With thanks to a reader for the tip, consider the latest drivel appearing at the website for the so-called women’s ordination conference, a call to support poor Fr. Bozek penned by none other than “Roman Catholic Womanpriest” Elsie McGrath:
Supporting Fr. Marek Bozek, a priest who supports women’s ordination and an inclusive, accountable church
By Elsie Hainz McGrath, Roman Catholic Womanpriest
On Shrove Tuesday in St Louis, the “wrath of God” rained down and struck the electrical supply at the archdiocesan chancery offices. As hundreds of people gathered around the building to pray with Fr. Marek Bozek before his meeting with Archbishop Raymond Burke, a small cluster of perhaps two dozen solemn-faced “canon law supporters” stood to one side in quiet witness to their belief. Fr. Marek–who was excommunicated in 2005–asked the larger group to simply pray the rosary during his meeting, and so we did, in English and in Polish, for the next 90 minutes or so.
When he emerged from the Cathedral, to which he had been “escorted” because of the power drain in the chancery offices, the rain came down in buckets and the thunder clapped, and the faithful crowd clapped too. Standing under umbrellas that did nothing to prevent being drenched through, we tried to hear Fr. Marek’s statement, and to read the besotted copies he passed out, of the “offer” he had tendered to the archbishop. He said his offer was not accepted.
The point is Fr. Marek’s open support of the ordinations of Rose Marie Hudson and me as Roman Catholic priests in St. Louis last November, which has left Burke a frustrated and embarrassed man. When Rose Marie and I wrote Burke last October, to inform him of our intentions, the St. Louis persecutions began. Those persecuted include individuals and institutions all over this archdiocese, but none have been so public as the blatant unjust censuring of Rabbi Susan Talve and her Central Reform Congregation, and the ongoing scapegoating of Fr. Marek Bozek and the St. Stanislaus Community.
And herein lies the irony of this continuing soap opera: Rose Marie and I were also declared excommunicated by Burke, who continues to preach that we are not really priests, not really Roman Catholic. So what’s the point?
The point is that we are validly ordained and Burke knows it. The point is that we did not back down from him … and neither did Susan Talve … and neither did Marek Bozek … and Burke doesn’t know how to gracefully back away. The point is that Burke is guilty of confounding the issues and thoroughly confusing the faithful–a charge he doggedly levels against all who are persevering in ministry and speaking truth to power.
Burke insists that women’s ordination is infallibly impossible, even though the doctrine of infallibility states that only those articles of faith which are embraced by the community of believers and have been a part of the tradition of the church since its earliest times can be declared infallible. This is not so with the teaching on women’s ordination. The most reliable surveys reveal 63% of US Catholics support women priests, and 81% support women deacons, so it is clearly not the sense of the faithful that this is impossible. And as there is scriptural, historical, and archaeological evidence that women were ordained for the first 12 centuries of Christianity, it is clearly not a part of the church’s tradition that only men have been ordained.
It is time we all speak truth to power. Contact Archbishop Raymond Burke today in care of The Catholic Center, 4445 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63108. Send your public letters of support to email@example.com
I am sure that readers of this blog know that Ms. McGrath’s defense of the possibility of women’s ordination and her view of the actions of the Archbishop come from a certain, shall we say, “viewpoint”. Every time I see some new statement from these people, I think of Hank Hill’s reflection, “Are you still talking?”
And yet again, remember that the St. Stan’s thing is only about the money… it’s only about the money…it’s only about the money…it’s only about the money…