Should women be ordained as deacons?

Posted 3 years.


  • Joan Hill - 3 years ago

    No, it's a half measure. Women need women priests for pastoral care. Maybe not for saying Mass (that's a separate question), but at a minimum for counseling and reconciliation. a) There are issues that are too delicate, or inappropriate, to discuss with a man, and b) men are simply coming from a different world, a different set of experiences. Worst case scenario, imagine a woman who had been abused discussing it with a man, priest or not. The other problem is that condescension toward women, and utter cluelessness, still exist. "There, there, dear," is really annoying. Happily, more priests are being trained not to be clueless, and many wonderful, intuitive priests who are good listeners, and respectful, do exist, but comments coming out of Rome (and elsewhere) about women make me think there's a long way to go. And we still need priests who speak with our voice.

  • Rev. Paul L. Vasquez - 3 years ago

    *that he can't imagine any other alternative than *the opposite" of the Catholic way of doing things.

  • Rev. Paul L. Vasquez - 3 years ago

    It amazes me that a site named after the Cross (crux) can so routinely go the easy way of merely accepting wholesale whatever the prevailing culture values without the critical examination required of everything in Christ. Even the wording of this poll is off, as at least one commentator has mentioned. I fully endorse Fr. Zulsdorf's intervention here, although that should not even be necessary. It appalls me that even one self-identified cleric is so misunderstanding of what genuine compassion is, that the best he can suggest after years of formation is that he can't imagine a different alternative than the Catholic way of doing things. Catholic clergy aren't ordained to give easy answers to the faithful, but what Christ says! That's rarely easy or popular.

  • Keith - 3 years ago

    Oh Phyllis, Phylis, Phyllis..... you do make me laugh.

    All a petition consisting of 7500 signatures demanding female ordination means.... is that 7500 people can't read and comprehend the following statement from Ordinatio Sacerdotalis:

    "Wherefore, in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church's divine constitution itself, in virtue of Our ministry of confirming the brethren. We declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church's faithful."

    Being able to read and comprehend this statement carrying the weight of Papal Infallability doesn't make me "angry", just bemused at the pointless waste of energy in starting the petition in the first place!

    If you want to be ministered to by women clergy there are a plethora of protetstant "Ecclesial Communities" which you can join. Please..... by all means, go and join them. And when you do, I'm sure that you'll find many dissident causes with which to add your voice, it's an obvious mindest of yours.

    @ Cristina: You may be right in one regard about Fr Z's formation (in Seminary at least) because having to endure the barking mad lunacy of the Sinsiniwa Domincans I doubt anyone''s formation could have withstood the cals to "live as the uber-Cosmos of the Nuesphere" or whatever they are spouting this week. That said, you owe the man and apology for a gross disservice as a lot of what you have written is very far from the truth. He has his opinions and a blog on which he voices them, there is no obligation to agree (only to stay on point if you disagree so arguing politlely the point not the man). He is under the jurisdiction of his Bishop and is incardinated to a diocese. It is not uncommon for a priest for many reasons to be granted faculties in a diocese to which he is not incardinated and to live and work with the agreement of his bishop(s).

    Everything he has written is in accordance with the teaching and disciplines of the Church. What he is not loyal to is the "Spirit of vatican 2", that loyalty which demands disobedience to authentic Catholicism.

  • Sue Sims - 3 years ago

    Zjohn: Luke's comment was intended as irony (I thought it was very successful).

    It's interesting that many commenters attack Fr. Z rather than trying to defend the indefensible. I'm not sure whether this is technically ad hominem: perhaps ad hominem in the second degree would work.

  • ZJohn - 3 years ago

    "The Nerve of those Zed-Heads. It merely emphasizes the point that polls and synods should be conducted in secret so as to better avoid unwanted responses."

    Who then would be polled? And wouldn't that defeat the purpose of a poll, if it were a secret matter among only a select few?

  • Jayne - 3 years ago

    I did find out about this poll from Fr. Z's blog. However, I decided to participate in it myself. I expressed my personal opinion, which is based on study and thought. I am not a mindless automaton, although I can understand why people who disagree with me might like to dismiss me as one.

  • Liesa - 3 years ago

    To understand the role of women, we can look to Our Lady. We should look not just at what her actual role was in her human life, but what she exhorts us to do in all her apparitions.

    Humility, prayer, service to Christ. She points the way TO Him.
    Mary, in her profound humility, serves those who are ordained "in persona Christi."

    To be Catholic is to accept that women have a sacred and unique part to play. Equality in the eyes of Our Lord does not mean "the same as men." That is a very dull and human way to look at the privileged role of women as servants of God.

