Feminist Chutzpah: HuffPo Columnist Scolds Pope Francis For His Catholic Faith

Feminist Chutzpah: HuffPo Columnist Scolds Pope Francis For His Catholic Faith February 7, 2014

Not content with Pope Francis’ washing of women’s feet on Holy Thursday or phoning up the Carmelites of Lucena on New Year’s Eve, HuffPo columnist Angela Bonavoglia wants to see more evidence of the pontiff’s respect for and commitment to women.

With that in mind, Angela Bonavoglia–self-appointed papal advisor–has published a “To-Do List” of demands for the Holy Father.

And high on that list, of course, is acceptance of abortion.  Oh–and blessing the use of contraception.  And throwing away the quaint idea of the Virgin Birth.

Yep, Ms. Bonavoglia, author of Good Catholic Girls: How Women Are Leading the Fight to Change the Church, is sure she knows better than Francis about how the Church ought to think.  That’s why she feels competent to offer some helps so that he can do a better job leading the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.

I am left breathless by the cheekiness of those–male or female–who hold their own particular viewpoint in such high regard that they would override 2,000 years of Church teaching.  The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child tried that this week and got a quick and stern rebuke from Archbishop Tomasi, who represents the Vatican at the UN in Geneva, with a longer retort from Pope Francis to follow.

Angela Bonavoglia

But undeterred by the Vatican’s insistence on its right to define its doctrine, Bonavoglia pushes on.  She clearly believes that she has a bead on God’s thought which surpasses Pope Francis’ timeless teaching; and so she has published a nine-point bullet list to help him to shape up and conform to her views.

[Hold on just a minute while I pick my jaw up from the floor….]

Bonavoglia wants Pope Francis to make the Church more hip.

Stop talking, she says, about the role of women in the Church–since women have been there all along.  [Here, she’s going to have to do some ‘splainin’ to other feminists who have decried the Church’s supposed disregard for women.]

Bonavoglia urges the pope to recognize women’s God-given moral authority.  [That’s a watchword for “Let us abort our children if we feel like it.”]  She throws in his face Pope Francis’ own words “Who am I to judge?” and admits that  abortion can be a difficult decision.  But God obviously trusted women to make that decision, she thinks:  look where She put the embryo.

[Oh, my eyes… my eyes!  They just keep rolling!]

Get with it, she scolds, and study up on feminist theology.  Start listening to the great thinkers [here she forgets Aquinas and Augustine, but names Fordham’s censured theologian Elizabeth Johnson].

And contraception!   Good grief, get over it, would you? she urges.  Bring those American bishops with their faulty “religious liberty” campaign into line and Bless Birth Control!  Why,

“…to insist — as do the U.S. bishops in their religious freedom crusade that birth control is not health care, when every major health organization maintains that it is crucial the health of mothers and babies — is downright medieval. If the church could quietly erase an 800-year-old belief in limbo from Church doctrine, no longer marooning unbaptized babies out of God’s sight, then surely you can finally embrace the majority recommendation of Pope John XXIII’s Papal Birth Control Commission and approve the use of artificial contraception.”

Leave behind the Virgin Birth–a “myth” which Bonavoglia claims was, anyway, just a feeble attempt by early Christianity to win over converts from the pagan/goddess religions who already accepted divine progeny springing from all manner of human/spirit couplings.

[Eek!  Screaming here!]

Next, if the Pope consults with Bonavoglia, he’ll realize that he must–MUST!– appoint a woman to the College of Cardinals.  After all, she says, the failure-to-resemble Jesus argument, which assumes Jesus saw male genitals as integral to priestly ministry, is absurd.  [I am of the opinion that insistence on women serving the Church as priests and bishops is the ultimate in clericalism–but that’s for another day.]

Bonavoglia wraps it up with three oft-heard and ill-conceived demands:  end compulsory celibacy, hold your brethren accountable [apparently, she didn’t see the story about Benedict XVI laicizing over 400 priests in just two years], and don’t hold meetings about women without women [Oops again!  Just two years ago, several of my female friends were among women gathered at the invitation of the Vatican for a conference on the anniversary of Pope John Paul II’s Apostolic Exhortation Mulieris Dignitatum (On the Dignity of Women).]  


