Women are Not Equal

Dante and Beatrice

A post to amuse and infuriate…

Somehow or other a combox critic has assumed that because I have asserted that men and women are different that I do not believe in equality for women. This is because in the past the superiority of men has been assumed and women have been downtrodden.

What troubles me is that the person making this statement gives the appearance of being intelligent and somewhat educated. He continues the assumption that because I am a Catholic and believe that hierarchy and patriarchy are an implicit and immutable part of Catholicism that I must therefore be an oppressor of women.

I should put the record straight and say quite clearly that I do not believe women are equal to men. That would be a great injustice to women as it is clear that women are far superior to men. How can I count the ways in which women are superior? First of all, they are better than men at communication. They not only know how to talk, but they know how to read body language, interpret silent signals and they do so with expert finesse and empathy. Women are naturally more compassionate and caring than men and are more in touch with their feelings. Women generally look and smell much nicer than men. Women care much more for children and family and will more often than men have the right priorities when it comes to the most important people in life. In my experience women are distrustful of technology and decide that it is only a tool and not a toy and therefore pay more attention to real concerns. I usually find that women are more mature than men and are quicker to step up and take responsibility and get a job done–especially if it is a job that does not necessarily have anything to do with making money or being the top dog.

Not only are women superior to men, but it is a total fallacy to pretend that other societies in an earlier time have thought otherwise. The Catholics have always held women in high esteem and treated a woman–the Blessed Virgin Mary–as the greatest and best of all created beings. The noble knights of the Middle Ages, like the poet Dante, have treated women as the paragons of beauty, virtue, goodness and eternal light. Women were the great prize to be sought, the reward for which one would lay down his life, the beauty one would die for and the romance one would kneel to supplicate. Women were thought to be the high and beautiful beings who might just tame the beastly man with patience, virtue, love and goodness.

The idea that a woman is inferior to a man is not an ancient idea, but a modern one. It is only when the man’s interests of making money became the most important sign of his significance and worth that the women started to feel inferior. It should be the man who is understood to be inferior because he has to do inferior things like go out to work in a brutal and filthy place like a coal mine or a slaughterhouse or even worse–the stock exchange. It was the man who was only able to do the brutish work of beasts by sweating to earn a living, going out to war or hunting innocent animals to feed his family. Somehow or other modern man turned the world upside down and began to imagine that it was the man who was most important and not the woman–who up til that time rose above it all by being the queen and mother reigning supreme in the center and powerhouse of civilization which we call the home.

It was the modern world who began to denigrate, oppress and abuse women by expecting them to put on overalls and work in factories. It was the modern world who began to treat women badly by telling them they had to lower themselves to be equal to men. It was the modern world who abused women and insulted them and treated them as men’s sex slaves by telling them to use birth control chemicals to turn off their natural instincts to conceive and bear new life. It was the modern world which abused and tortured women by expecting them to go to the abortionist to have the children they had conceived ripped out of their bodies for the convenience, economy and continued irresponsible sexual pleasure of the men in their lives.

Are women equal to men? I would not expect them to stoop so low.

 

  • http://platytera.blogspot.com/ Christian

    Yes, even Genesis points to the superiority of women:
    1. Adam was made from dirt; Eve from a rib.
    2. In the ascending order of Creation, Eve was created after Adam.
    3. “…a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife…” not vice-versa.

  • Niemand

    So if you believe that women are superior to men, why do you tolerate the head of your church being male? Shouldn’t you have the best for your religion?

    • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

      You don’t seem to understand the upside down aspect of our religion. The first shall be last and the last first. He who would be greatest must be the servant of all. The head of our religion is therefore the lowest in our religion. The very highest of all created beings is not the Pope but the Virgin Mary.

      • Niemand

        So then you pick your worst priest and not your best to be Pope?

        Conversely, if the Virgin Mary is the highest being, shouldn’t she be the greatest servant of all and the person in her image (i.e. a woman) be the highest authority in the church?

        • Christian

          I think you missed a word- she’s the highest created being. The Triune God is the greatest being, and in His incarnation as Christ he made Himself least that we may now exalt Him as greatest. He is an uncreated being, which is a point that the Church clarified in response to the Arian heresy that Christ was the highest created being but not, in fact, God. Hence, we have lines in the Nicene Creed that say things like “begotten, not made, of one being with the father”. The “of one being with” bit may have changed to “consubstantial to” in the recent Roman Missal- I’m a recent convert, and my Anglican roots may be showing through. Feel free to correct me, Fr. L! :-)

          • Niemand

            Christian, that’s an extremely interesting world view and I thank you for explaining it, but it sounds to me like it’s a return to an implicit statement of male superiority, i.e. that the highest man is related to god, the highest woman merely the “highest created being”, i.e. the best person?

          • Theodore Seeber

            Except God isn’t a Man. He became a man once to gain empathy with us, much as some metrosexuals cross dress once in a while to learn “what it feels like to be a woman in society”.

          • enness

            Theodore: or was it for us to be able to relate better to Him?

        • savvy

          The Paradox is that the male priest plays a feminine role. Christ’s death brings us new life. Women bring forth new life naturally. Men do not. With a male priest there is no confusion about whether new life comes from Christ. With the woman. it gets confusing.

    • Christi S.

      The Pope is the servant of servants in the church. As one priest had mentioned, Jesus used a donkey to fulfill his mission while in Jerusalem, so it isn’t much different today.. with all due respect Fr. and with great humility I say that :)

      I am a middle-aged “professional” woman (with my vocation as a mother first), and I am by no way offended that the Pope or any other clergyman is a male.

      And yes Fr. I have to agree. I thought I was “liberated”, but found myself a fool. After having my children, I found other women enjoying them while I dropped them off at daycare while I went to work and missed some precious moments while they were young.

    • La Gallina

      Should my dad be my mom? No, my mother made a much better mother than my dad would have. My dad was an excellent father, however. Men and women have different roles and talents.

    • Theodore Seeber

      Because the head of OUR church is the Vicar of Christ, the Servant of Servants- and thus the lowest of the low. Pope Francis even sees fit to act like it!

    • savvy

      I do not believe women are superior to men or vice versa. I do see the priesthood as a sacrificial office and hence realize that only a man can represent Christ as priest.

  • Birthday girl

    Thank you, Father. I don’t think women are superior; though I would grant their typical sins are less physically impactful. But we’re not chopped liver, either.

    ” It was the modern world who abused women and insulted them and treated them as men’s sex slaves by telling them to use birth control chemicals to turn off their natural instincts to conceive and bear new life. ”

    Yes, I was reading about the development of The Pill. In the early years, they were trying to develop a male pill as well as the one we know and love today. In early testing, three male pill recipients experienced shrinkage of the testicles; the entire project was scrapped. In early testing of the female pill, two recipients died; the project soldiered on. I think that demonstrates your point quite well.

    Disclaimer: I am a middle-aged mother of teens and lifetime caregiver to a handicapped husband. In my 20′s and early 30′s, I was an aspiring 80′s feminist career woman. My education is in the STEM area. My heart is at home. With great longing, I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and life of the world to come.

    • Paul Rodden

      Spoken like a true woman: a place of calm within the storm. :)

    • Recusant

      Those who whinge and pule at the Church do so as they have a particular set of priorities.
      1.) Individual autonomy is the highest order of good.
      2.) Temporal power is the greatest means to secure #1.
      3.) Temporal power resides solely in title and privilege.
      4.) Influence and “soft power” are only means to acquire #3.
      5.) Any barrier to #3, or even the hint of such, especially if that barrier is to me, is bigotry.
      6.) Even if I neither desire nor have competence for a given form of #3, I aught to have it.
      7.) Anyone in a position of power above me, that denies my slightest whim is anathema to me.

      The Church’s priorities are much different.
      1.) Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart and thy whole soul and thy whole mind.
      2.) Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

      Those who espouse the former set of priorities are incapable of the latter.

      • Imperious Dakar

        You make a lot of assumptions based on no apparent evidence Recusant.

        People disagree or even actively dislike the Catholic Church (or other religious groups) for all sorts of reasons.

        • Recusant

          And yet I don’t hear any.

          • Imperious Dakar

            Sorry, I just noticed your post Recusant.

            Personally I dislike how the Catholic Church has traditionally tried to dominate the political process in any country where Catholics are the majority (such as Spain, Italy, Argentina, etc.).

        • Recusant

          It is certainly true that there are many feuds based upon many reasons with the Church. Some political, some theological, some historical, some emotional, and quite frankly, some are quite understandable.

          However, this particular scenario concerns only a narrow subset of people who either:
          A.) Aren’t Catholic, don’t intend to be Catholic, and may not even really believe in God at all. This does not stop them as they are so filled with vain presumption so as to tell Catholics what to believe and how to behave as we are obviously too manifestly stupid to think for ourselves.
          B.) Or, are baptized Catholic, yet have “more important” priorities than attaining heaven, that is to say idols to worship. Of all these, when focusing on the womyn’s (sic) ordination topic, I find that the vast majority lie in two camps, the first are mentioned above, and the second just want to be popular with the first. As the latter generally only parrot and affirm the former, I decided to focus on them.

          I am happy to be corrected, though I find yours is an uphill battle. One needs only open up “the Tablet” or the “National Catholic Reporter” to see that the language of those who militate against the male priesthood is based upon the desire for positional power.

          To be quite honest, if you are too good to be Catholic, there’s nobody forcing you to stay. If you aren’t Catholic, why are you bothering us in the first place?

        • Ted Seeber

          He does have a point as far as Americans are concerned though. The only real question in the value system of an American who hates Catholicism is whether they put a higher value on sexual freedom or a higher value on fiscal freedom. Once you pin one of those down, it is always about individualism in the end- either material or sexual, but always “I don’t want somebody else telling me what to do about X”.

        • David

          Sorry Imperious…you’ve got it backwards. The evidence supports Recusant.

  • Psy

    “He continues the assumption that because I am a Catholic and believe that hierarchy and patriarchy are an implicit and immutable part of Catholicism that I must therefore be an oppressor of women.”

