Two Women Ordained Roman Catholic Deacons in New York on Sunday October 14,2018

Leslie Frances Handy,60, and Celie Katovitch, 29, were ordained transitional Roman Catholic Deacons in a sacred and joyful traditional Ordination ceremony at the Stony Point Conference Center in Stony Point, New York by Bishop Andrea Johnson of the Roman Catholic Women Priests, Eastern Region on October 14, 2018. Each woman is well prepared for the diaconate by life,service, ministerial and educational experience and will serve into 2019 in their respective communities of Baltimore, Maryland and Rochester, New York.

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Fran Handy, as she likes to be called, has led a life of service. She was a religious Sister for many years before returning to lay status and continuing to pursue opportunities to serve God’s people. She holds a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education and is completing a Master’s Degree in Theology and Pastoral Service at Global Ministries University. She is a part of the Living Waters Inclusive Catholic Community in Maryland and will serve as Deacon with them. She is married to Mimi Giguere, works a full time job and lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Her passion is to serve the poor, the outcast, children and families and the LGBTQ community.

Celie Katovitch of Syracuse, New York, has ministerial experience as an ordained Pastor in the Unitarian Universalist Church before returning to Roman Catholicism and membership in the Spiritus Christi Catholic Community in Rochester, New York. Her undergraduate degree is in Philosophy, Peace and Justice from Gettysburg University. She holds a Master’s of Divinity Degree from Harvard University Divinity School(2013) and is also a graduate in Spiritual Direction from the Haden Institute(2018). Her commitment is to serve the poor and disenfranchised.

We are truly blessed and happy to have Fran and Celie as Deacons in the Roman Catholic Women Priests, Eastern Region.
The first picture below is of Deacons Celie and Fran with Priest Jackie Clarys.
The second is all of the Eastern Region priests who were able to be in attendance at this joyful celebration.

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Eastern Region Oct. 14, 2018

The Ordination followed the Retreat of the Eastern Region’s clergy at the rustic and beautiful Stony Point Center from 10/12-14. On the first night we celebrated the lives of two of our priests who died this year: Judy Beaumont and Claire Gareau. Priest Gloria Carpeneto who had been Claire’s mentor told of her gentleness and service and her love of baseball. And I, at times tearfully, shared two poems about the life of unceasing compassion, prayer and service led by Judy. In a truly moving celebration of their lives we shared the grief of loss and the hope of lives lived entirely for and with Christ in love and service.
In the picture below our Colombian priests, Marina Teresa Sanchez Mejia, Judith Bautista Fajardo and Maria Elena Sierra Sanchez sit at the memory altar and consider the lives of Judy and Claire.
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As Judy Beaumont and I went to Colombia four times to assist the priests there having our Colombian priests at this Memorial Celebration was particularly meaningful.
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The topic of the Retreat was “Claiming Our Prophetic Voice and Witness” structured on the Samaritan woman’s encounter with Jesus in John 4. Our retreat leader was Amy Wellborn who was amazing. We applied this truly exciting story to our individual lives and to our mission as Roman Catholic Women Priests. One of the questions we considered was: “We also pondered the questions; How do we speak to power? How do we read the signs of the times? How do we create bridges to the future? and How do we embody the gospel message?”. As Roman Catholic Women Priests we are wondering if witnessing and being a new model of church is our prophetic call?” We did not find all of the answers but generated energy to pursue these important questions by our work and caring interactions.

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How blessed we were and how fitting it was to end this important retreat with the ordination of two new Deacons! Celie and Fran, Fran and Celie,Bienvenidos, Welcome! ANd Bendiciones, Blessings! You remain in our hearts and prayers as you continue to serve our loving God.

