There is an excellent blog post about male priesthood from Jennifer Fulwiler on the National Catholic Register. The blog post is the more interesting, because the now-converted (Deo gratias…) author remembers her reasoning about the male priesthood when an atheist and – as she herself admits – a feminist.
Mrs. Fulwiler brilliantly puts it as follows (emphases always mine):
At the time I had recently become a mother, and there’s nothing like pregnancy and childbirth to hit home the fact that men and women are really, really different. Even outside of the Catholic perspective, there’s no denying that whoever created us—whether you call it God or Nature or Allah or whatever—created men and women with complementary yet entirely separate capabilities. Women can carry new human life within their wombs, men can’t. Women can breastfeed, men can’t. Men are generally stronger; the strongest man in the world is always going to be the stronger than the strongest woman in the world. The list of the innate differences between the genders goes on and on. Assuming that the entire human race was not born into an inherently unfair situation, it would seem that our Creator does not believe that you need to be able to do all the same stuff in order to be equal.
This injection of common sense would do a lot of good to a lot of feminist – be they atheist, or wannabe Christian – out there. But such an injection would require them to sacrifice some holy cows, which is why they choose to remain impervious to logic, and allergic to truth. One of these cows is described by the blog post author as follows:
[…] I had begun to question this pervasive modern idea that what you do is your value. […]. One of the results of this idea is that we, as a society, decided that if women are not invited to do every single thing that men are invited to do, the only possible explanation could be that they are valued less — and being barred from doing certain activities means that their options for reaching complete fulfillment as human beings are limited. The more I considered it, the more this worldview struck me as sadly utilitarian. I started to think that it’s possible to believe that men don’t make good lactation consultants, women don’t make good guerrilla warfare combatants, etc. without it being a commentary about the inherent worth of one gender over another.
I generally explain this concept with my persuasion that feminists want to be men, and therefore feel as a deminutio every instance in which it becomes clear to them – or, alternatively, to the thinking part of the human race – that they cannot. Strangely, you never hear feminists fighting for the abolition of one of the last, blatant bastion of sexual discrimination: the separation of men and women in sport competitions. No need for equality there. Differences must be taken into account. There are structural specificities that would be impossible to ignore.
The next injection of common sense comes regarding the male priesthood itself:
When God took on human flesh, he did so as a man. He could have come down as a woman, as a brother and sister team, or as a genderless being. But he didn’t. If you want to reject Christianity as untrue, that’s one thing; but if you accept Jesus Christ as God incarnate, it seems like you must also accept that God sees the male gender as having a special role to play in the world.
Yes, brilliantly and amusingly true. Once again, the contradiction of accepting Jesus as God Incarnate and refusing what choices this God Incarnate made is clearly absurd. The fact that 100% of the Apostles were men (no female quota there, in a clear show of political incorrectness) actually closes the question.
The best part is for the end: the Blessed Virgin.
Once I discovered Catholicism, one of the many things that rang true about its teachings was the emphasis on Mary. It made perfect sense that God would give a woman a critical role in his plan, someone who could serve as an example of perfect feminine holiness—and it made sense that his true Church would understand and celebrate this fact.
I add to these beautiful words a fact that to me seems extremely relevant: that in the heavenly hierarchy (yes! There is a heavenly hierarchy!) the Blessed Virgin is above every saint, above every Apostle, even above Peter and Paul and St. John the Evangelist and St. John The Baptist; even above every Angel, every one of them! Only the Trinity is higher in glory than the Blessed Virgin!
So let me reassume the brilliant feminist theory: a bunch of chauvinistic traitors manage to utterly ruin the clearly feminist, emancipated message of Jesus; they isolate Mary Magdalen and succeed in cancelling from history every trace of her apostolate; they proceed to create a rigidly man-dominated system, clearly showing which one is the qualitatively better sex………then they proceed to put a woman in the highest place conceivable for a human being, and this in a society that had come to consider women as little more than reproduction instruments.
Explain this, angry feminists….
It is beautiful to see that, when one is ready to apply some elementary logic rather than senseless slogans, a lot of things start to appear very clear, and to make a lot of sense.
Even for an atheist.