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  • I couldn’t comment since I don’t have an account with them or a Facebook account. But this is what I would have said to her:

    “Are you kidding me? You want the Pope to not be Catholic? Give me a break. This is feminist silliness. This gives feminism a bad name, or more precisely sterotypes feminist for the kooks the extremists seem to be. Obviously you’re not Catholic.”

    • kathyschiffer

      She thinks she is, Manny! Hence that “Good Catholic Girls” book she wrote. She just wants to define what Catholicism is.

      • I suspected she was. Thanks. 🙂

    • Sav

      This is unprofessional feminism, these are feminist madness I would rather say, rather than what you said ‘feminist silliness’. Haha, that was good. But half of the demands most of these feminist groups make under the banner of ‘women’s rights’ is actually madness and nonsense

      • “Silliness” was my way fo being kind. I could have characterized it even worse than “madness.” LOL.

  • oregon nurse

    Just another example of the narcissism that is rampant in our society. These whiners don’t actually want what they say they want. What they can’t tolerate is being excluded, not having their ideas rule, e.g., ss couples don’t want marriage, they want what they think marriage confers on them, and catholics that fight Church teachings don’t want to be Catholic, they just can’t stand to have their opinions excluded.

  • BXVI

    Self-professed Catholics who reject the Magisterium, like this woman, are destroying the Church from within. To be a Catholic in communion with the Church, one is REQUIRED to accept the authority of the Magisterium and assent to ALL of it’s teachings. These types are worse than secular enemies of the Church, they are the enemy within. We are to love our enemies, of course, but that does not mean we are required to give them carte blanche to make loud, public demands for change of UNCHANGEABLE doctrine and face no rebuke from their pastors. As if the Church could ever change the doctrine of the Virgin Birth at this point. She clearly knows next-to-nothing about Catholicism if she thinks that is even possible. Let alone that by reversing itself on such a fundamental (and biblical) tentet of the Magisterium at this point would expose the entire foundation of the Church (the infallible authority with which Jesus Christ entrusted her) as having been a massive fraud. She should at least stop to think for a moment about the ultimate implications of that which she demands. She should be forcefully and loudly rebuked by her Bishop. She should be told publicly that her views are not just un-Catholic but that they betray an entirely un-Catholic worldview on her part. She clearly does not “get” that being a Catholic in good standing requires her assent to the very UNCHANGEABLE doctrines she decries. But she won’t be rebuked. She will be allowed to spout all kinds of nonsense and heresy and still present herself for communion as though nothing is wrong. And therein lies the problem.

    • BXVI

      And don’t give me that stuff about her bishop meeting with her privately, etc. Look, her comments and her publications are public and are intended to influence other Catholic “good girls.” The rebuke must be public. It is not so much about her as about protecting the flock.

    • Sad to say, but practical Catholicism only requires assent to 7 teachings:

      The Catechism of the Catholic Church lists 5 precepts. The last two are included elsewhere in the catechism but
      are not listed as precepts. And they are equally important. The original seven are listed here for historic educational value.

      I. To attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation, and resting from servile works.

      II. To observe the days of abstinence and fasting.

      III. To confess our sins to a priest, at least once a year.

      IV. To receive Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist at least once a year during Easter Season.

      V. To contribute to the support of the Church.

      VI. To obey the laws of the Church concerning Matrimony.

      VII. To participate in the Church’s mission of Evangelization of Souls.(Missionary Spirit of the Church)

      From http://www.ecatholic2000.com/essentials/precepts.shtml

      Now I must admit, I have no idea why a feminist who wants the change the church, would bother with these seven items.

      • oregon nurse

        I think it’s far too simplistic Ted to say that’s all you have to assent to to be Catholic. Your list has far too much emphasis on changeable rules and far too much unchangeable dogma has been left out of these precepts.

        • It is a bare minimum list for membership, not a list of possible sins or a comprehensive list of all things Catholic.

          • oregon nurse

            Depends on how you define membership and in this case words and meanings matter a lot. You have to accept all the dogmatic (and even many non-dogmatic) teachings to be Catholic. This list doesn’t even come close and it’s not what the list is meant for anyway. It’s about minimal practices so as not to be in sinful avoidance of Catholic obligations. You can practice this stuff all you want but if you don’t believe, you’re still not Catholic.