    In the US Churches and private clubs are allowed to discriminate for any reason or no reason at all. I don’t see a problem with a car club not allowing you to display your motor cycle at their car show but I do have issues on discriminating against PEOPLE based on their physical attributives, race, gender, ect.

    • Christian

      I’m not sure that I really know what you’re getting at with this. The Church discriminates against women by “not letting them be priests” in the same way that it discriminates against me (a twenty-year-old guy) by not letting me be a mother. The simple fact is that the priesthood was designated, by God, as a sacramental institution through which men may serve the Church. The idea of “women priests” is exactly as sensible as “sexually male mothers”.

      This doesn’t mean that God or the Church hate women or want them to be treated wrongly or don’t want them to serve important and valuable roles in the Church. It simply means that those responsibilities which are specific to priests (administering the sacraments) can only be carried out by those who are sexually male and who are rightly ordained to the priesthood.

      The reason that this all is so controversial, of course, is because we live in a culture which makes a pastime of proclaiming things to be “rights”- from abortion to free birth control through an employer, and so on- and getting *very upset* if they’re not given to us. The role of the Church, contrary to many apparent expectations, is not to give us whatever we want. Rather, it’s to give us what is good for us to have. Women have the right to dignity, honor, respect, and fulfilling participation in the communal and sacramental life of the Church. The priesthood, however, is not a “right”.

      • Psy

        “I’m not sure that I really know what you’re getting at with this.”

        I simply acknowledged it part of your religious freedom under the Constitution, just like white supremest have the right to exclude non-whites from their not for profit origination. I think you will find growing opposition within the church over the coming year in opposition to your absolutist views. But since church attendance in the US and Europe is in decline it may not be an issue at all.

        • AnneG

          Psy, do you know what “garbage on the lawn” is? It’s the same stuff that gets stuck on your shoe when you walk in my back garden where my dogs have been. And that’s what you are throwing. White supremacists? They would probably get along great with you and your Atheist Supremacists. Blessings on you anyway.

        • gerg

          Attendance at Catholic churches is not in decline.
          Per CARA, Weekly attendance is: 2000, 22%, 2005 23% 2012 24%
          http://cara.georgetown.edu/CARAServices/requestedchurchstats.html
          However for the churches that ordain women, attendance is collapsing

          Also, one of the things that confuses the media on this point is the declining church attendance for innner city churches. I suppose most of the media lives in cities, and they go to their nearest church and see church attendance declining.
          However, they are also closing schools, etc. The problem is that cities are losing population, and people are moving out to the suburbs. Go to the suburbs, and you will general see churches full up on sunday.

        • savvy

          Psy,

          The ones opposing have political arguments and cannot win this debate with informed people. I wonder why they even want a priest to begin with, if they cannot figure what it’s about.

      • enness

        The priesthood isn’t even a right for all men, but only those who are called.
        It’s no more unfair than men being unable to have babies.

  • http://lykex.livejournal.com LykeX

    I’m sure you think your words exhibit praise of women. I don’t think they do. I think your post exhibits a deep alienation from women, coupled with some highly disturbing essentialist notions and a hearty slice of historical revisionism. Quite frankly, I find it offensive.

    To make it clear what I mean:
    You keep talking about women as if they’re some alien species. They have this or that quality, they are so and so. It resembles an anthropological study of a strange tribe, rather than a description of everyday people all around us.

    The essentialism comes through in almost every sentence. You’re constantly talking about how women are this or that and have thus and such “natural instincts”. Not only is this a gross generalization, but it sets up a problematic relationship with any women who does not have these qualities.
    How would you respond to a woman who doesn’t want to have children? Would you consider her unnatural? And if not, then to what degree is the “instinct to conceive and bear life” really natural for women?

    Finally, the entire last paragraph is full of statements so far from the truth that it’s only with the most extreme charity that I refrain from calling you an outright liar. Your relationship with actual history must be tenuous indeed, to allow you to write such nonsense.
    To just pick out one example, my mother has repeatedly told me about what a relief it was for her to get access to reliable and safe birth control. She was certainly not told by anyone to use the pill, she grasped for it as soon as it was available. So did many women, not in order to squelch any natural instinct, but to gain control over their own bodies.
    And I’m not even going to dignify your outrageous mischaracterization of abortion with any more than a dismissive “what have you been smoking?”

    I hope this is simply a result of you not having thought very much about these subjects. I hope that you will reconsider and wise up. I hope you will understand that this post is not flattering of women.
    It’s insulting, disturbing and deeply problematic, to the point where I could easily write another page or two on the flaws of this short piece.

    • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

      I wrote the piece to amuse and infuriate and stand conventional ideas on their head. It looks like I have succeeded.

      • mythbri

        Actually, all you did was reinforce conventional ideas. Looks like you failed.

      • http://lykex.livejournal.com LykeX

        Stand conventional ideas on their head? If that was your goal, you’ve failed miserably.

        Putting women on a pedestal, treating them as aliens, using essentialism to control them, distorting the past to fit your agenda: None of these things are new and revolutionary. This is business as usual. The ideas you lay out here are not only traditional, it’s like I’m reading an opinion piece from the 1950s.

        You’ve reinforced ideas about gender essentialism that are not only not new, the exact qualities you’ve picked; in touch with their feelings, caring for children, desire to reproduce; these are ideas that go back generations and are still widely held.

        And you defend your blatant distortions of history by saying you’re trying to “amuse and infuriate”? Well, congratulations, I suppose: Having someone manipulate facts and then act smug when it’s pointed out does infuriate me.

        Why you’d consider that a success, I have no idea.

        • Theodore Seeber

          More misandry from the clueless left. I suppose you just can’t wait for human cloning so you can execute all those “evil males”.

          • http://lykex.livejournal.com LykeX

            I’m objecting to an article that claims that women are inherently superior to men, and I’M misandrist?

        • Paul H

          What do you mean by the term “gender essentialism”?

          • http://lykex.livejournal.com LykeX

            Quick rundown:
            Gender essentialism is a point of view that sees the genders as eternally separate, fitting into each their own little box. It’s a position that ignores the fact that there’s immense variation within each gender and that often the two overlap so much that calling a particular quality “masculine” or “feminine” is simply ridiculous.
            Gender essentialism is when you think the genders are essentially different, rather than being one quality in a sea of humanity.

            Obviously, you could go into much more detail, but that’s the gist of it. I think that the father’s post exhibits such opinions and I think they’re both in conflict with reality and potentially damaging to society and individuals.

        • Dan

          Oh dear, perhaps expanding your sense of humor might assuage your rather amusing ire. Or read a bit more carefully. Or notice some of the blatant use of hyperbole.

          On another note, women and men do in fact have essentially distinct biological roles. They also have a biological and psychological tendency towards different attitudes and behaviors, which tends to set them apart for the better and worse. These generalities are secondary accidents to the essence of a person’s humanity or personhood (that is, their essence as a rational being). The personhood and the equality in dignity of each human is essential and is what the Church recognizes; so no, we do not condone chauvinism (consider the fact that the highest created being can be said to be Mary, and before you posit God as a male creator placing men above women, please remember that such address is used in a generally analogical manner). However, there are intrinsic things in people that do in fact differentiate them.

      • Niemand

        Not at all. Actually, your ideas are highly conventional. The “women are better than men and must be protected from the evil world” claim has been put forth by various sexists since at least the Medieval era. It is currently popular in certain sects of Islam as well as in a number of Christian sects.

        • savvy

          A lot of radical feminists think women need to be protected from evil men too.

        • savvy

          Women do not need to be protected. The sacrificial priesthood needs to be protected from those pushing politics on the sacraments.

        • savvy

          The difference is we are not talking about the John Wayne masculine type here, but the one who offers sacrifice on behalf of the people.

      • Renaissance Bookworm

        “I wrote the piece to amuse and infuriate and stand conventional ideas on their head. It looks like I have succeeded.” — Best comment/retort on the board! Fr. Dwight for the win :)

    • Theodore Seeber

      Hate to say it, but to a real man, women *are* an alien species- right down to different brain structures and different levels of typical upper body strength.

      I see your entire post as an exercise in misandry and an attempt to deny men the ability to be men.

    • Catalina

      LykeX:
      Have you ever considered what were the reasons your mother and those other women you mentioned were desperate to get their hands on that contraception? You stated they wanted control over their bodies. That implies your mother’s body was “out of control” and needed some “regulating”. This is where your view of women’s bodies is flawed. Are you saying that a woman’s body is “irregular”, “sick”, “infirm” or “out of control” when fertile? Is fertility a defect? Is fertility a disease? Is fertility an illness? What is the function of the reproductive system in the body? If the reproductive system actually reproduces, is this a malfunction or the healthy outcome of what it’s function is? Medicines are typically administered when something in the body is malfunctioning, are they not? Why did your mother fear her own body to the point she grasped at an artificial synthetic horomone that would radically alter it’s healthy inner workings? What caused her and thousands of other women to fear their own bodies while simultaneously holding the belief they are “proud” to be women? There are plenty of reasons but typically these are the most commong: 1. One fears life so naturally one tries to “control” and/or “limit” it. 2. One claims to be in love and making “love” but fears the product of that “love”. Ironic, isn’t it? 3. One does not trust the man one is sharing the bed with to unconditionally share in the responsability and privilage of having a family. 4. One fears a child/children will hinder one’s ability to be successful, free, or happy in life. The key word here is fear. Your mother and countless others are AFRAID. The Catholic Church is not AFRAID of life or a female’s body and fertility. The Catholic Church hails the natural workings of a female’s body and also hails those women who’s vocations lead them away from marriage and therefore never bear children in the physical sense but who bear “spiritual” children or those women who have neither live out their vocation as single lay women nevertheless being completely at peace with their bodies and working the wonders of God as celibate women. Peace be with you!

    • enness

      LykeX, I’m not sure you need another person to tell you how spectacularly you have both missed and illustrated the point, but there it is.
      What I do want to suggest is that you consider taking some sort of course in marketing psychology and find out just how easy it is to sell people things they never knew they needed and make them believe it was their idea in the first place.