This is the quilt of our names made by our Priest Barbara Beadles. Our departed members lead us at the top of the quilt.
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THANKS BE TO GOD!
Rev. Dr. Judy Lee, RCWP

A Saint for Our Times:A Woman RC Priest’s Reflections on the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi

Humble St. Francis of Assisi whose Feast day is today is a Saint for our times. If there could be a Saint named to intercede for the Environment, for Sister Mother Earth, all of earth’s creatures, and for a rebuilt and renewed church, it would be Francis of Assisi. Probably Francis and all gentle saints both named and unnamed by the church are already praying for the preservation of God’s beautiful and boundless creation. Perhaps they are praying for each one of us to “do something” to save our planet and all residing in and on it, for action is needed now more than ever even as it was needed in Francis’ 12th Century world of Umbria and Assisi, and all around it. And, surely, they are praying for the conversion and return to God of a church where sexual abuse, inequity, and the abuse of money is becoming better known than the Gospel.

Francis, or Francesco as his well to do merchant father renamed him for his love of France, was a “highborn” and spoiled young man who won the favor of all he knew for his affable and party loving ways. He actively pursued dreams of being a warrior and nobility, not of being a holy saint.Yet, something happened to change Francesco. When he was 25 he had a dream in which he heard God’s voice telling him “it was all wrong” and asking him “Francis, repair my church”. church”. At first he thought God meant the dilapidated building where his village worshiped. So he did that only to learn that was not what the dream meant. This use of money angered his father and he had to pay it back and then he was disinherited. Francis was surprisingly relieved by this and, listening to his call from God,began a life of prayer and letting go of all material goods to share with the poor and infirm, and all of God’s creatures, whom he cared for with the same strong energy he used in dissipation in his former life. The hallmark of his actions was respect and love for all creatures great and small, for animals and birds, the infirm and beggars as well as the highborn and the pope. Equal love and respect. Wow! What a beautiful yet difficult lesson that is for us. Not all who follow the way of Francis will choose radical poverty as he did, but many can try to “give it all away”. And ,as for the conversion of the soul needed to live in simplicity and holiness as the poor and sick and all creatures are served, it can be a life long process. But to follow the Gospel in loving and showing respect to all, ALL- great and small- with equanimity is simply to live the Gospel as Jesus lived and preached it. It is that simple and that difficult. Most of all it is not an ascetic road, but one that demands actual action and hard work. Francis “got” what Jesus taught and lived: to love all of God’s creation and creatures, one must give one’s very self away. Francis ended his life chronically and terminally ill and blind and worn out from serving the poor, the sick and all of God’s creatures. He did not gain material comfort or ascend to nirvana or higher consciousness. He worked hard at serving his beloved God and all of creation until he died at 45. But for Francis, death was welcomed as freedom and unity with his beloved God and Christ.( For more about Francis one might see:
https://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=50 ).

Francis wrote his famous Canticle of the Sun or Laudes Creaturarum- Canticle of Creatures when he was suffering his last illness and facing death. He says “Be praised, my Lord through….Brother Sun, Sister Moon, Brother Fire, Sister Water, Sister Mother Earth and all of God’s creatures,and finally through Sister Death.” He praised God through all life and through its natural ending- called the first death, but advised that the the “second death”, or life cut off from God after death, can not harm God’s beloved who love and serve God and all of creation and will be united with God in dying here. His is an action and love filled spirituality. He also said” it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and in dying that we live”. He urged us to “start by doing what is necessary;then do what is possible;and suddenly you are doing the impossible”. I think of Rev. Judy Beaumont who lived a life of service her entire life, serving and blessing others until the last few days of her life when she could do no more. Her life of selfless service and love was a Francis life although she served 35 of her years as a Benedictine Sister, and the last 6 years as a RC woman priest. And her surrendering finally to Sister Death into Life was what Francis was talking about.