      • BXVI

        You are woefully confused. Under your example, I could deny that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, reject the Seven Sacraments, even reject that the Church is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic and still be a Catholic in good standing. The precepts merely present the bare minumum required of Catholics with respect to PRACTICE of the faith, not what Catholics are required to BELIEVE. It is shocking that someone can be Catholic and not know this.

        To sum up the official teaching of the Church:
        l. If it is a teaching proclaimed by the extraordinary magisterium,
        a good Catholic must assent under pain of heresy.
        2. If it is a teaching proclaimed by the ordinary magisterium, e.g.
        the 10 Commandments, a good Catholic must assent under pain of serious sin.
        3. If it is a teaching seriously proclaimed by the magisterium in a
        non-infallible way, on a non-infallible topic, a good Catholic
        must assent under pain of sin, possibly mortal. Canon 752 covers
        this case, (see below).

        In brief, when the official Church teaches, we must assent. If we
        dissent, the gravity of the sin will depend on the gravity of the matter involved.

        • It is only a bare minimum list for membership for the most Cafeteria Catholic. If they can’t even do these 7 things, they aren’t anyplace close to communion with the Church.

          Anybody who actually assents to official Church teaching, will be doing these 7 items. They may be sinful as all get out, but they are in the Church as opposed to apart from it.

          • HowardRichards

            You’re still confused. Anyone who is validly baptized (even by Protestants) is minimally a member of the Catholic Church.

          • Care to cite the catechism on that one Howard? My list had paragraph numbers- and history; for instance, the Knights of Columbus have used this list as their definition of practical catholicism since 1882.

          • HowardRichards

            Start reading at 1262 and read through the end of the section. Pay particular attention to
            1267 Baptism makes us members of the Body of Christ: “Therefore . . . we are members one of another.” Baptism incorporates us into the Church. From the baptismal fonts is born the one People of God of the New Covenant, which transcends all the natural or human limits of nations, cultures, races, and sexes: “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body.”
            1271 Baptism constitutes the foundation of communion among all Christians, including those who are not yet in full communion with the Catholic Church: “For men who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in some, though imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church. Justified by faith in Baptism, [they] are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers by the children of the Catholic Church.”81 “Baptism therefore constitutes the sacramental bond of unity existing among all who through it are reborn.”

          • Thank you- just wanted to get this clear.

    • Sav

      Well said Mr. Campbell. Thumbs up to you.

    • james hughes

      That is the essential problem. The bishops in the main have been poor leaders and simply refuse to exercise their authority and crack down on these people including the politicians. This failure simply creates confusion and scandal among the faithful who have simply been left without proper catechesis for over 50 years while the nutcases have free rein to sow the seeds of confusion.

  • Diogenes71

    Angela B is not aging well – either mentally or physically. Looney whiner! Wha! Wgha! Wha!

  • JDLeavitt

    I was re-reading I Clement today. It really speaks to the ethos of people like Ms. Bonavoglia. No, seriously. Just read the first two chapters, and you’ll see what I mean.

    • ThirstforTruth

      What is I Clement? Are you referring to an earlier Pope Clement? If so, which of his writings are you recommending? or is this another Clement,
      as in the body of saints? Maybe you mean Clement, the successor to ST
      Peter and the third Pope and his letters, the first one? Can this Letter 1
      be read online?

      • kathyschiffer

        I think he’s talking about an apocryphal epistle.

        • ThirstforTruth

          Thanks Kathy. I thought perhaps Pope Clement I was being referenced and his First Letter to the Corinthians. It
          would be, I guess, as you suggest, an apocryphal epistle.
          Perhaps JDLeavitt will enlighten us?

  • Linus

    Just another mindless, spoiled brat.

  • djp80

    Men telling

  • djp80

    Men telling women what to do with their bodies is bad enough, but when women start agreeing with them I think that is a bigger issue. This is 2014, I think it’s time to stop pawning off Bronze Age Shepherd as Infallible sources of “Divine Intellect” let alone SELF APPOINTED men 2000 years later. Nothing like having someone with no experience of bearing a child telling yo what you can and cannot do.

    • kathyschiffer

      I have borne children, so let me tell you, djp: You can do whatever the hell you want with your body. You just can’t kill OTHER people’s bodies, even small, unborn ones.

