Wednesday, August 20, 2008

What Reigning is All About

I don't intend on making this blog a podium. I guess I have enough "bombs" in my life to prevent that. But I can't help but share thoughts as I live my daily life. As in the 10 commandments, the "thou shalt nots" become the focus. So I think that to the naked eye the top heavy maleness of the Catholic Church (and other major Christian denominations) is misunderstod. Most women, Catholic and others alike, think that major reformation is needed to make the genders equal. However it is a secular and erroneous viewpoint when it comes to the Body of Christ.

Indeed God offers and has always offered something much more precious to women than the priesthood. Jesus himself, in a time when women were property, elevated the woman to all dignity and worth - but He didn't equate equality with "sameness". God intentionally created them male and female. He chose a woman to bear His Only Begotten Son. He chose a woman to nurture and raise Him. Jesus' mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary, must be our example as women in the Catholic Church today. If you think that means men make all the decisions and women just go about mopping up then you are missing out of the whole Spiritual dimention of who Mary is. I like to think that Jesus thirty years sojourn with His Mother was a remarkable training ground for Mary's influence in the origin of His Church. She is His first disciple, a remarkable creation - full of grace! Think about that - to be full of grace. Mary alone yielded to that Grace more importantly than anyone before or since. Sit down sometime and contemplate Mary carrying Jesus in her womb, holding him as a child. Learning from him as a man. This was given to a woman before men.

I guess there is no denying that Jesus came as a male. He appointed 12 male apostles to lead His Church. In God's realm, according to His Holiness John Paul II's Theology of the Body, the male's role is the initiator. He is really the servant. The woman's role is the receiver of the gift. She takes it and nutures it whether it be child or doctrine or revelation. And it is together that we see how God operates. Indeed, it is His sign to us of the Trinity. If we busy ourselves with equality and sameness we run very shy of why God created us and we miss out on what He has for us personally. I'm sorry I am not into inclusive language - I am not that insecure.

So when it comes to Mass, the priest must be male b/c not only Jesus and the apostles were and their successors, but they stand in Christ's stead as the sacrifice of the Mass is celebrated. If as the Catholic Church teaches, that in all Sacraments the priest is representing Jesus it seems a little ridiculous to put a woman there - if you get what I mean.

In our society today and even historically, the definition of maleness is dominance. In God's realm it is service. In secular society gender must be equal and same. In God's realm it is complimentary and equal. Both are needed to present God's message to all people (there! inclusive).

God has given us His Son to win for us adoption into His family. We who believe in His gift of grace will one day reign with Him - when we understand what reigning is all about.

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