Home › Forums › All Things Catholic › American Catholics want change? › Reply To: American Catholics want change?
[quote:33dr1ckg]Women can be servers and in the early Church they were Deaconesses.[/quote:33dr1ckg]
I found the following at [url:33dr1ckg]http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/1996/9601fea3.asp[/url:33dr1ckg]
Here let me paste the relevant section:
[b:33dr1ckg]Proposition:[/b:33dr1ckg] [i:33dr1ckg]”Historically there is evidence of female ordination in the early Church, as seen in the gnostic sects that were discredited by the so-called ‘orthodox’ groups.” [/i:33dr1ckg]
It is certainly true that some early gnostic (meaning “special knowledge”) groups favored a more active role for women. Feminist theologians such as Rosemary Radford Ruether point to these groups and proclaim that they offered women greater status before “patriarchal” orthodoxy discredited the gnostic believers.
But two important points must be noted. First, the questionable beliefs of gnostic groups also included dangerous Christological errors (such as a “Jesus” who never had a physical body. Second, while Ruether points to gnostic texts which seem to support feminist causes, she ignores other gnostic texts which state that “women are not worthy of life” and “must become male” in order to reach heaven (the Gospel of Thomas). Overall, the gnostic texts are recognized as a mixed bag of speculative theological teachings and damaging heresies, the latter being rooted out by early Church leaders.