  • Susan - 3 years ago

    Those who think Holy Church is holding back women because they cannot SERVE as priest or deacon clearly do not understand Jesus' message. His priests and deacons SERVE. It is not about power, but about obedience and powerlessness. Remember the washing of the feet? Jesus said He came not to be served but to serve. Same goes for His priests and deacons. What about service is power? Women have a much higher calling from God. To carry new life, to populate heaven with eternal souls! There is nothing more important. I have a dear friend in the diaconate program and his work requirements are very demanding, I don't know many women or men who have the stamina and time to undertake the program. His life has come to a complete halt to finish it. And priests with whom I am friendly do not have a life at all. Their entire lives have been given up for us, their flock. They minister to us throughout our lives: daily Mass, marriage, baptism, funerals, sick calls, confession, counseling, Viaticum. Giving up their time and lives so we can live ours. Those who want Holy Church to mirror society are NOT followers of Christ. We who want to stay true to our Lord and His Church need to heed the angel at Fatima: Penance! Penance! Penance! Laudetur Jesus Christus!

  • Didymus - 3 years ago

    It's a shame that anyone thinks that women require holy orders to be equal with men. It's close to misogyny, and seems to reduce the priesthood to a title with a power trip. If Our Lord and the Apostles thought women didn't need holy orders to be important, than neither do I.

  • Phyllis Zagano - 3 years ago

    There is a petition on Groundswell that the angry folks cannot touch: something like 7500 folks asking for women to be added again to the ordained diaconate:

  • Alana - 3 years ago

    Seems pretty conclusive that female deacons aren't needed or wanted.

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago

    David TImbs:

    Clearly you have no idea what you are talking about. Cite and reference the relevant points from the said document, which I have read, and nowhere does it say it is NOT sacramental! On the contrary, Pope Benedict wrote in 2008:

    Benedict XVI:]

    "Thank you for this testimony as one of the more than 100 deacons of Rome. I would like to also express my joy and my gratitude for the Council, because it revived this important ministry in the universal Church. I should say that when I was archbishop of Munich, I didn’t find perhaps more than three or four deacons, and I very much favored this ministry because it seemed to me to belong to the richness of the sacramental ministry in the Church.

    At the same time, it can equally be the link between the lay world, the professional world, and the world of the priestly ministry — given that many deacons continue carrying out their professions and maintain their positions — important or those of a simple life — while on Saturday and Sunday they work in the Church. In this way, you give witness in the world of today, as well as in the working world, of the presence of faith, of the sacramental ministry and the diaconal dimension of the sacrament of Orders. This seems very important to me: the visibility of the diaconal dimension."

    So, no, actually he clearly treats it as a sacramental order. Also, a Pope does not have power to change the nature of the sacraments, so even if he wanted to, he couldn't do it. Tradition cannot be modified for the sake of "Modern" man, who is supposedly a new type of man with new rights and needs...yeah, puh-lease.

    From the USCCB:

    "Who is a Deacon?
    A deacon is an ordained minister of the Catholic Church. There are three
    groups,or "orders," of ordained ministers in the Church: bishops,
    presbyters and deacons. Deacons are ordained as a sacramental sign to the
    Church and to the world of Christ,who came "to serve and not to be served."
    The entire Church is called by Christ to serve, and the deacon, in virtue
    of his sacramental ordination and through his various ministries,
    is to be a servant in a servant-Church.

    What are these "various ministries" of the Deacon?
    All ordained ministers in the Church are called to functions of Word,
    Sacrament,and Charity, but bishops, presbyters and deacons exercise these
    functions in various ways. As ministers of Word, deacons proclaim the
    Gospel, preach, and teach in the name of the Church. As ministers of
    Sacrament,deacons baptize,lead the faithful in prayer, witness marriages,
    and conduct wake and funeral services As ministers of Charity, deacons are
    leaders in identifying the needs of others, then marshaling the Church's
    resources to meet those needs. Deacons are also dedicated to eliminating
    the injustices or inequities that cause such needs. But no matter what
    specific functions a deacon performs, they flow from his sacramental
    identity. In other words, it is not only WHAT a deacon does,but WHO a
    deacon is,that is important."

    The Diaconate is part of the sacrament of Holy Orders that confirms an indelible character on the soul configuring him to Christ the Servant.

    Disagree???? Prove it. I am waiting.

  • Regina - 3 years ago

    David Timbs, you need to re-read that document. It does not even hint at what you claim it does. Furthermore, even Clux recognizes the sacramentality of the diaconate, hence their question "Should women be ordained as deacons?" Properly speaking, it should be "Can" not "Should", but then this is Clux so I'll make allowances.

