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Chew The Fat With The Friar! Is the Church misogynistic and bigoted?

I fear the Church has for too long been both, misogynistic and bigoted! I also fear it still has a long way to go before we see an end to this!

I grew up in a devout Roman Catholic family and started my Franciscan life within the Roman Catholic Church. I was born before the Vatican II and was a novice when some of the teaching and direction of Vatican II was being implemented. There was much good that started to be born from Vatican II, but the misogynistic, patriarchal stuffiness still remained and to a great extent still remains a stench in the Church today, (Misogynist: showing feelings of hating women or a belief that men are much better than women) Until, we let go of the idea of a male sacerdotal priesthood, we will continue to abuse our sisters and lord it over them! Some of the other Church traditions have opened the windows and doors and there are now many wonderful and holy women, in oversight of parishes and congregations, here in the UK and around the world. These true sisters of the gospel have had a mountain to climb and have had to battle the misogyny that churches have revelled in for far too long!

Is the Church bigoted? (Bigoted: having strong, unreasonable beliefs and disliking other people who have different beliefs or a different way of life) Sadly, the answer is yes! It has for too long thought of itself as inerrant and has continued to abuse those who it disagrees with. Whether in theology or in conscience; over women in the priesthood or prespyterate; over sexuality, and over LGBTQ issues, to name but a few areas. It has burnt those who disagreed with it and excommunicated and excluded those who did not conform.

So what does the future hold?

I have hope that the institution will slowly (I say, 'slowly', as I do not think this is something that will happen over night!) line itself up with the mind and heart of Jesus Christ and walk the walk and not just talk the talk! Yes, it will be messy! But that is exactly where the Holy Spirit can move and create! I pray that love will lead us and open the shut misogynistic and bigoted hearts of all who are supposed to be shepherds of the flock. I pray that we all will contribute to the pulling down of these abusive, ideologies and twisted theologies and false mindsets. I pray our hermnutics (and our exegesis) will be directed by love and seen and understood through the prism of the eyes of Jesus.

Note: This is my personal opinion and not necessarily the opinion of any of my Franciscan, sisters and brothers.


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