  • Amy H.

    Please forgive me, Father, but why must one sex be considered superior over another?! Does not St. Paul teach us that all are equal in the sight of God? In God’s eyes there is no male or female, slave or free, Jew or Greek. Because women are traditionally gifted in certain areas and men are traditionally gifted in others doesn’t make one superior over another, just *different*. And those differences can piece together nicely to form a solid bond of service to The Lord, if we could just stop looking at these qualities unique to each sex through minds of flesh and put on the mind of Christ.

    Why should it matter if a woman cannot be Pope in the Church? If Jesus wished the leaders of His Church here on earth to include women, He certainly could have added women to His inner circle of disciples as an example, but didn’t. Does that make women inferior to men? In no way. Women are honored and respected by Him in numerous ways throughout the Gospels.

    I say we celebrate our different gifts and put them to good use in the Church instead of “duking it out” so to speak over who’s superior. It’s called mutual respect and it won’t occur unless we all stop fighting over whose the most important in the Kingdom of God.

    • Imperious Dakar

      It doesn’t matter that much to me if women can become Catholic priests or not Amy.
      Because I am not a woman, and (perhaps more importantly) not a Catholic.

      But if I WAS A CATHOLIC, and took all of its claims about being THE moral authority at face value, it would matter to me a great deal. Especially if I was a Catholic woman.

      Think about it…

      Only a small percentage of what is considered official Catholic doctrine was written by women, and no women have participated in deciding what is and is not official doctrine. Because all the Bishops (including the Pope himself) are male.

      Women don’t even any role in deciding who gets elected Pope.

      In other words, under Catholicism men get to decide all the (official) rules for proper and moral behavior. Without any real influence, input, or feedback from women.

      That is not equality between the sexes.

      • Dan

        Dakar, since when was reasoning tied to gender? Doctrine is doctrine, and much like 1 + 1 = 2 in all integer bases three and greater, Christological doctrines, Marian doctrines, Trinitarian doctrines and the like are dependent not on who wrote them, but the reasoning behind them. Much like several of the ‘natural rights’ we humans have as delineated in the Constitution, these things are ‘discovered or revealed’ not simply dictated.

        • Imperious Dakar

          Dan, are you actually denying that the people involved has some effect on how Church doctrine is written or interpreted?

          • savvy

            Yes. There are more female saints than male saints. Anybody can develop a charism. but only God can bring it to life. There are many men and women who have brought their vision to life, and there are others who have not. to to be. You can certainly disagree with this, but people with more experience in developing charisms would disagree with you.

            As, my spiritual director told me, “If God wants you be somewhere, nothing, on earth will keep you away, and if God does not want you to be somewhere, until on earth will get you in.”

      • Theodore Seeber

        Roughly 39% is a small percentage to you?

      • savvy

        As a Catholic woman, I have spent years studying this issue. I can gladly that accept that Jesus is the saviour and not me. I do not want to trade Jesus for some androgenous being.

      • savvy

        What do you want a priest for? How one views this issue, usually depends on their response to this question.

      • enness

        Imperious Dakar: If you were Catholic, you would believe that the doctrine ultimately comes from the Author of the Universe. And then you would be suggesting that God needs your input. I hope the problem with that is obvious.

      • savvy

        “In other words, under Catholicism men get to decide all the (official) rules for proper and moral behavior. Without any real influence, input, or feedback from women.”

        This is totally false and ignorant.

  • Julie C.

    LykeX – speak for yourself! You certainly do not represent me or my views.

    Excellent post, Father! One of my favorites! Nice to know that is is ok for women to actually be women. Imagine that!

    • http://lykex.livejournal.com LykeX

      Of course, I’m speaking for myself. Did I ever claim to represent you? If so, let me make it clear: I represent only myself. Some people agree with me, some don’t. I don’t claim to represent any of them.

      Now, in return, maybe you’d like to explain what it means for women to “actually be women”. What does that mean? In what way could a woman not be a woman? The father presented the view that certain traits are natural and inherent to women. Do you agree with that? If so, how do you deal with the many women who do not share those traits? Are they not really women, then?

      You also seem to imply that I (or more generally, people who disagree with the post) are trying to prevent women from being women. Setting aside the uncertainty of what that even means, what are you basing this insinuation on?
      Have I said anything bad about women who choose to have children? Have I implied that they’re unnatural for wanting lots of kids? The father’s post most certainly did imply that women who don’t want to have children are unnatural.

      Do you have anything to say that isn’t a one-liner?

      • savvy

        LykeX,

        Not all women are the same, and not all men are the same. This however does not change the fact that the differences between men and women are a biological fact.

  • Lynda

    Men and women are necessarily different – else they wouldn’t be men and women. They complement each other, each having different and equally necessary roles to play in marriage, motherhood, fatherhood, greater family and society. A woman cannot be a man; a man cannot be a woman. Certain men being poor husbands, fathers or priests is not a reason to look to women to try to mimic such roles.

    • http://remnantofremnant.blogspot.com priest’s wife

      I agree Lynda

    • Psy

      ” ,,, each having different and equally necessary roles to play in marriage, motherhood, fatherhood, greater family and society. ”

      Are you saying you wouldn’t approve of a woman having a carrier while the man stayed home raising the children?

      • James H

        “Are you saying you wouldn’t approve of a woman having a carrier [sic] while the man stayed home raising the children?”

        Having tried that, I can only say to other men, ‘DON’T!’

        A woman is not attracted by a houseboy; a man feels useless if his peers are out changing the world and he’s not. If you do that for an open-ended period of time, your sex life will dwindle into a horror of frustration, and your wife, in spite of all her best intentions, will lose all admiration and respect. People are simply not designed that way, and it won’t change, no matter how much the feminists insist it should.

        • Niemand

          A woman is not attracted by a houseboy; a man feels useless if his peers are out changing the world and he’s not.

          Men are not attracted to a housegirl who is only interested in her MRS degree and a woman may feel frustrated if her peers are out changing the world and she’s not.

          Men may feel deep regret at not having been there when his children are young and missing their “firsts (first steps, first words, etc), not going to their school plays, not being there to advise them and comfort them in rough moments, etc.

          So why not make it possible for men who want to stay home and play with their children to do so and for women who want to have a career and life outside of the home to do so.

          Actually, I’ve found that with a little organization and help from friends, relatives, or trustworthy people whom one hires to help with the children, both are possible. My partner and I both work. But he was there when the baby said his first words, we were both there when he walked for the first time (at a gay pride parade as it happens…everyone else was walking so he did too), we take turns staying home for illness and going to school plays. At the same time, we’ve both published papers that changed the way the world was viewed at least, saved people’s lives, and helped dozens get the education they need. Who would have been better off if I’d stayed home in a “womanly” manner and he’d avoided all housework in a “manly” manner? He would feel less close to the kid, which would hurt both of them, and I’d probably either sink into a deep depression or take up housecleaning as a blood sport to amuse myself.

          The fact is, there aren’t major differences in the way men and women think. Some men like raising kids, as do some women. Some men like going out and trying to change the world as do some women. Why not base your beliefs about people on who they actually are in their minds and souls rather than on their genitalia?

          • Noor

            Well Said, Niemand.

          • Theodore Seeber

            Actually, most men want a woman who is a housewife. A true housewife deserves at least half of her husband’s pay.

          • gerg

            Sorry, but I think this is where you leave reality and begin living in a world of your own making:

            “Men are not attracted to a housegirl who is only interested in her MRS degree and a woman may feel frustrated if her peers are out changing the world and she’s not.”

            It is dumb to claim that all men are this and all women are that. But what some seem to insist on is that women NEVER want to stay home with the kids, and men never want to go to work. For the most part, women want manly men and men want womenly women. For the most part, women are more likely to be fulfilled staying home with the kids.
            This insistence that there is no difference is just weird.

          • savvy

            Niemand,

            This isn’t about gender roles. Motherhood and fatherhood are not just biological. In this case they are also spiritual. In this argument we need to separate the civil from the sacramental. The church does not object to women President’s just women priests. There are reasons for this.

      • Theodore Seeber

        Depends, what is she carrying?

        If that’s the level of discourse coming from the New Atheist side, so full of misandry, no wonder they feel threatened by Christianity.

        • Imperious Dakar

          I wouldn’t want a housewife Seeber, nor would most of the men I know.

          What is your claim that MOST MEN WANT A HOUSEWIFE based on?

          • Ted Seeber

            The idea that heterosexual monogamy is the world’s oldest and most successful anti-poverty program.

            If you can understand that, you will understand the *real value* a housewife brings- and why it is the most powerful vocation in the world, and should be treated as such (complete with recompense).

      • savvy

        Psy,

        I would see nothing wrong, since motherhood and fatherhood are not just biological. The church does not object to women Presidents or any civil position, but women as priests. The sacraments can only be understood in their context.

    • Noor

      Lynda, Why do you assume that people who deviate from a set of behaviors aren’t naturally inclined to do so? and are you aware that gender binarism is not universal?

      • savvy

        Neuroscientists would disagree with you. Men and women are not the same.

    • David Zelenka

      I agree also, Lynda.

      Generally speaking, Fr. L. is correct also about some of the general traits that women excel in.

      I’ll add that as fallen men and women we compliment each other for our particular sanctification and to glorify God. This is why marriage is a sacrament in the Catholic Church. The particular traits that help us grow in Christ are gifted to us in marriage so we come to know truly how dependent on God we truly are. And this doesn’t come easily, that’s for sure.

      Likewise, men are given leadership roles by God, not because we are any good at leadership, but because it forces grace upon us when we fail and seek forgiveness for our failures. Women are given their particular general roles for similar reasons: sanctification and Love of God. It’s a way of the cross, not the way of glory.

      I’ll also note that both men and women have a problem these days coveting independent self-aspirations. It’s a disease of Power. I tell others, these days, that I have no aspirations, but that’s not entirely true. I don’t have worldly aspirations anymore. But I do aspire to love Jesus. I aspire to be a good husband. I aspire to be a good dad. I aspire to be a good friend.