  • Dave - 3 years ago

    The fact that this question is even being debated is completely ridiculous...

    It's not going to happen. Stop asking.

  • John Flaherty - 3 years ago

    "Priests seem to be able to get away with just about anything these days; there is no discipline at all. "

    Cristina, I thinik it exceedingly unlikely that you would like to see any bishop or any pope insist on enforcing the Church's discipline. If they would go that route, we would not have so many bishops or priests so determined to press on with an agenda that pretty clearly contradicts actual Church teaching. Were the Church as disciplined as you suggest, we would see many more priests with Fr Z's mentality. ...Which, incidentally, is why Fr Z's blog is so popular, because many of us have grown over-weary of the same old drivel from stubbornly liberal priests and bishops.
    I could wish that the Church exercised as much discipline as you say.
    There would not be difficulties like this; the faithful would've been better educated about the faith itself; there would be almost no market to serve.

  • John Flaherty - 3 years ago

    Mr. Timbs,
    I will strongly recommend that you re-read that motu proprio. I have it pulled up on the Vatican website; Benedict explicitly mentions the differences between the common priesthood of the faithful and the ministerial priesthood, then mentions the three different orders, categories if you like, of that ministerial priesthood. Later, when modifying the Code, he explicitly mentions how some of the faithful have been consecrated and deputed for service to the People of God.
    Nowhere does he mention anything about the possibility of ordaining women to the diaconate. Sex/gender does not come into play in the document at al.
    He does, however, explicitly tie the diaconate into the ministerial priesthood.

  • TJM - 3 years ago

    david thimbs, when you take on Father Z, you are truly out of your league. Go post your bilge on his website, and he will eviscerate you. nice try

  • JC - 3 years ago

    People complaining that Fr. Z sent people over here...if you had a liberal website with as many readers, they could do likewise.

  • David Timbs - 3 years ago

    The Pope is the supreme legislator in the Catholic Church. Pope Benedict treated the status of diaconate in Canonical terms and changed the law. Furthermore, the Pope is the supreme teacher of the Catholic Church and that magisterium cannot be contained or limited by the Catechism especially one which is now well and truly out of date.

    The Diaconate, Benedict makes quite unambiguously clear, is not part of the Sacrament of Holy Orders. It is a ministry of service. In fact, there is nothing that the 'ordained' male deacon is doing today that a grandmother is doing in many local churches and with episcopal delegation and commission. Not only will women's diaconate happen, it already has and will continue to happen. Before much longer this public non-Sacramental ministry will be open to women as well as men.

    All that needs to go is the clerical state its tied. The Pope has a pen and that's all it will take to abrogate another discipline.
    When that happens will deprive the entrepreneur Zuhlsdorf of another pretext for rabble rousing and more damaging of all, another source of income.

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago

    Catechism of the Catholic Church David: Right there:

    1570 Deacons share in Christ's mission and grace in a special way.55 The sacrament of Holy Orders marks them with an imprint ("character") which cannot be removed and which configures them to Christ, who made himself the "deacon" or servant of all.56 Among other tasks, it is the task of deacons to assist the bishop and priests in the celebration of the divine mysteries, above all the Eucharist, in the distribution of Holy Communion, in assisting at and blessing marriages, in the proclamation of the Gospel and preaching, in presiding over funerals, and in dedicating themselves to the various ministries of charity.

    The Deacon is Configured to Christ the Servant, sacramentally. The Priest is configured to Christ the High Priest. Women are not valid subjects for this ordination. Can't happen.

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago


    You're wrong.

    "Insofar as it is a grade of holy orders [sic], the diaconate imprints a character and communicates a specific sacramental grace. The diaconal character is the configurative and distinguishing sign, indelibly impressed in the soul, that configures the one ordained to Christ, who made himself the deacon—the servant—of all. It brings with it a specific sacramental grace: a gift for living the new reality wrought by the sacrament. With regard to deacons, "strengthened by sacramental grace they are dedicated to the People of God, in conjunction with the bishop and his body of priests, in the service (diakonia) of the liturgy, of the Gospel and of works of charity." Just as in all sacraments which imprint character, grace has a permanent virtuality. It flowers again and again in the same measure in which it is received and accepted again and again in faith.... The Church further teaches that: By a special sacramental gift, Holy Order confers on the deacon a particular participation in the consecration and mission of Him who became servant of the Father for the redemption of mankind, and inserts him in a new and specific way in the mystery of Christ, of his Church and the salvation of all mankind."

