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Two contrasting Perceptions of Women in the Catholic Church of Australia

Two contrasting Perceptions of Women in the Catholic Church of Australia

from Woman and Man: One in Christ Jesus

Report on the Participation of Women
in the Catholic Church in Australia.

Published by Harper Collins Relgious, 1999, pp. 392.

Those who show satisfaction with the current role of women in the church

Those who seek to expand the current role of women in the church.

Seek maintenance of the status quo or a return to traditional teachings, piety and values

Call for renewal based on the vision of Jesus and the Gospels

Stress obedience to the Pope and the hierarchical Church

Desire to see the spirit and vision of the Second Vatican Council implemented with emphasis on the Church as the People of God

Refer to Church documents, especially the Catechism of the Catholic Church

Refer to Scripture and the early Church

Emphasise authority and doctrine

Stress the need to consider contemporary biblical and theological scholarship

Are concerned that tolerance undermines truth

Value diversity in unity and the breakdown of discrimination

Highlight the traditional role of women as wives and mothers, and in consecrated life

Highlight the increasingly varied contribution of women to society and to the Church

Are concerned that men and boys are not sufficiently present and active in the Church

Display feelings of pain and alienation concerning the limitations on the role of women in the Church

Emphasise concerns about worldly influences, involving secular pressures, consumerism and the secular culture

Experience as a scandal that the wider society is leading the way concerning the equality of women

See the Church as being in conflict with a hostile world

Lament the failure of the institutional Church to read the "signs of the times" concerning the equality of women

Express concerns regarding the lack of Catholic ethos and sound teaching in Catholic education

Identify the value of the large group of theologically educated women in Australia

Perceive that women seeking ordination seek power and status

Perceive that women seeking ordination wish to be of service to the Church

Believe that feminism is incompatible with Church teaching

Value moderate feminism

Are comfortable with exclusive social language and religious

Call for the use of inclusive religious language and imagery and inclusive social language

For other findings see:

  1. Selected Excerpts
  2. Patriarchal and Hierarchical Nature of the Church Seen as the Fundamental Barrier to Women's Participation
  3. Dominant Common Characteristics of Perceptions Concerning the Participation of Women in the Church

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