      Men and women alike need to aspire to simple earthy, humble truths. When we do that, our roles as men and women will sort themselves out just fine. For it is the meek who will inherit the earth, certainly not the lofty. I am so pleased that our new poor Pope Francis speaks on this most important step forward.

      • Psy

        I got nothing out of that other than a long winded “I agree”.
        When I saw the big response I’d hoped you were going to explain these “roles”.

        • AnneG

          Complementarity, leadership, power and humility. That’s what he covered.

        • David Zelenka

          It’s always important to rejoice when we get a response that contains an attack, for we know this is what happens to those who truly follow Jesus:

          “The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name.” Acts 5:41

  • Noor

    Your description of women superiority is completely similar to the middle eastern Muslim one and everyone knows exactly how superior women are in the Middle East.I think the consequences of this way of thinking is lost to people who live in western societies.Treating women as paragons of beauty and virtue is a notion that limits their economical and social power,

    • Alexander Anderson

      “that limits their economical and social power,” Father L., in my opinion, lacked a bit of tact in his post, but this is exactly the mentality that he was trying to counter: the idea that someone’s worth is determined by their economic and social power. The idea pre-dates modernity, but it certainly resurfaced with people like Machievelli and Francis Bacon and has infected the modern world. The Medievals had a different mentality– the poorest beggar had a bit of an aura of holiness about him, and a man named Francis who gave his whole fortune away, begged for his living, and held no office (remember, he was never ordained) was the most powerful man in Europe– even though that had nothing to do with his goals. The past is truly a different country. Anyway, let us consider Angela Merkel. She is the Chancellor of Germany, she has published academic papers in chemistry, all around a smart and gifted person who has used her gifts to become possibly the most powerful woman in the world. But for the Christian, her worth has nothing to do with that worldly power. In fact, in the heavenly kingdom she will likely be out ranked by many housemaids, beggars, factory workers, children martyrs, etc. who are neither as smart or as talented or as powerful in a worldly sense as she is. Likewise, men like President Obama, Pope Francis and any other powerful man’s worth has nothing to do with the power they wield or the strings that they pull. Everyone will be outranked by an illiterate peasant girl from 1st century Judea, in fact. Father L isn’t talking about policy, he’s trying to combat a mentality.

      • Noor

        I understand what you are saying, but power is not only gained by money.I’m not sure about beggars but Francis though not a wealthy man was socially very powerful.He founded Franciscan Order and had many followers.I am not speaking about afterlife. I can’t ask people to live miserably in this life and hope for a better life after they died.It’s in my opinion a way of shrugging of our social responsibilities.

        • savvy

          There are many women who founded religious orders too. They gave other women the change to excel both economically and socially. This did not make them any less feminine. There are more women saints than male saints.

  • Shelby

    Fr.,
    It’s so very nice to read a piece like that every once in a while from someone who is very knowledgeable of both men and women from experience in the confessional and from spiritual counseling…Thank you so much! In a world where I myself and other women around me are constantly told to “do everything (and sometimes more than everything) a man can do”, it’s quite refreshing to read a post about how (despite what the media says) men and women are different, and are intended to be so. Ah, reason. What a lovely thing.

  • http://remnantofremnant.blogspot.com priest’s wife

    Fr L- maybe you could expand this idea with a few tips for men who are under siege from women who want the priesthood. My husband has to ‘put up’ with a lot of nonsense from nuns, catholic lay women and even non-Christian laywomen who hate him because he had the possibility of the priesthood. For professional reasons (his big boss is Episcopalian)- he has to stay virtually silent

    • David Zelenka

      Mind if I chime in?
      There are a number of valid arguments. For one, I believe it has to do with what sin carries men and women away more easily. Men get tangled in lust and have a hard time escaping. Women get tangled in power and have a difficult time escaping. This is why gossip is such a big issue with women and less so with men. When you talk about someone you place yourself higher than that person. Women end up coveting power simply because of the physical difference between men and women, so they tend to fall prey to it. Men also covet power, but they tend to covet the power over the flesh more so.

      And there is also the simple fact that it is the women that have the babies and must nurse babies. There are philosophies, Eco-feminism comes to mind, that want to reverse this natural fact. Eco-feminists (in the extreme form), would have children raised by the state, so women would not be tied down to those roles that society and families depend on.

      Lastly, the root structure to all of humanity is the family relationship. We see that in the trinity also. In its perfect form, all structure in society and culture mimics this organizational truth. Father, Spirit, Son -> father, mother, child. The father is the leader. The mother is the spirit of the family. And the child is the new life.

      Any other form, just doesn’t hold water and inevitably collapses.

      • Psy

        “Men get tangled in lust and have a hard time escaping. Women get tangled in power and have a difficult time escaping. This is why gossip is such a big issue with women and less so with men.”

        So that’s it, a generalizing and apply it to everybody within the Church?

        • Theodore Seeber

          I think the real problem you have isn’t even the church. It is refusing to believe the general cases of being human.

          You don’t have a problem with religion- you have a problem with being homo sapiens.

    • Imperious Dakar

      I honestly think (like Father Longenecker) that Catholicism is too patriarchal by nature to ever accept female priests.

      But unlike him, I don’t think that that is necessarily anything to be proud of.

      • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

        Patriarchy-like any social system–works if the individuals are virtuous. If they are not it fails.

        • Imperious Dakar

          So you admit a matriarchy would work if the individuals were virtuous then Father?

          • Theodore Seeber

            And fails when the women aren’t virtuous.

            Trouble is, the Church isn’t a patriarchy. It just looks that way.

          • Imperious Dakar

            How is the Catholic Church NOT a patriarchy?
            Its led by priests, and only men can be priests.

            That’s practically a textbook definition of a patriarchy.

          • savvy

            What do you mean by led?

          • Ted Seeber

            Priests are not leaders- they are servants, is what you are missing.

        • Paul Rodden

          I think your comment is one of the most important factors that so many people do not consider in these sorts of discussions.
          Many ideas, if interpreted through the lens of any character-based ethic, are likely to work and be socially-enhancing, whilst the same ideas, when interpreted through the lenses of Consequentialism or Utilitarianism, will result in social disintegration.
          I’d argue this was one of the problems with ‘Thatcherism’.

  • Michael

    I’m not sure if I was the combo box critic but the questions I ask was that biology aside how are men and women different in secular society. Thank you for answering it. You maintain that women in fat are superior to men and have had to degrade themselves by getting down and dirty work in a man’s world. I assume though that despite the halcyon dares of yore when women “who up til that time rose above it all by being the queen and mother reigning supreme in the center and powerhouse of civilization which we call the home” But I assume, and I truly do, that restoring a woman’s rightful place would not involve removing their right to vote, removing their right to public office, removing their right to choose any secular profession they choose.

    And your comment that “What troubles me is that the person making this statement gives the appearance of being intelligent and somewhat educated.” might cause me to stop to such a level and make a back hand comment about “being a Catholic priest and he didn’t give any indication of being an oppressor of woman”. But I never said that and never would say or imply it. Because like you, I have come to realize that that women can put us men to shame in many of their actions I maintain vocally their civil equality and will permit no abrogation of their right to conduct their lives just like any man.

    For just like it was often said that for women to get credit have to do their jobs twice as well as men, the same is said for atheists to gain acceptance in a society that is predominately religious.

    • Imperious Dakar

      I am guessing (although not certain) that I was the ‘combox critic’ Michael.

      • Michael

        I’m not sure Imperious – I asked him twice what non biological difference there were between men and women. It could have been either, neither or both. Maybe will see out questions in the next “Atheist Ed”

    • flyingvic

      “You maintain that women in fat are superior to men . . .” OK, I accept that it’s a typo; but do be aware that you’re walking on thin ice here . . .

      • Ted Seeber

        Why is admitting that women evolved to have a superior body fat ratio to men walking on thin ice?

        • flyingvic

          Try saying it to the women in your life and see what happens . . .

  • machigai

    Are you planning on mentioning your dishonesty when next you confess?

    • Michael

      Who is dishonest and about what?

  • Imperious Dakar

    “Not only are women superior to men, but it is a total fallacy to pretend that other societies in an earlier time have thought otherwise.”

    This statement by the author is simply and utterly untrue.

    During the Medieval era Catholic theologians justified banning women from the priesthood based on the premise that women were morally, spiritually, and intellectually inferior. Many modern day Catholics say that that was just due to personal failings and the prejudices of the day. But the fact that women were (widely) regarded as inferior is something that even Pope John Paul II admitted (link to source: http://www.focusequip.org/discover/apologetics/church-history/does-the-catholic-church-hate-women.html).

    Moreover, Islam considers women inferior and always has. That’s why so many male Muslims are all too ready to kill female family members who have deviated from societal norms and expectations in any way (link to source: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2013/03/honor-killing-gaza.html).

    The preference for boys over girls goes all the way back to the womb in many societies. Which is why countries like China and India are in the process of aborting most of their baby girls (link to source: http://www.economist.com/node/15606229).

    • Dan

      … Perhaps you missed the humor…
      We know such bias has existed before, one of the points (I believe) is that for all our ‘progress’ in one direction, we’ve given way to a new chauvanism or a new vanity in another.

    • savvy

      Nobody said, opinions held by others were dogma. Dogma is fixed, doctrine develops, discipline changes.

  • Paul Rodden

    Of course Father, you know can’t win. That holiday did you good:)
    The feminist (who managed to even start reading your piece without breaking out into apoplexy) would say your piece is a perfect example of one of the biggest no-nos: the chauvinistic, ‘double-bluff’…

  • Nathan

    Wow, such acrimony for simply pointing out, in a humorous way, what my 2 year old knows – boys and girls are different. Men can’t be women, and therefore shouldn’t act like women, and women can’t be men. The fact that this is even controversial shows the intellectual depths our society has plunged into. Particularly shocking is the argument that “gender essentialism has led to sexism” as if an idea is true or false based off its effects on society.

    • Imperious Dakar

      By internet standards, this debate has been fairly polite Nathan.

      I honestly wasn’t sure whether Father Longenecker meant this post seriously or not.

