Writer Argues For Female Priests, Called Little Girl Throwing Tantrum
6:30 pm, May 26th | by Lilly ODonnell
Valerie Schultz suggested in an article for The Bakersfield Californian that the time has come for change in the Catholic Church, and for women to be ordained as priests. And she got exactly the response one might expect to a criticism of patriarchy — insults from patriarchs.
Schultz sits on the board of Cal State Bakersfield’s Institute for Religion, Education, and Public Policy, and the article she wrote was to announce a screening by the organization of the documentary, “Pink Smoke Over the Vatican.” The documentary is about the controversial idea of women priests, so Schultz, a Catholic, took the opportunity to present her views on the debate.
Women, of course, played leadership roles during the brief time of Jesus’s ministry, as well as in the days of the early church. A woman was the main witness to the risen Jesus on the first Easter morning. St. Paul tells us, in his Letter to the Galatians, that “there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28.) The denial of the possibility of a woman’s vocation to the priesthood is a tradition that came about much after the time of christ. And traditions can change.
She wrote of the sadness many Catholic women feel at knowing that they can only go so far in service of their god, and of praying for inclusion in the sacrament of the priesthood.
Deacon Daniel Rindge wrote a response in the newspaper, calling the reservation of ordination for men a “key aspect of Catholic theology,” and accusing Schultz of disparaging and misrepresenting the religion. Rindge’s piece was condescending and totally missed the fact that Schultz was pushing for discussion and change by just pointing out that ordaining women is contrary to the way the church does things.
“The matter of women’s ordination has long been settled within the Roman Catholic Church,” he wrote. “Priestly ordination is reserved to men alone.”
But it was nothing compared to the annotated version that appeared on the blog of another priest, Father John Zuhlsdorf, under the title “A deacon responds to a gushy women’s ordination propaganda piece in a secular newspaper.”
A while back there was a dippy filmette about wymynprysts “Pink Smoke Over the Vatican” inspired by an equally dippy column in the Bakersfield Californian by one Valerie Schultz, a board member of CSUB’s Institute for Religion, Education, and Public Policy (IREPP) and a columnist for the Bakersfield Californian. I had seen Schultz’s original column, but considered it too loopy for your time and my effort.
However, a permanent deacon in Bakersfield has responded in the paper. His column can give you some pointers about how to respond to this fantasy that the Church can change her “policy” about the impossibility of the ordination of women.
He wrote, by way of introduction to Rindge’s piece. The obnoxiousness is so consuming it even overpowers the fact that the column was inspired by the “dippy filmette,” not vice versa, as Zuhlsdorf said. He goes on to pepper the entirety of Rindge’s writing with snippets of snark that do more to make him look like a catty gossip than to point out the absurdity of the notion that women could be priests, as he seemed to intend.
After a line in which Rindge references the title of Schultz’s column, “Film documents battle for women to be priests,” Zuhlsdorf wrote in brakets, ”Which, we know, is a pointless battle, just as it is a pointless battle for a screaming bratty little girl to resist her father’s hands when he pulls her away from the table saw.”
Because, as we all know, any woman who wants the same opportunities afforded to men is, in fact, a little girl throwing a tantrum.