Skip to comments.Woman Ordained As Priest Denied Catholic Burial
Posted on 05/20/2010 6:04:23 AM PDT by NYer
There are tough questions for the Archdiocese of Chicago after it denied a lifelong Roman Catholic a church funeral. CBS 2 Chief Correspondent Jay Levine reports with the story of a battle a cancer victim fought until her dying breath.
The priesthood of the Roman Catholic Church is the world's oldest all-boys club. Women need not apply. No debate. No appeal. Protest at your own risk. Which is exactly what Janine Denomme did.
Janine was 45 when she died, after a year-long battle with cancer, on Monday. She was a devoted parishioner at St. Gertrude's Roman Catholic Church on Chicago's North Side, attended by many members of the gay and lesbian community.
CBS 2 talked to her last fall, about a new book Cardinal George had written, and his comments about sexual orientation.
"Using sexual orientation in the same line as moral failings does not make me feel welcome," said Denomme back then.
Though it wasn't the debate over sexual preference, but her campaign for women in the priesthood, that was the final straw.
Last month, Janine was ordained in a simulation, according to the Archdiocese, which carries an automatic penalty.
"Any woman who seeks ordination incurs excommunication," said Fr. Daniel Smilanic.
Archdiocese Canon lawyer Smilanic said the Cardinal had no choice. Janine knew that when she took her vows a month before she died.
Her longtime partner, Nancy Katz, said that Janine was also aware that she risked being denied a formal church funeral.
"I don't think she believed the church would lack a pastoral sensibility," said Katz. "And what she said to me as we talked about her funeral wishes, 'I can't imagine having my funeral anywhere but my parish.' And yet she knew that there was a risk involved with heeding her call for ordination."
How does it hurt the church to say, she made a mistake, but she was our lifelong daughter, let her be buried in the church as she wanted?
"We have to understand what the theology is," Smilanic said. "The Holy See has said that if people do this, they are automatically excommunicated. And the excommunication is reserved to the Holy See."
Translation: orders from Rome. Instant excommunication. Decreed by the same authority which takes years to excommunicate priests who abuse children.
Janine's funeral mass will be held Saturday at a Methodist church in Evanston; though many of St. Gertrude's parishioners, perhaps even its priests, are expected to attend.
A lesson ~ if you want to be a Protestant, go to a Protestant church. We don’t bite. Still, you need to be careful to pick one with an “open burial” policy eh!
>>”Any woman who seeks ordination incurs excommunication,” said Fr. Daniel Smilanic. <<
Well she wasn’t really Catholic, now was she?
I can call myself a gorilla, that doesn’t make me a gorilla.
Devoted to what? not to her religion, apparently.
I don't agree with Catholic doctrines in some cases, but they have the absolute right to operate their church as they see fit. If someone doesn't like how they do it, they don't have to be a Catholic.
Not true. She automatically excommunicated herself when she set herself up in Holy Orders.
The same way people hurt themselves when they jump off bridges: just as certain, just as automatic.
A “simulated” ordination is not real. Jesus only chose men as his Apostles. Unless Jesus was wrong. Which I suspect, is what people like her are trying to prove.
>>Any woman who seeks ordination incurs excommunication, said Fr. Daniel Smilanic. <<
This statement bugged me — it may be true that any woman who seeks ordination is excommunicated, but it is equally true that any man who seeks ordination in a simulation is excommunicated. I really wish he didn’t just hang it on being a woman seeking ordination. The problem is not only that she’s a woman who wanted to be ordained - there are a lot of Catholic women who could say that — the problem is that she WAS “ordained” in a simulation, which is excommunicable for both men and women.
Chicago’s North Side...
She can rant to St.Peter now.
Last month, Janine was ordained in a simulation, according to the Archdiocese, which carries an automatic penalty.While the prayers of the faithful may have saved her somehow, or she may have said she was sorry with her last breaths, still and all, the powers of the devil are frightening indeed. He pounded away even (or especially!) when she only had days to live ...
I don’t know that people are trying to prove Jesus wrong by female ordination — I’m not a proponent of female ordination, but Jewish society at the time wouldn’t have been able to handle female rabbis, which was what Jesus’ Apostles were somewhat akin to. Plus, more and more we’re learning that women had a much bigger role in the early non-institutionalized Church than they do now and were slowly pushed aside as institutionalization occurred. We know that at the very least there were female deacons.
The condescending, accusatory tone of this article is repugnant. Using a woman’s death as yet another opportunity to bash the Church? Well, whatever it takes. And of course, she and her “partner” had planned it that way... going out with big drama, what fun! Wonder what she thinks of that silly gesture right about now?
‘Poser’ exactly. She had CHOSEN to leave the Church and its teachings. This is not a hankie-moment, but rather the hard edge of reality rearing its ugly head. Choices have consequences.