      The problem is, many people actually DO think women are inferior (misogyny seems to be the historical norm). While others claim to believe in equality of the sexes, but say that men deserve all the power and privileges, while women should be under male dominion for ‘their own good.’

      • Ted Seeber

        The problem isn’t misogyny outright- it is that the standard response to misogyny has become misandry instead of correcting the error.

        • Imperious Dakar

          Actually Seeber, the standard response to misogyny has generally been passive acceptance throughout history.
          Patriarchy was virtually never challenged (certainly not in the West) until the modern era.

      • savvy

        The priesthood is based on service and sacrifice, not power. Anybody interested in power, men or women should find something else to do.

        Let me ask you a question. What do you want a priest for?

      • savvy

        Servant-leadership is not dominance. It’s does seem like you are confused about why the priesthood is reserved for men only.

    • Caravelle

      Your 2-year old is lucky he or she isn’t trans. Or at least I dearly hope he or she isn’t.

      • enness

        That isn’t luck, it’s the norm.

  • Paul Rodden

    It seems to me that no matter how many counterexamples one presents to a feminist, the response is always that those women have bought into the ‘male patriarchal narrative’ and so are not true women so have let the side down… (q.v., ‘No True Scotsman’ fallacy.)

    Of course, it’s always feminists who bring up how dysfunctional women are, by necessity, as their characterisation of men relies upon it, or else they would have no argument.

  • Darren Szwajkowski

    @Noor: Economic and social power. So, that’s what it boils down to. If it gives us social or economic power then that is the only good. That is the ideaology of the culture of death. If the child in the womb has down’s syndrome, kill him/her as they will not provide social or economic power, they will just be a burden to society.
    @LykeX: The modern world has rewritten history, the Catholic Church has not, I would like to know “Why your mother decided to take the pill”? That is the deeper question. It has nothing to do about freedom. Freedom does not require you to buy anything. Btw, it is a Class 1 carcinogen. (All the men who can’t control their libido thank you women for putting a cancer causing agent into your body so they can use you for their own selfess pleasure.) You cite very minor occurrences in history to be what is generally accepted at truth. Just like when the pill was crammed down women’s throats not literally but metaphorically. Women bought into the lie. A few women who got raped were made to be the spokeswomen. A sad tradegy for one women turned into a sad tragedy for womenkind. And men have enjoying it since. If you have a boyfriend, stop giving him sex, see how angry, how violent he becomes. That’ll show you the truth of what the pill has caused.
    The world cries for Organic Food yet the same world cries for a pill that destroys our ecosystem. Where is the logic behind that. The Church, in her wisdom, reserved sex for marriage. And she it right. The sexual revolution has been sowing it’s ugly and fruitless seed. A withering tree. A slave to sin particularly lust.
    There is a piece on newoxfordreview.org: http://www.newoxfordreview.org/article.jsp?did=0196-gawronski
    that talks why Christ was a man. It was a revealing article that showed that the male was inferior to the female. Christ had to show that the male could be better than what he was. The female (will I get into trouble by making a general statement) inherently knows how to be better.
    It seems to be that in today’s society that the male needs to elevated himself to be better and to treat women as they were treated, with high esteem, a treasure amongst treasures, a diamond in the rough, a pearl of great value. It will only be done when men quit using women. Men need to show romance, show self-control, show masterty of himself in order to win over the grand jewel of the woman in having here as his wife. And waiting for sex, learning natural family planning so the woman does not feel used, will be the stepping stone.
    I love reading G.K. Chesterton and here are a few quotes: “Marriage is a dual to the death that no man of honour should decline” and “When Christ at a symbolic moment was establishing His great society, He chose for its corner-stone neither the brilliant Paul nor the mystic John, but a shuffler, a snob a coward — in a word, a man. And upon this rock He has built His Church, and the gates of Hell have not prevailed against it. All the empires and the kingdoms have failed, because of this inherent and continual weakness, that they were founded by strong men and upon strong men. But this one thing, the historic Christian Church, was founded on a weak man, and for that reason it is indestructible. For no chain is stronger than its weakest link.”

    • Niemand

      it is a Class 1 carcinogen.

      True, but deceptive. OCP, especially estrogen containing, have been associated with a mild increase in the risk of breast cancer. They’ve also been associated with a moderate decrease in the risk of uterine and ovarian cancer. There’s also an increased risk of cervical cancer, but that’s incidental: women who use OCP are less likely to use barrier protection and so more likely to become infected with HPV…if they aren’t vaccinated, which all young women–and men–should be soon. Ovarian kills more frequently than breast (though breast more frequently than uterine and cervical is a bit of a toss up and very rare in women who have access to good OB/GYN care) so I’d say that the decision to use OCP or not should be individualized and vilifying the OCP in a blanket manner is unjustified by available evidence.

      • Theodore Seeber

        ” women who use OCP are less likely to use barrier protection and so more likely to become infected with HPV”

        I still wonder what ever happened to teaching “the only safe sex, is no sex”.

        • Caravelle

          @Theodore Seeber :

          I still wonder what ever happened to teaching “the only safe sex, is no sex”.

          It’s alive and well and still being actively promoted in many benighted parts of the US, and it’s continuing to fail spectacularly at reducing rates of teen pregnancy, STD or sexual activity.

          But that’s only a problem if you care about results and people’s well-being more than about ideological purity.

          • enness

            Well for starters, you can’t give a half-assed attempt and then say “Look, this failed.” I would like to see your proof. I suspect you haven’t got much more than snappy comments.

    • Niemand

      It should also be noted that the breast cancer cases in OCP users were less likely to be advanced than those of non-users. This could be for one of two reasons: 1. The tumors associated with OCP are less aggressive and so more likely to be early stage when found or 2. Women taking OCP have better medical care and so have their cancers found earlier. (a href=”http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8656904″>Source.

      In either case, early breast cancer rarely* kills and this should also be taken into account when considering birth control methods. OCPs definitely aren’t for everyone. But they are a fine method for select women and simply stating that they’re a carcinogen and hoping that scares women out of using them is unjustified by the data.

      *Though it should be noted that “rarely” is not “never” and no cancer should be taken lightly. Then again, people die of infection, minor injuries and pregnancy too. There just aren’t many disruptions of bodily integrity that can be considered “safe”.

    • Imperious Dakar

      I read the article you linked to Darren.

      It actually ties in with things I have thought myself before. Specifically the fact that most societies EXPECTED women to be more compassionate and moral than men. Not merely when it came to sex, but when it comes to taking care of children, sacrificing for others, showing compassion in general, etc. etc.

      These ‘feminine’ qualities have often been taken for granted or seen as weaknesses. Few have argued that they make women more good and/or goodly as the author does.

      Yet even in this article traces of the idea that masculinity is more good and goodly than femininity remain. Specifically this quote:

      Only a male can symbolize the Bridegroom, lest the symbolism be homosexual. Must the congregation then be all female? Hardly: But male and female must allow themselves to be receptive to and, yes, passive and thus feminine before the action of God, even as the priest, if he is really to lead His people in prayer, must allow the Spirit of Jesus to flow through him and to His people

      • Theodore Seeber

        And why is he the “Bridegroom” and not the “Bride”?

      • savvy

        The only reason why there is an attack on the sacrificial priesthood is because it’s a lot like giving birth. Hence, it’s the people who attack the function of the priesthood are the ones who think women are weaker, not the other way around.

      • savvy

        I do not see this as indicating that the masculine is more good, but that women must stay the way they are, and men must become spiritually like women. This is why Christ’s sacrifice is unique, in the sense that it brings forth new life, just as a woman labours to give birth to new life.

        It unites both men and women.

    • Noor

      Darren, in absence of economical and social equality (or rather the chance of them ) people in superior positions almost always abuse people in inferior positions.It’s an unconscious process. When i have more chance of getting away with wrongdoings it’s more likely i’ll do just that and i’ll even justify my actions. It’s as simple as that. That’s how for centuries humans enslaved other humans and considered it normal and beneficial to society. As i mentioned before the exact same logic is used in the Middle Eastern countries that leads to terrible abuse of women.

      • savvy

        You are conflating different issues here. The priest plays a sacramental role, which is different from women being entitled to economic or social opportunities.

  • Harry Piper

    I know that a lot of historical literature on the Middle-Ages has been infected with a strain of anti-Catholic bias, and it’s only in the modern era we are coming to appreciate that period for the great achievements it produced, but I think it’s almost as great a mistake to paint the period as some kind of romantic fantasy, filled with gallant knights and virtuous damsels. Medieval Knights were not Errol Flynn’s in armour – they were brutal, violent men living in a brutal, violent world. And I really doubt women had a wonderful time in those days – savage violence was a horrible reality for everyone, and women would suffer far more by virtue of their gender.

    • Theodore Seeber

      Have you ever even bothered to read the code of chivalry, or is your only experience with it Errol Flynn?

      • Harry Piper

        There is no Code of Chivalry – it was a general principal or idea propagated to restrain and tame the worst instincts of fighting-men in that era, with varying degrees of success. And I would challenge anyone who thinks that the above description of medieval life is at all accurate to actually go out and read up on the period – Game of Thrones was based on the Wars of the Roses for a reason.

  • Harry Piper

    Also, I think we do the Faith a great disservice if we blithely overlook or glibly dismiss the very real evils apparent in the history of the Church.

    • Theodore Seeber

      I see worse evils in an America that refuses to even *inspect* abortion clinics. Kermit Gosnell killed more born human beings than Torquemunda.

      • Harry Piper

        Did I say that our era was better? I did not. What is indisputable is that pretending that the Church was not occasionally involved with evil things is obfuscation at best and deceit at worst – it hurts our witness and invites ridicule on the Church. We must deal with the Church’s sins honestly and each new evil as it comes – not engage in a childish game of Lets-compare-the-Bodycounts.

        • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

          “The Church” doesn’t sin and “the Church” is not involved in evil. Individual Catholics sin and are involved in evil.

