If you’ve heard that being a feminist is anti-Catholic, think again.
In today’s world, being a Catholic can be controversial. Especially when it comes to women’s rights.
Feminism has a history of advocating for things that the Catholic Church contends with, whether it be outright support of abortion, or just the connotation that mothering isn’t valuable work.
So it’s not uncommon for a Catholic to cringe at the word “feminist.”
But in 1995, St. Pope John Paul II actually issued a call for women to rise up in the name of feminism – a call for a “new feminism.”
And if feminism is good enough for a Pope who’s also now a canonized saint, well, it’s good enough for me.
Here’s three good reasons Catholics should be proud to sport the (new) feminist label:
I recently re-verted to my faith, and am struggling because I feel like every single thing I read about women in Catholicism has to do with motherhood.
I love my mom friends, and they are awesome, but I’m single right now, and not sure I even ever want to have kids.
Honestly, I’m just not very maternal. A lot of my friends just love babies, and are great with them. I think babies are cute, but personally, I just don’t have this longing to be a mom that some of my friends have.
Which is good, because I really don’t know if I’m patient enough to deal with little kids day in and day out.
I’ve not one of these girls that daydreams about decorating a nursery or being pregnant.
I have a Masters and a job I love and I feel like the Church should focus more on all the things women can do in the world, and how they can be leaders.
And isn’t that what feminism is supposed to be about, anyway? Celebrating women for more than just making babies?
Responses to this question will be accepted until Aug. 31, 2017.
Want to respond? Or have a question of your own?
See the Dear Edith page for more info.
When I first read the “anti-diversity” memo from a (now former) Google employee, I just tweeted a little and wanted to move on. However, as a female in a STEM field, I’ve been feeling pulled to talk about it.
I was actually ⅔ of the way done writing a defense of the memo (while acknowledging some of the flaws), but it just didn’t feel like the right direction. There are plenty of arguments on both sides – either claiming it is a hugely sexist piece, or people praising him as a martyr for conservative thought – neither of which is really an accurate analysis.
I don’t want to talk about the pros and cons of his memo in this post (although we can certainly discuss it if you’d like). Instead, I want to discuss an aspect of the memo that triggered a lot of outrage: the idea that men and women are different.
Read the original question here.
I totally understand how you feel.
I always saw myself as the “working woman” and figured I’d follow in my mom’s footsteps. She worked full time my whole life, attended all the school things, and was/is a great mother. I never felt as if she didn’t love me or my siblings.
When my first baby came along, I was fresh out of college and I felt my talents and gifts were wasting away. I struggled so much with staying home, yet I felt guilty for feeling that way.
Imagine a think tank for Catholicism + Feminism.
You know that Catholic friend of yours who won’t stop talking about women’s empowerment?
I need her.
Or maybe, that strong woman is you.
Can you stay awhile? Let’s chat.
The all-male Catholic priesthood is an issue I know doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense to a lot of people, and I completely understand, having been there myself. Still, I find it really tragic that more people aren’t talking about this question of women and the priesthood – especially Catholics. The Catholic faith is really amazing in that, no matter how much you explore and learn, you can always go deeper. So in a certain sense, there are things that we accept without understanding. But we’re also thinking human beings, and questioning what we don’t understand can lead to a greater depth of faith.
When I was little, I remember asking my mother, “Why can’t girls be priests?”
To which she replied, “Do you want to be a priest?”
I didn’t, so that was that. I’m not sure I bought that entirely, but it was enough for the moment. As I got older, it seemed to make more sense to me. We call a priest “Father”, priests are spiritual fathers, women can’t be fathers. Done and done. And then, roughly a year ago, it struck me.
Why do they have to be fathers?
So I asked questions. I texted my cousin. I emailed a couple of my aunts. I cornered a friend at midnight and asked questions… and more questions. And then I researched. Now here I am, almost exactly a year later, and I’m ok with women not being priests. More than that, I think it’s fantastic.