    Congregation for Clergy, Directory for the Ministry and Life of Permanent Deacons (Vatican City: Libraria Editrice Vaticane, 1998), nos. 7 and 46.

    You must be referring to this:

    "Those who are constituted in the order of the episcopate or the presbyterate receive the mission and capacity to act in the person of Christ the Head, whereas deacons are empowered to serve the People of God in the ministries of the liturgy, the word and charity".

    True the Deacon is NOT In Persona Christi Capitas. Nevertheless, he receives a sacramental Character in ordination. You could just use the Catholic Encyclopedia for that....

    "Although certain theologians such as Cajetan and Durandus, have ventured to doubt whether the Sacrament of Order is received by deacons, it may be said that the decrees of the Council of Trent are now generally held to have decided the point against them. The council not only lays down that order is truly and properly a sacrament but it forbids under anathema (Sess. XXIII, can. ii) that anyone should deny "that there are in the Church other orders both greater and minor as which as by certain steps advance is made to the priesthood", and it insists that the ordaining bishop does not vainly say "receive ye the Holy Ghost", but by that a character is imprinted by the rite of ordination. Now, not only do we find in the Acts of the Apostles, as noticed above, both prayer and the laying on of hands in the initiation of the Seven, but the same sacramental character suggestive of the imparting of the Holy Spirit is conspicuous in the ordination rite as practiced in the early Church and at the present day. "

    The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches clearly


    1554 "The divinely instituted ecclesiastical ministry is exercised in different degrees by those who even from ancient times have been called bishops, priests, and deacons."32 Catholic doctrine, expressed in the liturgy, the Magisterium, and the constant practice of the Church, recognizes that there are two degrees of ministerial participation in the priesthood of Christ: the episcopacy and the presbyterate . The diaconate is intended to help and serve them. For this reason the term sacerdos in current usage denotes bishops and priests but not deacons. Yet Catholic doctrine teaches that the degrees of priestly participation (episcopate and presbyterate) and the degree of service (diaconate) are all three conferred by a sacramental act called "ordination," that is, by the sacrament of Holy Orders:

    "Let everyone revere the deacons as Jesus Christ, the bishop as the image of the Father, and the presbyters as the senate of God and t

  • David Timbs - 3 years ago

    Congratulations Daniel Smith. You can cut and paste. Now try some old Scholastic logic: "Id quod gratis asseritur, gratis negatur."

    Back to the point: Pope Benedict XVI has taught quite clearly in his 2009 Motu proprio 'Omnium in Mentem' that Diaconate is not part of the sacrament of Holy Orders. There is no ordination, strictly speaking. No sacramental 'character' at Diaconate.
    The only restriction on the conferral of diaconal commissioning to preach, assist at the altar and to administer 'charity' is that it belongs to the clerical state. It is not a matter of unchangeable sacramental doctrine but Canon Law. What is in the way of the restoration of Diaconate to women is not Sacramental theology, it's discipline.
    Zuhlsdorf should know this. If he doesn't then he is incompetent and a lazy thinker. If he does, then he's dissembling and using 'diaconate' as an incendiary issue in order stir up the grovelers and to leverage even more funds to support his indolence and extravagant, gormandising feckless existence.

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago

    From the book "Liberalism is a Sin" endorsed by Rome in the 19th century:

    "The Liberal Catholic calls himself a (41) Catholic because he firmly believes Catholicity to be the veritable revelation of the Son of God; he calls himself a Liberal Catholic because he believes that no one can impose upon him any belief which his individual judgement does not measure as perfectly rational. What is not rational he rejects. He is intellectually free to accept or reject. What appears good he assents to, but he is intellectually bound to no one. Thus unwittingly he falls an easy victim to the snare set by the Devil for the intellectually proud. He has substituted the naturalistic principle of free examination for the supernatural principle of faith. As a consequence he is really not Christian, but pagan. He has no real supernatural faith, but only a simple human conviction. In the acceptance of the principle that the individual reason is thus free to believe or not to believe, Liberal Catholics are deluded into the notion that incredulity is a virtue rather than a vice. They fail to see in it an infirmity of the understanding, a voluntary blindness of the heart, and a consequent weakness of will. On the other hand they look upon the skeptical attitude as a legitimate condition wherein intellectual freedom is preserved, the skeptic remaining master of himself to believe or deny. They have a horror of any coercive element in matters of (42) faith; any chastisement of error shocks their tender susceptibilities, and they detest any Catholic legislation in the direction of what they are pleased to call intolerance. The Syllabus of Pius IX is a nightmare to them, a most inopportune, dominating, harsh and peremptory document, calculated to offend the sensibilities of the Protestant and modern world; it need not be accepted as an infallible utterance, and if accepted, must be taken in a very modified sense. The Ultramontane interpretation is violent and extreme, and does much more harm than good by driving back the well disposed at such a show of illiberality."

