More debunking of the “JPII held back women” myth

A very good article sent my way by my dear little brother, Thom, who is the most truly CENTRIST person I know, always fair.

Anyway – here are women who knew John Paul the Great, and who advanced in their work because of him, speaking about the changes he has wrought:

“If you knock the issue of ordination off the table, women have advanced significantly,” even at the Vatican, Sister Mary Ann Walsh, spokeswoman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said in Rome this week.

The Vatican employee who established the Web site where Pope John Paul II’s teachings are posted in six languages is a U.S. Franciscan nun, Sister Judith Loebelein, nicknamed Sister Web.

One of the first female church lawyers to work at the Vatican is Sister Sharon Holland, a Michigan-born member of the Monroe-based Immaculate Heart of Mary nuns.

Holland’s boss, an Italian Salesian nun, was named last year as an undersecretary of a Vatican congregation, the first time a woman was promoted to a position held by priests since the 16th Century. Sister Enrica Rossana, now the third-ranking official in a Vatican congregation that oversees religious men and women, is vigorous, outgoing and proud of where she is.

“I am the only one, the only woman,” Rossana said this week about her one-year tenure as undersecretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life. “John Paul II put me in this job.”

You’ll want to read the whole thing.

As I have always said: Ministry is available to everyone within the church. Ordination is not the be-all-and-end-all. If you truly are called to ministry, and you are generous enough to answer the call, God will know where to put you, and how to best use you.

When you have become God’s in the measure He wants, He, Himself will know how to best bestow you on others. Unless He prefer, for they greater advantage, to keep thee all to Himself.’ St. Basil

And the whole idea of women in ministry is, after all, to serve and give up one’s own power, isn’t it? Rather than to “feel empowered?”

Seems to me that if John Paul II taught us anything, he taught us that to offer oneself into Christ service – to REALLY offer oneself, and to be taken up on it, is to be used, and used, and used, by Christ until there is nothing left – until you have become a burned out cipher for Christ. Or, to quote Paul – to be poured out like a libation.

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