A nun once told me that women have a MUCH bigger role than Priests in the Church. That is to raise good Catholic children.
Afterall who ya gonna listen to? A Priest or your Mom?
I hear the Roman Catholics also have a big down on burying Satanists, Muslims, Pagans, Zoroastrians, Hindus, Animists, Atheists, animals, and a whole bunch of other non-Roman Catholics in consecrated Roman Catholic cemeteries. How mean and unfair of them.
But sarcasm aside, while much has been written in church doctrine about death bed conversion, there is little about death bed renunciation, I suppose because the church doesn’t want to slam the door on any variety of possible redemption. This is rather unfortunate, in that while someone who despises the church might eventually be provided some form or means of redemption, there would seem to be no harm in assuming that they got what was coming to them.
The writer waits until nearly 2/3 of the way through the article before it's revealed that Janine is a lesbian. Lesson learned = you can be a "longtime" lesbian and still get a "church funeral", but once you try to become a priest, you lose.
THe "ordained" should be in quotes.
She abused a Sacrament; she knew it; the excommunication could have ben lifted by confession, if the Pope so authorized. Only God knows whether in hr final moments she repented; so all we can do is pray for her soul, poor woman.
In my opinion (and only my opinion, dearies) every single Bishop who refuses to carry out Canon 915, should be excommunicated for sacrilege against the Eucharist. That's the Canon that says unrepentant people guilty of manifest grave sin (e.g. Catholic politicians voting for abortion or target=city bombing or gay marriage or torture or the like) MUST (the law says "must") be denied Holy Communion.
But the bishops themselves are openly disobedient.
Yet the times have often favored a female priesthood and never more so than when Christ ordained his first priests, nearly 2,000 years ago. Virtually all the pagan religions of his day had priestesses, and it would have been entirely normal and natural for him to choose women for this task. He had, moreover, a number of excellent potential candidates, from his own Mother, who accompanied him at his first miracle and stood with him as he suffered on the cross, to Mary Magdalene or the women of Bethany. Instead, he chose only men, and he remained immovable on this, continuing right to the end to exhort and train them all, leaving thus a Church which turned out to be safely founded on a rock. From those twelve men a direct line of apostolic succession has given the Catholic Church the bishops and priests it has today.
WOMEN PRIESTS: NO CHANCE
Dang, is this is a column....very biased reporting if supposed to be a straight news story.
This story screams “sweeps month” ratings grabber.
I’m not Catholic and don’t exactly agree with much of the theology, but this is ridiculous. She was not lawfully ordained and therefore does not deserve a Catholic burial. If this results in automatic excommunication (unfortunately it doesn’t in Protestant churches...), she is no longer Christian and therefore should not get treated as such.
There’s a heck of a lot of things Jews weren’t comfortable with, such as eating “unclean” meat etc.
This is one reason why I do not buy the “cultural” argument when it comes to female ordination to pastorship.
Christ upsets the apple cart of the Jews throughout Scripture in very fundamental ways. He wasn’t exactly afraid to do so and would have done so if he believed women could be ordained as pastors.
Christ did respect the women in his church very much. He chose women to tell the news of his Resurrection. I used to attend the Reformed Presbyterian Church, a very conservative denomination that is one of the few smaller branches of Presbyterianism that has women deacons. I have come to the conclusion that deaconesses are Biblical.
Now, I am in the Presbyterian Church in America, which doesn’t because honestly I think they are scared of trending toward the mainline PCUSA that is having the fights over gay ministers and already ordain women as pastors. However, the PCA did study it recently and decided to keep things the way they are now with only men deacons. I disagree, but they did a solid Biblical study and tried to look at the issue.
Anyway, the point is....I do think women can be deacons in the sense of Biblical deacons....those that help the sick, comfort and do those sorts of ministry actions. NOT the “deacons” of the Baptist church that really are elders in the Biblical sense.
That service has traditionally been served by religius women who are trained as nurses, health care aides, hospice workers, teachers, etc.
Mortal sin (gravely wrong action, freely and knowingly done) is not the same as excommunication. Homosexual acts are mortal sins, as is, for instance, "rash judgment." If unrepented, acts of distorted sex, acts of distorted judgment, and any other grave sin, can lead to the soul's eternal woe.
But there are seven actions which result in automatic excommunication (latae sentenciae) under the present Canon Law --- which does not, as I say, mean simply mortal sin. Those actions are:
Why are these automatically excommunicatable? Not because they are "uniquely" sinful, but usually because the person who commits them is deemed to need an especially solemn warning about the gravity of what they've done. Typically because in these sins the person is seriously self-deluded and urgently needs good spiritual counsel.