    Liberal Catholics: You literally have no faith because you reserve the right to "reason" not divine authority.

  • tjm - 3 years ago

    the fact that Father Z has thousands of readers should tell these lefties something - he has a message that resonates with faithful Catholics, which galls liberal minions like rosateresa. "Liberal" Catholicism is a spent force, consigned to the ashbins of history. The liberal highjacking of Vatican II was an unmitigated disaster at so many levels. Like the creators of the Edsel, you would think these "liberals" would develop some humility and introspection. Sadly they can't because they are inherently arrogant and lack true Christian charity. It's all about them

  • Cristina - 3 years ago

    I really find it abhorrent that the followers of Fr. Zuhlsdorf do his bidding with such unquestioning loyalty. This priest did not get the proper formation - something was obviously lacking in his RCIA formation and training. He lives and works as a total free agent, living thousands of miles and an ocean away from his bishop, having little to no communication with him, and most certainly not being supervised by ANY Catholic prelate. That is not how the Church operates and is not how it was established by Jesus Christ. Fr. Z operates as a Protestant, setting his own schedule, justifying his actions because of the current crisis in the Church - as Martin Luther did some centuries ago. Pride is the deadliest sin. OK, so "Fr. Z" is fluent in several languages and "brilliant" - we get it. He uses every opportunity to make others believe he has a superior intellect to the rest of us poor ignorant peons. When will someone in Rome call this wayward priest to task? This is not how Catholic priests are supposed to behave - to just take off and set up independent shop in any jurisdiction they please, and solicit funds from the lay faithful for who knows what purpose... Doesn't this guy have to at least give a financial accounting to someone???? Aren't there some rules about this??? He bans anyone who disagrees with him from making comments or giving their opinion. And Fr. Z supports wholeheartedly the schism of the Society of St. Pius X (the SSPX), openly supporting the SSPX at any chance he gets - he edited their Spanish/Latin Missile for them, thus doing work for this illicit, breakaway group. Fr. Zulsdorf even encouraged Catholic parents to send their young children to the schismatic schools run by the SSPX. He insisted that Catholics can meet their Sunday obligation at SSPX Masses, which of course they cannot do. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to vent. Maybe a faithful bishop will read this and decide to finally take action and reign Fr. John Zuhsdorf in, but I'm not holding my breath. Priests seem to be able to get away with just about anything these days; there is no discipline at all.

  • Baby Zingo - 3 years ago

    Perhaps the wives of the men in formation to the diaconate realize that 1) their husbands can't become deacons without their full participation and support, because said husbands will be required to spend more time away from home, serving the flock and ministering at Mass, and 2) given this fact, it only makes sense to deepen their own understanding of the diaconate and prepare to fully commit to filling in at home and in the community when their husbands are ministering as ordained deacons. And, 3) in every diocese I've lived in (several), men cannot be ordained to the diaconate unless their wives participate in the formation process. It's required. Perhaps the wives love their husbands enough and believe in their husbands' vocations enough to make this sacrifice.

    The military works this way, too, at least in the U. S. Commanding officers' spouses are invited to participate in a training program, as are the spouses of general and flag officers. It's a sacrifice to attend (the spouses aren't paid, and have to arrange for child care, time off work, pet sitting, etc.), but the training is structured so that the spouses 1) understand the big picture better; 2) understand what they can and cannot do as spouses of COs or flag/general officers; 3) form a support network amongst themselves so that when hard times come, they have people to talk with who really understand what's going on.

    So, no, just because wives of deacons are deeply spiritual and are committed to supporting our Church and their husbands' vocations does not mean they, the wives, should become deacons in their own right. The training is structured so that the deacons (men) have all possible support as they work in the world and also minister in the parish and diocese. Their wives gain understanding and deeper spirituality, and perhaps they create a support network, too - I don't know. My husband is in the military and thus can't stay in one place long enough to begin formation for the diaconate.

    Church teaching is clear. Holy Orders is a sacrament that only men can receive. All this dancing around the topic of women as deacons cannot change this fact.

  • Mary Fran - 3 years ago

    You say you are "covering all things Catholic". I thought this was a legitimate Catholic website. I was wrong. There is nothing Catholic about women being deacons.