      • Sav

        Well said Kathy, these blind people will never understand, they just know how to waste their time carrying banners and going on useless marches and rallies saying, “abortion is woman’s right” and other ridiculous nonsense, and also waste others time since they just want to hog the limelight. Its really silly what kind of laws these lawmakers make, when you take out a gun and shoot someone you are to be hanged to death, whereas when you kill a helpless child you are to walk freely as if it is not an issue. These feminist groups will never succeed, all they will get is failure and failure without any hope of honor or success

    • Athelstane

      Hello djp,

      Thou shalt not kill.

  • Athelstane

    Leave behind the Virgin Birth…

    Why not just have us toss over the Trinity, too, while we’re at it? Jesus was just this wise man, you see, who showed up to overthrow the old social order and tell us to be nice to each other – well, except for the rich and right-wingers, since they’ll get what’s coming to them.

    It fairly takes your breath away. Or used to. One starts t get used to it after a while.

  • profling

    More women in the Church? Given the depleted number of men attending, and the reduced role of the priest at liturgies, it won’t be very long before we have an all-female Church. The feminists will finally have won.

  • Alden Smith

    I read the article TO Do list and are still laughing.

  • Sav

    These people should read, “Rome Sweet Home” by Scott Hahn, there in the book a then Presbyterian Scott Hahn clearly states why contraception is a sin and should be avoided by using verses from the Bible itself, these illiterate feminists think that contraception as invented by the Church, that is understandable since they never read the Bible. But now if they don’t believe in god and His Word then there is no use quarreling with them.

  • Thomas

    Kathy, I agree with your take on this “We women are going to change the Church” mentality–as if the Church were no different than a democratically elected governmental institution. The so-called “Rise of Democracy” the past couple of centuries has really created some collateral damage to any notion of ecclesiastic obedience.
    But, I need an academic question answered: Bonavoglia cites the 800 year matter of Limbo to make her case, and others use the Church’s own admission of error (JP II’s apology to Galileo) as evidence that the Church can change its doctrine. I am not sure how to answer this. Can provide me a brief answer and an easy to obtain reference for additional study?
    Thank you!

    • SixtusVIth

      Thomas, limbo and geocentrism were never doctrines of the faith. The hag is either ignorant or lying. Limbo appears nowhere in the Roman Catechism’s section of Baptism, for example: http://www.cin.org/users/james/ebooks/master/trent/tsacr-b.htm

      • Thomas

        Please continue
        If the two things cited above were not doctrines, what were they? Beliefs? Opinions? Is there an essay on this that I can read? Thank you.

        • Rob B.

          I would say they are beliefs supported by philosophical and traditional underpinnings.

        • CRS

          They were debates. Limbo is still debated/discussed/awaiting definition/uncertain. It is one of those things that have yet to be revealed to the Church, it seems, making it more urgent to pray for the dead.

    • Rob B.

      As I understand it, Limbo is still a debated topic; there is no definitive teaching, like there is on the Virgin Birth or abortion.

    • CRS

      Here is a link concerning limbo and Benedict’s positions regarding it. It is a little hostile to Benedict’s belief, but it will give you some background for further investigation: http://www.traditionalmass.org/articles/article.php?id=73&catname=15

  • dpharisee

    Good Luck Angela. I hope you will be successful in convincing the pope NOT to be CATHOLIC. I hope to see anyone changing the pope to be otherwise in this lifetime

  • Rob B.

    I think the Holy Father would have two words for Ms. Bonavoglia: “Bless you!” 🙂

  • WORD

    Well, luckily, God does not permit women to teach or have authority over men, so the huffpost-whore can basically sukk it.

    And to all you men out there, do us all a favour and beat your b*tches back to the kitchens NOW.

    I`m fed up listening to these harlots nagging.

    So put your women across your legs, pull down their nickers and give them a good, thorough spanking on their buttocks, and tell them “THIS is what happens if you ever turn feminist.”

    • SaveUsFromStupidMen

      You’re stupid. Recently, I’ve been in a facebook, “conversation” if you want to call it that, where two men are INSISTING that there are NO valid sacraments outside the Catholic church. This despite having Canon law 844, para. 2 shoved under their ignorant noses. But no, they are “men” and think all women are “stupid.” YOU can suck it. And go **** yourself while you are at it. You can’t even spell “nickers” right. I hope some woman cuts your precious d*ck off.

  • CRS

    I must have laughed very hard internally, because my head feels like exploding. Seriously, her Satanic-level pride is laughable. Just who does she think she is?