia as a ''grave crime''.
He said he was a loyal Catholic but believed in loyal dissent: the church needs people who speak the truth.
Archbishop Hart said yesterday that Pope John Paul II had stated with his authority that the Catholic Church did not have the power to ordain women priests. ''That's the church's position, and that's my position.''
Asked what would happen next, he said: ''I'm not going to speculate. What might happen is between any individual and church authorities.''
Father Reynolds said he expected to be dismissed. His faculties to act as a priest would probably be revoked and, in the worst-case scenario, he might be excommunicated.
He said he believed he was a loyal Catholic. ''I've always felt the concept of loyal dissent is very valid. This is what the church needs - people who speak the truth as they see it.''
Nevertheless, Father Reynolds had a thought to spare for his archbishop, saying ''I wouldn't be a Catholic if I didn't feel guilty''. He feels guilt for burdening his already overworked brother priests and the archbishop. ''He's got the toughest church job in the country, and I'll be creating another little headache for him. But generally I feel at peace and right about what I am doing.''
Labels: women as clergy