  • David Timbs - 3 years ago

    Benedict XVI, in his 2009 Motu Proprio 'Omnium in Mentem' quite clearly distinguished the non-sacramental diaconate from the sacramental 'in persona Christi capitis' theology of priesthood.
    There is no strict 'ordination' to the diaconate but rather a commissioning of the person to the ministry of altar, Word and 'charity.'
    All it would take to re-admit women to diaconate in the Latin Church would be for the Pope to issue another Motu Proprio or decree removing the diaconate from the clerical state.

    And all it would take to remove the crassly materialistic and rapacious cleric, Zuhlsdorf, from his sine-cura in Madison, would be for his bishop in Villetri-Segni to recall him to take up a position he has never occupied, and that is pastoral ministry.

  • Larry Watkins - 3 years ago

    Written in the Holy Bible, as one of the qualifications for being a Deacon, is "the husband of but one wife." Now I don't see how a woman could possibly be a husband, so it seems to me that this question has been answered already and the answer is NO.

  • Regina - 3 years ago

    Look, I don't know how much clearer it can possibly be. The Sacraments were instituted by Christ, including ordination and marriage. Marriage is indissoluble and between one man and one woman. Adultery, fornication, and abortion are sins. Women cannot be ordained. This is all basic catechetics; little kids learn this stuff, or should. You said the Church is not God (please see my response). I say, *you* are not God. Stop trying to tell Him He doesn't know what He's doing because it's too hard to adhere to His commands and teachings and they make you unhappy. He doesn't obey us, we obey matter what the season. As I said earlier, the Episcopal ecclesial community is more than willing to accommodate those who don't agree with Him.

  • Stefanie - 3 years ago

    A minion from Father Z's blog reporting in here:
    In the very very early days of the Church, women deacons were useful to instruct women and children and to baptize them. At no time was a woman ever given the authority by Christ or the apostles to share in the priestly or apostolic ministry or to preach to the entire Church or to preach at Sunday Mass/worship. Was Jesus being mean to women by 'excluding' them ? Absolutely not. Jesus knows that women are natural nurturers and teachers in spiritual matters. He was very counter-cultural. Therefore, He knew what He was doing regarding NOT including women in priestly or deaconate ordination.

    And what does this have to do with the Family Synod? Nothing. Let the next Synod be about the Priesthood and the Diaconate.

  • Regina - 3 years ago

    Rosa, the Church is of God, it is His mystical body.

  • Rosateresa - 3 years ago

    The Church is not God.

  • Regina - 3 years ago

    God is immutable. His teachings do not change. Or "grow". They are as true today as they always were. Of course, you think you know better than He does as you seem to feel compelled to tell Him to get with the times and bow down to you and yours...and "grow".

  • Rosateresa - 3 years ago

    Susy, I read Fr. Z's blog too. He seems pretty worldly to me, soliciting money for trips, manipulating people's emotions, etc., and using the priesthood to do it. It is appalling. There are better ways to learn about the faith, real places for legitimate study that don't feed off people's lesser selves. Sending people over to vote in a poll is just silly. What difference does it make? What will happen will happen. Remember Catholics believe the Church will survive...most living things change and grow.

  • Stanislaus Kosala - 3 years ago

    Zuhlsdorf has noc respect or reverence for the priesthood, he just uses it as a tool to further his own hedonism. He should be in the dictioanry under simoniac.

  • Alfred - 3 years ago

    Its amazing that Zuhlsdorf could take time out of his busy schedule soliciting donations for his frequent vacations and taking photos of send people to inlfate this poll. This site should be flattered.

  • Joe - 3 years ago

    Fr. Guns-n-Ammo Z has been sending his trolls over here to skew the results....

  • Regina - 3 years ago

    Oh, that was just brilliant, Luke! In the future, be sure to poll only those who think exactly like you do thereby eliminating all those pesky unwanted votes that are in favor of upholding the teachings of Christ. As for rosateresa, et al, I could never understand why Catholics who don't like Catholic teaching, i.e. that of Christ and the Apostles, bother remaining in the Church. From what I understand, there's a nice Episcopal church down the street ready to welcome you with open arms. They change with the wind just the way you do. A match made in heaven right on your doorstep! Hurry along now! Oh, and btw, I'm not a...what was it you called them..."minion" of Fr. Z, but if you don't like him, I'm seriously considering becoming one. He must be an orthodox Christian, faithful to the Lord.

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago

    Jim Foody:

    Just say you think Thomistic theology is a waste of time. Pope Pius XI is not amused...

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago

    Percy, do you have an objection to Catholics who adhere to Catholic teaching?

  • Percy - 3 years ago


    Hardly. These aren't polls, properly speaking. They are click-bait. Thousands of Zed-heads just gave clicks to Crux, so I am sure it's quite happy with anything that sends clicks its way. It's a symbiotic relationship. I just thought I'd close the circle on it by mentioning it, that's all.

