Many of us have been following Pope Francis, his progressive pronouncements, his call to interreligious dialogue, his commitment to the environment, his well received visit to the US with interest and enthusiasm. The great omission in the Pope’s agenda, thus far, has been any serious discussion of women’s ordination. Despite the fact that one of the gravest problems for the Church itself is the deficit of qualified priests, the topic of women’s ordination has yet to be addressed. Along with this, of course, would be the question of celibacy and the prohibition against priests being married. All of this is ironic in the context of a Church in which there is a multitude of highly qualified people who would be eager to be ordained. Namely, within the ranks of the Church’s own religious orders. By allowing women’s ordination, the Church could, in one stroke, solve the problem of the shortage of priests. Further, by allowing priests to marry, the Vatican could affirm its commitment to “the family,” while incidentally providing for a large new source of Catholic children!
Should Francis decide to take this on, imagine this …. a massive meetup of Catholic priests and nuns willing to find a new life time companion, ready and eager to raise a brood of children while continuing in their sacramental vocations and expressing their fidelity in a way that results in a new generation of Catholics! Would this not be a win-win-win situation, for the church as well as for the world at large?
There are, of course, many faithful Catholics who have been working on the issue of women’s ordination for several generations, including ….