So excommunication is what's known as a "medicinal" penalty. The point of such penalties is to move the sinner to repentance. It does not mean you are damned. There are several canonized saint (the two that come to mind are St. Joan of Arc and St. Hildegard of Bingen) who was under an unjust sentence of excommunication when they died--obviously the matter was review after their deaths, and they were found not only "not guilty," but very virtuous.
Looking at her picture told me all I needed to know about her sexual lifestyle.
I was frankly surprised, Mr. Levine, upon RE-reading the sad article about the death of Janine Denomme, that you designate yourself a "reporter" on this one. You ought to have called this an Op/Ed. and yourself a "commentator."
From the very headline --- "Woman Ordained as Priest" --- you are not reporting straight facts. Janine Denomme was not ordained. She set herself up for an attempted ordination, or a simulated ordination, or an enactment of an ordination, but she was not "ordained," any more than I could have my friends give me a great statuette of a football player and then call myself a Heisman Trophy winner.
And from your first line --- "There are tough questions for the Archdioces of Chicago" --- you are communicating opinion here, and not facts.
That ought to have been clarified, Mr. Levine.
I feel sorry for this woman, who must have had many attractive qualities. I have prayed for her, because there was apparently a lot she didn't understand.
This applies to you as well. As it does to us all, limited as we are: but God alone knows everything, and is merciful.
But the bishops themselves are openly disobedient.
You're not alone - I share your opinion.
Canon 915 - Those upon whom the penalty of excommunication or interdict has been imposed or declared, and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to holy communion.
Sadly, Archbishop Chaput has indicated that it is the responsibility of the communicant to stay away from the Communion Rail. This is not correct. Rather, it is the responsibility of the Minister of the Eucharist to deny Holy Communion. This is a huge difference that goes against the Church's teachings regarding canon 915 as well as recent statements from the Vatican stating that the manifest pro-abortion politicians must be denied, and the burden IS upon the Minister to deny, NOT upon the communicant to stay away
. -- from the thread Will Denver Catholic Archbishop finally enforce Canon 915?
"An archbishop who says nothing about these sacrilegious Communions is teaching his diocese that being pro-abortion is not sinful. By flouting Canon 915, he is also teaching his diocese that obedience to Canon Law is optional."A reflection on canon 915
-- FReeper Arthur McGowan, September 17, 2009
“Tough questions”? Let’s see self proclaimed woman priest. Apparent active lesbian. What ‘tough questions’? It’s the Roman Catholic Church., not the Episcopalians. She excommunicated herself by her ‘ordination’. She did not repent. She cast herself out.
I totally endorse the Church and its actions. Now if they would be just as vocal in not allowing politicians who are pro abortion from having Catholic burials (Ted Kennedy pops into my mind)then I will have tons more respect for their decision.
Kennedy and other politicians of like mind and heart excommunicate themselves by their actions.
I think this needs to be upgraded from barf alert to steaming pile warning.
That being said I do hope the woman repented of her sins and was reconciled to Christ.
In other words, she was counting on there being a soft-hearted priest somewhere who would go against Catholic teaching, and give her a Catholic burial, even after she'd been excommunicated.
She was making her own rules, in the church she'd created in her mind, as the one SHE thought would be 'just'. Too bad she didn't consider sinfulness and pride when she was considering 'justice'. Those are the things that she used to reject the Church with regards to ordination, and God's natural law with regards to her choice of sexual orientation.
The women who were 'deacons' in the early Church didn't perform the same ministerial roles that either Permanent or Transitional Deacons perform nowadays.
These days, women are heavily involved in their Parishes in activities such as religious education, nursing, hospitality, bereavement, etc. These are the same functions those women who served as 'deacons' in early Church performed, and those in which women have been involved throughout the history of the Church.
You, me, and Arthur --- The Canonical Gang of Three! Let's take as our Patron Saint my favorite missionary Archbishop, Inquisitor, and scourge of the corrupt clergy, Abp. Toribio (also called St. Turibius of Mongrovejo.)
Think I'm kidding?
In what way was this woman a Catholic?
Boy, the article is really biased!
Was that a reply to me? It does not seem to pertain. And if Jesus was wrong then there is no Religion and no Church only some colossal playacting.
That's the parish she was the pastor of, right? Didn't they give her a nice one?
I wholeheartedly agree with the Catholic Church’s right to make it’s own rules. If this lady wanted to be ordained she could have joined multiple other denominations.
That being said, I am not as familiar with the Bible as I should be, could someone direct me to the passages from which the Catholics developed their dogma on male priests.
At the beginning of the books of Acts when he came to them in the upper room and breathed on them. We only see God "Breathing on some one twice. In Genesis, when he gave Adam life and in the Book of Acts with the Apostles.
You will find the most detailed explanation here.