          • Harry Piper

            Right, but in history we see laymen, priests, bishops and Popes complicit in various horrible deeds and horrors. It is theologically correct to say that the Church as the Mystical Body of Christ does not sin – it would be impossible for her to do so. But it’s a bit too academic when looking on the sins of the institution and say, “No, no, it’s only individuals who did bad things.” We can talk of the Church as Mystical Body of Christ and the Church as day-to-day institution comprised of sinful human beings, and in the latter, rather more basic, sense the Church was indeed involved in sin.

          • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

            Its simply a matter of grammar–not theology: Catholics do bad things. The Catholic Church doesn’t do bad things. The same would apply to any group. America doesn’t do bad things. Americans do.

          • Imperious Dakar

            Assuming that you believe The Church can take credit for the work of individual Catholics Father, that doesn’t seem intellectually honest.

            The Catholic Church is a human organization composed of individuals who sometimes do questionable (or outright evil) things as a group.

            For instance, if the Pope committed murder, and the other bishops helped him cover it up, how could people say that The Church wasn’t doing evil?

          • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

            Institutions don’t do things. People do.

          • Michael

            And sometimes we are all guilty of hiding behind the institutions we are members of. f we are a member of a institution that is doing wrong, be it secular or religious, it is a moral imparitive that we speak up against it and if the institution, once again secular or religious, refuses to change, we must distance ourselves from it, independent of the cost.

          • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

            you mis spelled ‘imperative’

  • Imperious Dakar

    I meant to write ‘good and godly’ not ‘good and goodly.’

    I guess that’s what I get for trying to cook, talk to someone, and write on my computer all at the same time.

  • http://germanegyptian.blogspot.com/ The Egyptian

    go to the abortionist to have the children they had conceived ripped out of their bodies for the convenience, economy and continued irresponsible sexual pleasure
    LYKEX said
    And I’m not even going to dignify your outrageous mischaracterization of abortion with any more than a dismissive “what have you been smoking?”

    Repeat after me LYKEX , Kermit Gosnell, again Kermit Gosnell, pure hell on earth, if born alive KILL them, it is so convenient, kind and merciful to the mother and child. The ugly face of abortion has raised it’s ugly head and the progressives are in a panic

  • Amy H.

    As a Catholic (revert) and a woman, I’m curious as to what Saint Catherine of Siena, Saint Teresa of Avila, Saint Therese of Lisieux, and Saint Hildegard of Bingen–all women Doctors of the Church, and in some cases, papal advisors–would have to say about Father’s article and this whole thread of responses. I’m wondering if they would have advised a more Kingdom-building use of our time…

  • Amanda

    Father, with all due respect. I think we need some history lessons around here. Women were not always in the home. Contrary to those popular ideas, only affluent women could afford to be at home. Poor women did not have that choice. Do you think mom sat in the house while dad put on overalls and worked on the farm? Hardly. Mom was out working those fields and caring for the animals, too. She might not have gone into the mine shafts, but she wasn’t a SAHM either.

    That being said, I WISH the ideal was true and I could take advantage of it too.

    • http://germanegyptian.blogspot.com/ The Egyptian

      as a 3th generation farmer, Mom milked the cows and did a lot, she had a play pen in the milking parlor, with her children by her side, we helped in the garden, washed dishes and fed the calves from about the age of 4 onward, I was the oldest, at milking I helped care for and watch the younger kids, (six of us). yeah we learned to work, it didn’t kill us. I learned to use a needle and thread by 6, and learned to garden, to feed and care for animals. I also learned to clean vegetables and fruit for canning and freezing. By eight I was into Dad’s tools and figured out how to use a welder by 12.
      I wonder how many stay at homers today have a garden. 40 years ago we had lots of stay at home moms in our local towns, every one had a garden, they didn’t buy everything, their days were productive, anyone darn socks today, sew or mend cloths. The stay at home and sit all day Moms never existed, only in Hollywood, There were very few Laura Petries.

      BTW I’m Male and I still know how to use a sewing machine in a pinch, thanks Mom

  • Eleanor

    C.S. Lewis wrote a terrific essay entitiled, “Priestesses in the Church.” Google it.

    He notes that men and women are equal in diginity but are not interchangeable. This is an important difference in a culture that is desperately trying to render gender neutral. Alas! Vive le difference!

  • Cordelia

    Just as soon as I read the title, I knew it would be a noisy combox…

  • Cordelia

    And, if you want to make it a series, you could write a similar post about the ways in which children are “unequal” to adults. (Did your Protestant background include zealots of the Total Depravity theory arguing that babies are, by nature, greater sinners than adults? Mine did…)

  • Paul Rodden

    Not quite sure how to do the reply thingy as I’m mobile, but there’s an example on the BBC of the reification Fr L has been pointing out here in several of his recent replies – “Papers appalled by events in Boston” – as if ‘papers’ have a life of their own. It’s no longer just a turn of phrase, and that’s what makes it worrying.

    Some would argue that is what Margaret Thatcher meant by saying, “There’s no such thing as society”, and I believe it was Bernard Lonergan who used to say that actions are always done by “real people with names and addresses”.

    • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

      This is indeed what Thatcher said about ‘society’. The context of her comment was that individuals need to take responsibility for themselves and their actions.

      • Michael

        Her individualistic emphasis was perhaps more influenced by her Protestant upbringing that the much more central role community has in the Catholic tradition. I grew up in a traditional rural Catholic setting where individualism was not that important, family was much more so and the Catholic community was paramount and that belief was translated into the people we Catholics choose to be our elected officials. It was the Protestants that voted for the every person for themselves politicians.

      • Paul Rodden

        Which – rightly, I believe – relies on the other ‘principle’ you’ve mentioned in one of the comboxes in this discussion:
        ‘Patriarchy-like any social system–works if the individuals are virtuous. If they are not it fails.’

      • Graham

        … quite forgetting there are many in society who are incapable of taking responsibility for themselves. Thatcher threw ( a word I do not use lightly ) thousands of mentally handicapped people on to the streets to fend for themselves. She also made the poor poorer – I know, I was there, and I lived through that hell that was, for vast numbers of British people a terrible and most miserable time. The ‘state church’ gave her a triumphal send off. Shame on them. Thatcher was a prime example of inequality, and she will go down in English history as a bully.

        • Paul Rodden

          Hi Graham. I’m in England.
          ‘… quite forgetting there are many in society who are incapable of taking responsibility for themselves.’ Did I? I can’t see that implied anywhere in what I said. :)

          As an aside, earlier today, our 11 year old son told us we were making him miserable because we limited his time on his latest computer game. It was as if the world was coming to an end! ‘Miserable’ seems a rather relative term!

          ‘Thatcher’ is ‘shorthand’ for anyone who complied/colluded with, or masterminded that policy, including the most Left-of-Left Councils who implemented ‘Thatcher’s’ ideas, yet did little more than bleat. I interpret the terms ‘Thatcher’, ‘Blair’, ‘Obama’, or ‘Bush’, for example, in the same light. So, in that sense, ‘Thatcher’ did nothing. ‘Thatcher’, is simply the collective term for anything a whole group of complicit individuals did that a Left-leaning person doesn’t like, as ‘Blair’ is for the Right-leaning.

          I’m not trivialising your points. I just think we have limited powers, and there’s no point in moaning about things we can’t influence, just as it’s wrong to sit back when we can influence something.

          All I’ll say is that I have been sacked twice from jobs where I have refused to comply with something against my principles and I have a friend with cerebral palsy who can barely walk and yet is a disability lawyer and currently in the last stages of entering the Jesuits. But we both know disabled and fully-abled individuals who are ‘free-riders’ and milk the system.

          In many cases, statutory enforcement is designed to address the free-riders and abusers of systems who spoil it for everyone else, including the ill-treatment of ethnic minorities, women, and religious persons, however even it can be abused or intentionally misinterpreted – or it might embody genuine injustice.

          However, the key thing is, as Fr L points out, is virtue. Without virtue, any statute is a weapon or licence in the hands of the vice-ridden.

    • enness

      Paul: you not only have an excellent point, but you reminded me of someone I know who is a real stickler for such things, bless him. Words matter!

  • http://www.gardenofholiness.blogspot.com Christie Martin

    Men need both Priests and the vocation of the Priesthood, but the vocation of woman is such we need Priests and not the Priesthood.

    All it took was one pregnancy for me to resonate with the words, “This is my body, given up for you” down to my very sinews. Because of the way I image God in my creation as a woman, I know something a man can never know. He can only approach that Truth by approaching it at the altar, in persona Christi. As a woman, I don’t need the Priesthood as my vocation to approach God in such a way. It is almost my native tongue.

    Not every man needs to be a Priest, but men need the Priesthood to understand himself and Himself.

  • Kathy from Kansas

    One of the most grievous betrayals I ever felt as a woman was after I’d gone to the trouble of actively seeking out a Christian OB/GYN for my annual checkup since, even though I was not a Christian at the time, I was fervently pro-life. I was engaged to be married in a few months, and this Christian doctor was scandalized by the fact that I had no plans to use birth control (my fiance and I were taking Natural Family Planning instruction instead). This CHRISTIAN physician actually tried to GUILT me into going on the Pill — he said I owed it to my husband to be available for sex at any time, and that NFP would be BAD for our marriage! Needless to say, I did NOT go back to that doctor.

  • Mary

    If the RCC asserts that women cannot become priests because all of Jesus’ disciples were men, then why are non-Jewish men allowed to become Pope? Jesus’ disciples were all Jewish. Therefore, by RCC logic, shouldn’t every pope be a Jew?

    • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

      Masculinity and Femininity are universal human characteristics. Ethnicity is not.

    • Imperious Dakar

      Because Mary, according to Catholicism, men and women are different not merely on the physical level, but also on the spiritual level.

      Making men closer and/or more like God in a fundamental way.
      The main justification for having an all male priesthood is that Jesus Christ was also a man.

      • savvy

        Women are equally close to God. The priest plays a sacrificial role. Catholic/Orthodox have a sacrificial priesthood.

        • Imperious Dakar

          That’s actually not true savvy.
          The justification for the all-male priesthood IS the fact that Jesus was a man.
          And the priest is acting in place of Jesus.

