Sexism in the Catholic Church
In partial fulfillment of the requirement for REL201
Date May 2007
The purpose of this brief is to provide you with an overview of how the Catholic Church view women being ordained in the church. The views are based on the traditional and doctrinal references that the Catholic religion is based on. The views are from various resources such as the Roman Catholic Church in the Vatican, Pope John Paul II, and the newly elected Pope Benedict XVI. The views described in this brief are based on the traditions of old and their refusal to change the traditions to fit for the twentieth century.
SEXISM IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
Sexism in the Catholic Church can be described in various ways. Sexism in the Catholic Church can be described as favoritism toward gender, Slavery, Ethnicity, even age. The dictionary term for sexism is defined as “discrimination against people on the basis of sex; discrimination against, and prejudice stereotyping of women.”(Webster New World Dictionary, 1988) The focus of this paper will deal with the issue of women in the Catholic Church not being able to have a ministerial role in the church. The catholic doctrine belief is based on the fact Jesus Christ only chose men to be his disciples and apostles. Being that the catholic beliefs are doctrine and tradition this is the base for their reason to keep women from becoming ordain ministers as well as priest. The Roman Catholic Church and the Pope refuses to ordain women based on these facts. The Church always followed this example of Christ, both in the apostolic times and even now in the twentieth century. A whole ideology was evolved very early in the European history to justify the suppression of women. Christianity was germinated in parts of Europe were some men had already evolved theories of women. Patriarch wrote: “ woman is a real devil, an enemy of the peace, a source of provocation”. The hatred and slander of women continued over this period of time. Women were considered to be unclean, created by defect, only to service men, witches, and whores. They were not allowed in the sanctuaries because they were considered unclean especially during there monthly cycle. Even today women receive less pay for jobs that are not suited for their skills, they are not always the first choice in any areas of political or social positions. The bases of keeping women out of the ministry in most religions are more or less tradition. A Bible scripture such as (Mat. 10:2) as Jesus was searching for His disciples he only chose men. Even when he had to replace them, He only chose men. In most of the passages in the bible, Jesus never chose a woman nor did He address the public by speaking to the woman specifically. Some would believe that Jesus was a sexist, but during the times it was only tradition for a man to be the head of everything and the role of a woman during the biblical times were to listen to the man, nurture her family and husband. During the biblical times when Jesus walked this earth, Christianity was a very warous event. People were not accepting of the Christ therefore it leads to wars and battles. (Mat. 24: 6). During those days women did not do battle. As of today the tradition still holds and it plays a significant part in our everyday lives as well as our religious worship. We accept many things that women do in our society today because they are not left with many choices, such as doing jobs that are more fitting for men. But a role as a Priest, Pope, Bishop or any other ministerial role in the catholic church will not be one that will no time soon or maybe even never accepted in the catholic society. The role of a nun in the Catholic Church is the only role that women have mastered and will forever have. In many...