And here are some scriptural passages that address the topic of women in the priesthood.
Gen. 3:15; Luke 1:26-55; John 19:26; Rev. 12:1- Mary is God's greatest creation, was the closest person to Jesus, and yet Jesus did not choose her to become a priest. God chose only men to be priests to reflect the complimentarity of the sexes. Just as the man (the royal priest) gives natural life to the woman in the marital covenant, the ministerial priest gives supernatural life in the New Covenant sacraments.
Judges 17:10; 18:19 fatherhood and priesthood are synonymous terms. Micah says, Stay with me, and be to me a father and a priest. Fathers/priests give life, and mothers receive and nurture life. This reflects God our Father who gives the life of grace through the Priesthood of His Divine Son, and Mother Church who receives the life of grace and nourishes her children. In summary, women cannot be priests because women cannot be fathers.
Mark 16:9; Luke 7: 37-50; John 8:3-11 - Jesus allowed women to uniquely join in His mission, exalting them above cultural norms. His decision not to ordain women had nothing to do with culture. The Gospel writers are also clear that women participated in Jesus' ministry and, unlike men, never betrayed Jesus. Women have always been held with the highest regard in the Church (e.g., the Church's greatest saint and model of faith is a woman; the Church's constant teaching on the dignity of motherhood; the Church's understanding of humanity as being the Bride united to Christ, etc.).
Mark 14:17,20; Luke 22:14 - the language "the twelve" and "apostles" shows Jesus commissioned the Eucharistic priesthood by giving holy orders only to men.
Gen. 14:10; Heb. 5:6,10; 6:20; 7:15,17 - Jesus, the Son of God, is both priest and King after the priest-king Melchizedek. Jesus' priesthood embodies both Kingship and Sonship.
Gen. 22:9-13 - as foreshadowed, God chose our redemption to be secured by the sacrificial love that the Son gives to the Father.
Matt. 26:26; Mark 14:22; Luke 22:19 - because the priest acts in persona Christi in the offering to the Father, the priest cannot be a woman.
Mark 3:13 - Jesus selected the apostles "as He desired," according to His will, and not according to the demands of His culture. Because Jesus acted according to His will which was perfectly united to that of the Father, one cannot criticize Jesus' selection of men to be His priests without criticizing God.
John 20:22 - Jesus only breathed on the male apostles, the first bishops, giving them the authority to forgive and retain sins. In fact, the male priesthood of Christianity was a distinction from the priestesses of paganism that existed during these times. A female priesthood would be a reversion to non-Christian practices. The sacred tradition of a male priesthood has existed uncompromised in the Church for 2,000 years.
1 Cor. 14:34-35 - Paul says a woman is not permitted to preach the word of God in the Church. It has always been the tradition of the Church for the priest or deacon alone (an ordained male) to read and preach the Gospel.
1 Tim. 2:12 - Paul also says that a woman is not permitted to hold teaching authority in the Church. Can you imagine how much Mary, the Mother of God, would have been able to teach Christians about Jesus her Son in the Church? Yet, she was not permitted to hold such teaching authority in the Church.
Rom. 16:1-2 - while many Protestants point to this verse denounce the Church's tradition of a male priesthood, deaconesses, like Phoebe, were helpers to the priests (for example, preparing women for naked baptism so as to prevent scandal). But these helpers were never ordained.
Luke 2:36-37 - prophetesses, like Anna, were women who consecrated themselves to religious life, but were not ordained.
Isaiah 3:12 Isaiah complains that the priests of ancient Israel were having their authority usurped by women, and this was at the height of Israels covenant apostasy.
Of course he does. And so does this woman “priest”. Yet Kennedy was still allowed a public Catholic burial.
This shows a nuptial relationship of those who symbolize Christ in relation to the Church: and we would argue that the priests embody this symbolism, standing for Christ (Bridegroom) in relation to the Church (Bride).
This unfortunate Lesbian woman evidently was deeply confused about sex and gender. But she;s not the only one. Most modern people (myself obviously included) have only a weak, puny understanding of embodied, God-intended, spiritual meaning of sexuality. She didn't "get" the relationship between male and female, and therefore didn't "get" that women can't priests for the same reasons that men can't be mothers.
That certainly does not mean that women can't be holy. And the really imnportant, as well as really interesting people in the Catholic Church are not the priests, nor the popes, but the Saints.
He should have been quietly and solemnly interred, possibly with a chanting of the Dies Irae, and his many followers instructed to pray to God for mercy.
My experience as a female Catholic has been that women who want to be priests usually are severely disordered in their thinking. Not a coincidence that many are homosexuals, as that also requires turning nature on its head, and devising a completely backwards, self-destructive world view. My conservative friends and I have long mused over whether it is the fornication or the false religion that comes first.