          At least if you accept the official Catholic doctrine.

          • savvy

            Not true? This is the function of the priesthood itself.

            1545 The redemptive sacrifice of Christ is unique, accomplished once for all; yet it is made present in the Eucharistic sacrifice of the Church. The same is true of the one priesthood of Christ; it is made present through the ministerial priesthood without diminishing the uniqueness of Christ’s priesthood: “Only Christ is the true priest, the others being only his ministers.”

          • savvy

            There’s a lot more. The priesthood exists to make present Christ’s sacrifice. This is why the priest acts in the place of Christ.

            It’s the cross that unites men and women.

          • savvy

            You have things reversed. Jesus is male, because he is the son. Not the other way around.

            We are made in the image of God. God is not made in our image.

      • savvy

        “Making men closer and/or more like God in a fundamental way.”

        This is not a default position. It’s more like men must seek to become this way.

        • Imperious Dakar

          “Making men closer and/or more like God in a fundamental way.”

          This is not a default position. It’s more like men must seek to become this way

          -If that were true savvy, why is God always described in masculine terms and the Church always described in feminine terms (despite the fact that the Catholic Church is and always has been led and run by men)?

          • savvy

            Yes, but the feminine church is also divine. Christ and this church are the vehicle through which humanity is reconciled to God.

          • savvy

            It’s because distinctions help us see Jesus, who unites both men and women in the cross.

            As for led and run by men. I am calling your bluff. There are women saints, religious, doctors of the church, ministers etc.

      • savvy

        “Making men closer and/or more like God in a fundamental way.”

        I should clarify. Men can only be more like God, when they act in the person of Christ. Women are already like God in the creation as women, esp, as ones who bring forth new life.

        • Imperious Dakar

          That may reflect biological reality savvy, but it does not reflect Church tradition.
          Plenty of Catholic theologians (I think even Father Longenecker has written something to this effect) have argued that men are more like God because they are initiators (the ones who begin) the conception of a child when they give a woman their seed.

          Unlike women, whose bodies respond to that masculine act (and are therefore more like the Church, who responds to God).

          Let use the words of a Traditional Catholic woman (link to source: http://servusfidelis.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/4518/) to sum up the position:

          So why do we call God “He” exclusively? Because in the God-man relationship, God is the INITIATOR and mankind is the RESPONDER. The relative disproportion here is so great that it can be said to be practically infinite. God created and perpetuates in existence the entire universe JUST SO MAN CAN EXIST. God became incarnate JUST SO THE BROKEN RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN GOD AND MAN COULD BE RESTORED. God died on the Cross JUST SO HIS LOVE FOR MAN COULD BE MANIFESTED TO THE MAXIMUM POSSIBLE EXTENT. God comes to us in the Eucharist SO THAT WE NEED NEVER BE SEPARATED FROM HIM. Initiation, initiation, initiation.

          -Now I am not certain if this rational for defining God as masculine is part of official Catholic dogma or not. But I do know that it seems to be a mainstream idea among conservative Catholics.

          • savvy

            Imperious Dakar,

            God is spirit. Masculine and Feminine are attributes. It’s true that incarnation was male and that God is seen as masculine. And the church feminine, but in Catholic teaching, Christ’s church and him together form the whole Christ. Christ is both human and divine, the church is both human and divine.

            The birthing of the Church from the side of Christ is compared to a woman giving birth. Women already do this. A man can only do this as a priest.

            This is the same thing that happens at the liturgy.

            It points to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, the saviour of both men and women.

          • savvy

            The article is simply a description of heterosexual fruitfulness, in the male-female sexual act.

            This biological reality makes it more fitting for God to be masculine, and his bride, the church to be feminine.

      • savvy

        You are not making an attempt to understand. It has to do with the function of the priesthood too.

      • savvy

        This is a logical fallacy. God is masculine, not male. Women as much as men represent the image of God (cf. Gn 5.1-2). The Eternal Word chose to incarnate and reveal himself as the Son of the Father and Bridegroom of God’s People. In order for a human to be a son or a bridegroom, he must be male. Jesus Christ is male because he is Son, not vice versa, as feminists assume.

        For it was part of the divine plan from the beginning for God to covenant himself to a people as a groom covenants himself to a bride. Christ is the Bridegroom, the Church is his Bride. This makes us all feminine in relation to God. Women need not become like men when they approach God, but men must become like women, spiritually. All souls are Christ’s brides.

    • savvy

      Mary,

      The Apostles ordained, gentiles. But, not women into the sacrificial priesthood.

  • http://www.forhewas.blogspot.dk M Chew Chew

    There are great things here to reflect on…. When women values their true nature… men were nuts for women… women were great…. and I know mnay women who you wonder where they learned how to speak… and it is probably from hanging out with the guys, or they learned how to talk at the water cooler…… I have not doubt, Men would be more chivalrous if women were less manly….. and more receptive of men, instead of pushing their place against men…. But ALL THIS SAID… this is things of the world… We are all equal in God’s divine promise…. This is the other issue… when we want positions.. we demand, but we are all in the same position… so the positions are not as important as we make them… they are human…

    • http://platytera.blogspot.com/ Christian

      In my lifetime the trend has been for men to treat women more and more like they treat other men.

      • Imperious Dakar

        That is for the most part a good thing Christian.
        Because men have generally considered each other fully people and fully human in a way that we didn’t women. Traditionally women have usually had a legal status somewhere between property and a permanent minor (i.e. child).

        K Man does a good job representing this POV.
        Women gaining ‘manly’ rights and privileges such as the vote and the ability to own property in their own name WERE becoming more like men. At least in a legal sense.

        But that’s not a bad thing, because men were considered people and responsible adults (in a way that women were not back then).

  • Paul Rodden

    Catholicism works on the ‘et-et’, ‘both-and’ principle and therefore the individual (Theological Anthropology) and society (Common Good) are differentiated, yet equally vital to human flourishing. In the same way both women and men are differentiated, yet equally vital to human flourishing.
    The queen of the virtues is Prudence, which is the capacity to discern the appropriate action or relation in a situation (meson/Aristotle’s ‘mean’) between any two polarities.

    Priests are men because that’s what God wants. Those women who want to be priests – or don’t like what the Church teaches – can become Episcopalians. Protestantism was designed to get round these problems.
    If, however, women want to stay, then maybe they need to investigate whether their desire to stay in the Church because at their deepest level, they know the Catholic Church is THE Church, and if that’s the case, then maybe they need to reflect upon that fact, and starting afresh and getting into a correct relationship with her…

    • Paul Rodden

      Horrible typos and grammar. Maybe I’m turning into Ed… :)

    • David Zelenka

      Hi Paul,

      As you may have seen from my posts my church affiliation has changed over the past 15 year or so since becoming a Christian again. I’m moving toward Catholicism mainly because Jesus calls for unity in his body. So, I certainly don’t think Protestantism is an out for women who want to be priests. For some people going Protestant it’s the only thing they can do because they are pushed aside for a variety of reasons (exclusivity in communion is what I’m thinking, though I argue even those should remain Catholic but I fully understand why they don’t, that’s for sure).

      That said, I certainly don’t think women who want to be priest should become Episcopalians or another branch of the church. (But I don’t think that’s exactly what you’re saying either.)

      It’s important to understand that all baptized Christians are members of “The Church,” the Catholic Church. When they are baptized in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, no matter what church they go to or what water they are in, they enter into Christ’s Body *fully*. But I’ve said this before. And it’s not for us to determine how far they are away from the body of Christ as their life progresses. Other Christian Churches are by nature schismatic, but the individuals aren’t just inherently severed from the Body of Christ. And honestly, the Catholic Catechism and Vatican II understand this. And it seems that Pope Francis understands the importance of this issue also. We must all be brought back together in full communion, whatever that really means, but we must be recognized as members in Christ’s bride, because we simply are.

      In the Protestant Churches, women’s roles vary, but in the conservative/traditional Protestant Churches, women have no decent role if they don’t end up being wives and mothers. In many churches, they are marginalized. Some enter marriages that shouldn’t have. In the Catholic Church womens’ roles can be highly valued in their apostolate/ministry (in the best conditions) and so have a huge role if they are not married or have children. They can even baptize others if conditions present themselves. All of us have extremely important roles in our apostolate. We can free souls, bless people, love people, pray for others, you name it. But we can’t be priests and that’s okay by me. That’s one role that is huge. No one in their right mind should even approach that ministry. People should be called and asked to do that via others in that ministry. It’s a role that’s passed on by hands.

      Don’t worry, my spelling and grammar are terrible in these boxes, especially just before I click “Post.” :)

      • Paul Rodden

        Hi David.
        You’re right, of course, and your reply is welcomed as it’s an excellent and balanced response to my rather flippant comment.
        Thank you.

        • David Zelenka

          Thanks for being so polite, I hope I’m not too annoying!

  • K Man

    “First of all, they are better than men at communication. They not only know how to talk, but they know how to read body language, interpret silent signals and they do so with expert finesse and empathy.”

    Not exactly. Female communication is largely rooted in subtle manipulation while men communicate mostly to get things done as quickly as possible. This is why women seem “better” at communicating.

    ” Women are naturally more compassionate and caring than men and are more in touch with their feelings. ”

    This is true, but the flip side is that women tend to be illogical and act purely on emotion. Thus, they are largely unfit to lead.

    “Women generally look and smell much nicer than men.”

    How nice one looks and smells mostly depends on social class. Men and women of the upper class both tend to look and smell better than those of lower social classes.

    ” Women care much more for children and family and will more often than men have the right priorities when it comes to the most important people in life.”

    Women are better at raising children when they are small, but fathers are needed to turn adolescents into capable adults. This is why single motherhood has such a horrible track record.

    ” In my experience women are distrustful of technology and decide that it is only a tool and not a toy and therefore pay more attention to real concerns.”

    It’s more that women tend to be technically incompetent. I agree that tech can sometimes go overboard, but the male affinity for technology is mostly responsible for our improved quality of life today.