  • acricketchirps - 3 years ago

    Susy, speak for yourself. I'm a minion.
    Luke, I think you're being slyly ironical (heh).

  • Luke - 3 years ago

    The Nerve of those Zed-Heads. It merely emphasizes the point that polls and synods should be conducted in secret so as to better avoid unwanted responses.

  • Percy - 3 years ago

    The amplification of No here is coming from Fr Zuhldorf's blog (he has several thousand readers, and regularly directs them to poll-pump)

  • Stu - 3 years ago

    Poorly worded question.

    Women cannot receive Holy Orders.

  • Marie - 3 years ago

    Listen, what could be more awesome and mind-boggling than conceiving a human life in collaboration with God, which He then endows with an immortal soul; and then carrying, nurturing and bearing that child with an immortal soul beneath one's heart for 9 months, and then bringing that immortal life - which will exist for an eternity - into this world so that it may accomplish the Divine Will?

    Men can't do THAT. Do you hear them whining about why God only lets women bring human life into the world??

    I, who wrote this, am a woman. I don't see any problem with not being a candidate for ordination, although - like Saint Therese - it's a vocation I deeply admire.

  • Susy - 3 years ago

    Rosateresa, just because we read Father Z's blog, in no way means we are his "minions." We are your fellow Catholics. We read his blog because he is a good and faithful priest of our Lord. We make an effort to learn and follow the Magisterium of the Church, and remain faithful to it. I also read Crux and there is no reason not to vote in its polls. The Church needs its laity more than ever to stand up against compromises with the World. We know who IT's ruler is.

  • Daniel Smith - 3 years ago

    In the entire history of the Church women were never ordained deacons. They were consecrated in some places as deaconesses, but they were to assist in the baptism of female converts. They never had a liturgical function and never served at the altar. The TRUE church of Christ had never known of such a role for women. Notwithstanding the attempts of some schismatics and heretical churches of the east to simultaneously rouse this same issue.

    The calling of women does not extend to the ordained ministry, and the willingness of so many women to imagine it does shows simply that they are not humble and docile to the church's teaching and constant practice. What does God ask of us? To "do justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly" with him. Women who are attempting to promote a feminist agenda in the church need to realize, they are in danger of hell. Not because they challenge "The patriarchal mispgynists" but because they fight the manifest will of God down through the ages. God does not change and modern man is not a special new type of human with new rights and privileges.

    Women in the church: you will only know peace if you joyfully and docile submit your heart and mind to the vocation entrusted to you by Christ. Do not waste time pining for what you cannot have. The results are more often than not, catastrophic.

  • J. B. Felsen - 3 years ago

    Mark - the "local Wiccan bonfire?" I'm pretty sure the Catholic Church has been here long before Gerald Gardner and Doreen Valiente. In fact, the Catholic Church has been here long before you and I, and it will definitely be here long after you and I have ceased to exist.

  • Rosateresa - 3 years ago

    LOL, Fr. Z has sent his minions over here on an action item to vote in this pole. Words of Jesus: "Women are not the proper matter, just like pepperoni pizza...." Does any person really even think like this anymore?

  • Lee Gilbert - 3 years ago

    Unlike many other Christian denominations, we are not making up our ecclesiology as we go along. We have definite God-given parameters. In the case of whether women can be deacons, Scripture is very clear: "Let the deacons be the husband of one wife . . ." (1 Timothy 3: 12).

  • Linda Cooper - 3 years ago

    I don't understand why some women think that becoming a Deacon or Priest will give them instant equality. I do not feel inferior to our Deacons. I'm not inferior because I'm not eligible to be a Priest or Deacon. I have so many ministries at my parish; I'm not belittled, I'm not doing some inferior job. I can't be "in-persona Christi. that doesn't make me inferior.

  • Mark - 3 years ago

    The church will gradually become irrelevant. Women deacons, male deacons, who cares.

    This synod will show the church has nothing to offer over the local Wiccan bonfire. People will leave for it has no moral authority and therefore no relevance to this new, modern age.

    So dont make up some new type of preistess to try and make yourself relevant. Just go away and die!

  • James D Rooney - 3 years ago

    I find the question tendentious.

    Early deaconesses were not, by what I'd say is the most clear historical evidence (and, yes, I know the sources), sacramentally ordained as equivalents to deacons. I am personally in favor of restoring the "minor order" of the deaconess, but that is very distinct from posing this poll, as if one could ordain them as equivalent sacramental orders.