    “I usually find that women are more mature than men and are quicker to step up and take responsibility and get a job done–especially if it is a job that does not necessarily have anything to do with making money or being the top dog”

    Taking responsibility for women is generally a matter of convenience, and even then most don’t like doing it. Women also tend to lack discipline and self-control and tend to live in fantasy more than men do. This is a big reason why feminism is so rampant in developed countries.

    • K Man

      To add to my comment, I feel that this post is a wrong way to justify patriarchy by buttering up women. Patriarchy is necessary, but that is because while women are important and should be respected, they can’t be trusted with political power and leadership.

      • Noor

        Sure.Because men have such a glowing legacy in leadership and politics department.

      • Imperious Dakar

        So in your view K Man, women are important and should be respected.
        BUT men are even more important and should be even more respected, then.

    • Victor

      Hey K Man! Are YA supose to be a miniture “Words” of Father L and if so then in that case, this post had “IT” all if YA get my drift NOW? :)

      Peace

    • Imperious Dakar

      I didn’t fully realize how contemptuous your post was towards men when I first read it K Man (I was not completely awake yet).
      In many ways it is a perfect reflection of the traditional view that men are superior to women and that women are unfit to lead. A narrative that has usually been in men’s self-interest (or it at least selfish interests) to promote.

  • veritas

    I apologise for the number of typos in my post! I have had a very exhausting week! Here is a corrected version.

    Paul said: “Priests are men because that’s what God wants.”

    Thank you Paul for being the first person on this whole discussion to actually give recognition of what God wants in this matter. Every other poster has been arguing from purely human desires, drives and ego.

    God has revealed many important factors in the role of men and women through His words in Scripture, through the practical actions Our Lord took in establishing His Church and through the guidance of Holy Church. Not one of these has rated so much as a mention in this whole blog.

    The arguments about the roles, status and authority of men and women has been based, in modern times, to purely secular arguments, in which God’s revelation has no part, even within the Church circles. Human pride now dominates the discussion almost completely.

  • John

    Sorry, Father, I don’t agree with you that women are better than men. We seem to have swung from one side to the other here: from claiming men are superior, to praising all things feminine over those naughty, nasty men. Surely the truth is inbetween – there are many good men and women and many lousy men and women. As a man, I’m used to seeing dorkish specimens of my own sex, but I see plenty of appalling examples of humanity on the other side of the gender fence too.

    • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

      I think you may have missed the tongue in cheek tone of the piece.

      • enness

        Just maybe. ;)
        Folks: How shall I put this?…Every time you take a tongue-in-cheek post too seriously, a puppy dies!

        • enness

          (Or maybe just a little bit of my spirit.)

  • eddie too

    i am unsure how God could have made men and women any more different. for me, it is undecipherable how a human being can conclude that men and women are essentially the same. even civil laws do not treat men and women as being essentially the same. why would anyone make such a claim?

    as for the catholic priesthood, Jesus decided that only men would be His apostles. Jesus was not bound by social and conventional norms. Jesus knew there would be people in the future who would advocate for women priests. Jesus could have chosen women to perform hierarchical functions in His Church. He did not. Why would those He places in charge of His Church decide Jesus is wrong about a male priesthood?

  • Imperious Dakar

    Good question Eddie.
    I have often said that the RCC is too patriarchal to ever admit women to the priesthood, and that if women want a religion that treats them as equals they should simply leave Catholicism for a religion that does admit women to the priesthood, rather than thinking that they can change the Church (which I regard as something of a fool’s errand).

    • savvy

      Christian equality is based on what God has done, not what we do. Those who affirm the masculine nature of God are right, but the other equation holds that the feminine church is also both human and divine.

      Only Catholic and Orthodox have a priesthood. As do some Anglicans. Protestants do not have priests. A priest is someone who offers sacrifice. A minister is not the same as a priest.

      It would be strange if someone left the church for churches that do not ordain anybody at all.

      • Imperious Dakar

        Simply because Catholics don’t consider other religions female priests valid does not make them invalid (from anything but a Catholic perspective) savvy.

        • savvy

          I never said, they were not valid. I just said, that Catholics/Orthodox and some Anglicans have priests in Christianity.

    • savvy

      Imperious Dakar,

      Sister Sara Butler was the leading proponent of women’s ordination. She changed her mind and now supports the male priesthood. There were women ordained in the Epsicopal church who quit after figuring out what was at stake here. Prof. Alice Lindsay is now Eastern Orthodox and supports the all male priesthood.

      The main issue is the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, that women who love him are not going to give up on.

      • Imperious Dakar

        Sister Sara Butler came over to the POV that Christianity (or at least Catholicism) is inherently patriarchal. I tend to agree.

        But unlike her or Father Longenecker, I don’t think that that’s necessarily something to be proud of.

        • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

          Patriarchy is neutral. It is patriarchs who are good or evil.

          • Imperious Dakar

            How could patriarchy be neutral?

            That would be like saying White Supremacy is neutral.

            Both are based on the premise that certain groups of people are more important and/or better than everyone else due to traits their born with, such as masculinity or being Caucasian.

          • savvy

            A vocation is not a career. The only person arguing that this makes someone more important or better is you.

            You are turning a vocation of sacrifice and service into power and prestige.

          • TheodoreSeeber

            Or for that matter, atheism is neutral, when several million dead east asians would say otherwise.

          • http://saintsworks.net/ Shin

            Well perhaps you are speaking to something different?

            God is a patriarch, the priesthood is a patriarchy, and His natural design for human society and the family, is patriarchy. Therefore patriarchy is fundamentally good. As a Catholic, and also a simple human being defending natural law, it is necessary to promote, respect, embrace and love this patriarchal design. Any lack of realization, respect, and promotion of this is therefore is a fundamental and serious problem that is quite destructive.

            For example family obedience requires obedience to the husband and father, under pain of sin. If this is forgotten the family does not and cannot function properly. And it is an act of virtue, this obedience, and so a good, which sanctifies the wife and children, so not simply a negative. Their holiness is gained from the virtue of obedience.

            It is natural society and government reflect the family.

            When people ask, why not ordain women, and the answer is given ‘We don’t know, we just don’t because Christ didn’t.’ This is given alone a poor answer that likely shows lack of knowledge, I am thinking, no? The answer is the good of patriarchy, yes?

        • savvy

          If you do not hold to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, then you are right. These women can find a religion with a priestess or a goddess.

    • savvy

      Women do not have authority as priests, but equally affect salvation in the church. Christ is not effecting salvation alone. It must be said that salvation in the world is effected by Christ
      with his Church. The foundation of feminine authority rests upon this
      principle. Christ is a bridegroom, and exists with his bride, the Church, according to
      the pattern of a one in flesh unity (Eph. 5:32).

      • Imperious Dakar

        But savvy women DON’T have feminine authority (at least in the Catholic Church).

        Its hierarchy is explicitly, completely, and proudly male.
        Even all the Virgin Mary’s status is all due to her relationship to the Father and Son.

        Moreover, its worth noting that relationship between Christ and the Church (His bride) is not in any way, shape, or form a relationship of equals.

        • savvy

          Imperious Dakar,

          There are different kinds of leadership. Authority is shared in a covenant. If Christ and his bride together form the whole Christ, and one is not complete without the other, then it is a relationship of equals. You are confusing equal in dignity for being the same.

        • savvy

          I think you are confusing the office of the priesthood to leadership in general. Priests are leaders, but not all leaders are priests.

        • savvy

          “its worth noting that relationship between Christ and the Church (His bride) is not in any way, shape, or form a relationship of equals.”

          How so?

        • TheodoreSeeber

          Catherine of Sienna. Your idea is hereby proven false by example.

        • FW Ken

          Why no. Neither is my relationship with God a relationship of equals. That’s what “God” means.

    • savvy

      Equal does not mean suppressing difference in creation.

  • savvy

    “Both are based on the premise that certain groups of people are more important and/or better than everyone else due to traits their born with, such as masculinity or being Caucasian.”

    Nobody says, that masculine is more important or better, simply that its different from the feminine and vice versa. Christ acts with his church, not apart from her.

  • Guest

    I just read this article and as a man I am disgusted. This kind of mentality is why men shy away from church stuff. We wax poetry forever about women (think JP2 “Feminine Genius”) but men get kicked out to the curb. Yes, some men do horrible things but most do not. Women do horrible things to yet the church seems to blame men for making women do them. Guess what, women are responsible for their sin as men are for theirs. Women are not the helpless damsels in distress you portray them to be and men are not the demons you make us out to be. It is garbage like this that make me wonder why I choose the Catholic label where there is such a blatant disrespect and out right ignoring of the gifts of men NOT called to the priesthood.

  • Nobody Cares

    Did nobody notice she tries to claim that “women are far superior to men”,

    Anything said after that is nothing but hate mongering.

    This is yet another, unaccomplished women attempted to spread hate speech.

    Facts-

    87% of all credit card debt belongs to Women,

    92% of all tax dollars are collected from Men,

    There are 3071 “womens rights groups” in North America, all provided by public funds, there are 0 male groups funded

    87% of all Women owners in the USA were awarded the house by a court and have never made a payment

    There is not a single great human innovation created solely by a women.

    (these are facts, and if you;re reading this, you can use Google to check)

    Making up attributes that are not important to society and claiming that you have them does not make you superior, committing your life and soul to a worthy cause is.

  • Guest

    This is an absolute joke. Women are as much responsible for their own insecurities as men are. I’m sorry that as a man, I only desire to provide the best life I can for my future spouse. That I have obtained an education that one day will help make my wife a happier one. That I will have tried to provide security for her when she believes the world is against her. When men have a problem, the find a solution, then move one. When women have a problem, they want to talk about whatever it is without addressing the problem or individual that problem is with. You really want to know why it seems like men make it farther? WE ADDRESS THE PROBLEM! We do not avoid it, we fix it and forget it. Both sexes can learn much from each other. Men can learn how to communicate better and be more in touch with how they are feeling, and women can learn how to problem solve and be less sensitive to small issues. Don’t act like we are unequal because the men of this country built it. Address it and find a way for the common good.


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