    But the whole format is inappropriate: if there is a sacramental-dogmatic question, in this case the possibility of ordination of women to the diaconate (assuming we mean the major order), is a poll the best way to determine it? Assuming prior magisterial teaching doesn't answer this question (and I am fairly certain it addresses the female diaconate indirectly), the whole debate is not the desirability of changing canon law, but of whether it is POSSIBLE to do so VALIDLY. If it were theologically impossible, then even if we wanted to, even if 100% of the Catholic population desired it, we just couldn't create any female deacons. No matter how much laying on of hands was done or vestments made, it doesn't happen. Just like taking milk and cookies and saying a whole Eucharistic prayer with consummate attention and intention to consecrate does not a Eucharist make.

    Consider using a poll to determine some other issue in sacramental theology, like looking back at the validity of the canon of Addai and Mari (an ancient Eucharistic Prayer which lacked a clear institution narrative in the current textual form). Would it have made much theological sense to take a poll, asking whether we should use that prayer in daily Mass? It makes no sense.

  • Mike - 3 years ago

    Much of this debate stems from a false sense of equality that doesn't respect the inherent dignity of God's creation in its various forms. The forms of men and women are different, yet they have equal dignity. You cannot nullify the difference in forms without robbing each of its dignity. "Empowering" women by neglecting the differences between the masculine and feminine forms is hilariously counterproductive.

  • Fanatic Catholic - 3 years ago


    The whole point that you seem to be missing is that the Church's not allowing women to become deacons (or priests for that matter) has nothing to do with their ability, or with their diligence and love for the Catholic Faith. No one is questioning that women are perfectly capable of loving and serving the Church as well or better than men do (Why else would there be women's religious orders?). Furthermore, it seems that if you really believe that there were women deacons in the Church at one time, you really have to deny the whole notion of the infallible teaching of the Pope and the Magisterium of the Church, and it's founding in Scared Tradition.

    I know it's totally unfashionable to say this nowadays, but the fact of the matter is that God did create men and women for different roles, and he intends for men to take on roles of leadership more than women do. I know this may hurt people's feelings, but it is the consistent and traditional teaching of the Church and the saints for hundreds of years back. If someone's feelings are hurt because they don't think the role God designed them to play is good enough for them, that's not the Church's fault. Like it or not, the job of the Church is to adhere to God's truth, and to teach and promote it. And I'm sure that's not going to make most people very happy.

  • Lurker #59 - 3 years ago

    One cannot confer what one does not possess. Women cannot be ordained “deacons” (sic) because the Church possesses neither the authority nor the capacity to do such. The very question itself belies a grave misunderstanding of the constitution of the Church. The Church cannot do things simply because people prefer the Church to do such things. The ministers of the Church are to do that which the Lord commands and nothing else. So the question must be, “Did the Lord command that the Church ordain women as deacons?” One must look to the will of Christ, not the will of the members of the Mystical Body of Christ.

    Historically there were what we could label as women deaconesses, but they were not ordained, and there were some very good reasons why the practice stopped. If we are going to go down the path of “let us do what the early Church did”, without paying attention to the whys and why nots, perhaps we should pay attention to how deacons in the early Church were to live – celibate.

    If perhaps it seems that the wives of those to be ordained to the deaconate are paying more attention / taking things more seriously, this it not an indication of the suitability of the woman but more so the unsuitability of the men for ordination.

    We MUST look for what Christ wills not what our own intellect or sentiment wills.

  • Xopher - 3 years ago

    There may have been women called "deaconesses", but whether there were women ordained with the same authority as the men called Deacons is debatable. However, this misses the point of the current movement. The modern deaconess movement is not about deacon-hood, but about trying to wedge open the door to priestesses. Therefore, the possible past existence of such a role for women is irrelevant, as it would be disastrously imprudent to institute such a role at this time.

  • Disco - 3 years ago

    Of course women shouldn't be deacons. People who talk of barriers and sexism just don't get it. The Church is based on sacred scripture and sacred tradition, not the latest fad in gender ideology. Holy Orders is a sacrament and, like any other sacrament, it requires proper matter, form, and intent. Women are not proper matter for the sacrament of Holy Orders any more than a pepperoni pizza and bud light are proper matter for the holy eucharist.

  • Jim Foody - 3 years ago

    I am a deacon myself. In my formation, I saw wives who were as much or more focused on training as their husbands. Diaconate is a call to service. It is inconceivable to me that we can raise a barrier to women to serve this ministry in the special way that ordination confers. Moreover, denying that there were women deacons on the early church requires intellectual contortions that challenge medieval neo-Aristotelians.

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