And we need to do the “impossible” now, we are reminded that here and now our earth, our planet, is in peril; wars and conflict rage on; human poverty and senseless illness and death is on the increase; water and resources for life are destroyed; and there is cruelty and abuse to both children and animals that is on a scale that is hard to fathom. And,what should be a powerful vehicle for changing this, the church,is in crisis and shame in the realities of sexual abuse on such a wide scale while married men and women are still not able to “officially” be ordained priests to serve God’s precious people. We have a new Francis, our Pope, whose heart is in the right place to have an impact on all of this, but who is hampered by the realities of the Roman Church itself and its archaic structures and politics. But more than this, he is hampered by us. Each one of us needs to become aware of the threats to our planet and to God’s poor and all creatures, and we each need to “do something” about it, to have an impact on exercising the possible to do the impossible-change the directions tings are moving in. No one Francis , however powerful his or her role, can change anything. All of us need to become a Francis and assist.

Here is an example of a man, in fact a Jewish man, who made an important choice to live more like Francis. And I am not sure he would ever conceptualize it this way, but I was so impressed by him. He is my Doctor, Paul Yudelman and he has been a wise , compassionate and able Doctor who has saved my life in his discovery of a stomach cancer- now happily removed and giving no trouble for five years. He also ministered to our Judy Beaumont during her illness and passing with the greatest compassion and skill. His compassion made him different as a Doctor. He has reached retirement age and while I feel sad that he will no longer be my Doctor and we also had many great conversations, I am awed by his decision. He is giving up on making money in Medicine and says “he has enough”. He is moving to Washington State to be part of the Environmental Movement and will give his considerable energy, passion and compassion and wisdom to saving our earth. He challenges us and me in particular to do what I can here, where our water is full of red tide, dead fish and sea life and toxic blue green algae. Erin Brokovitch is now here to help local activists champion this cause. I can act politically with my vote and in other small ways to counter this.

I think too of those who serve the poor and homeless here as it seems an endless battle when there are no local or state taxes to assist with housing and finances. I think of the many churches, groups and individuals who share with the poor and help them attain what they need with dignity. I think of Tonya Van Scoy and her family and friends who continue their Saturday night feeding ministry in the park. They, like our Good Shepherd Ministry, have had to slow down some recently due to illness and many changes in their lives. But we have been doing what we could for eleven years. And we could do this because so many good Christ followers have helped us. I think of the faithfulness of Hank and Claire Tessandori and Judy Alves and Jim Pellstring and Rev. Judith McKloskey and Rvda Marina Sanchez and Pearl and Dr. Joe Cudjoe to our ministry and of many others. In our ministry Ellen and Jack McNally still make food for our community gatherings as does Kathy Roddy who knows what it is like to struggle, but more importantly to serve. And also many continue to give us material support that we share with the poorest although we have dissolved our tax exempt status. This is a pure act of love. And when we can no longer do this others replace us. I think of Joe and Cece Irvin and Boot straps Ministry. Fr. Joe is a married priest and we worked together in the Park from 2007-2010. Then we moved separate ways as our ministries evolved. Their Ministry is active now in North Fort Myers. And there are many others who serve, Grace Methodist Church downtown, and several small ministries like Pastor Mandy’s. And I think too of some of our formerly homeless and still poor folks like Brenda Cummings and Harry Gary who give their assistance and support to keep these street ministries alive for the poorest among us. And I think of Mercedes with HEAL who works tirelessly to help abandoned and abused pets to get a new lease on life and a home. I think of my friend Danielle Nisivoccia who cares for the feral cats near her home in Pennsylvania. She feeds them tasty mackerel and wet and dry food and builds them igloos and uses a renovated Green House for shelter for them in the hard winters. Another neighbor, Elaine, who is caring for her terminally ill mother also cares for many of the area’s feral cats. Danielle is also reaching time to retire from this hard work but can not envision selling that property because 2-3 old and weak cats still need her compassionate intervention. And with the help of Dr. Terry Sutton and her lovely Staff I still care for 19 cats here and several outside as does at least one other of her clients. It is hard work but her help makes the difference in so many ways.

And I think of our Roman Catholic women priests who give up the support of the church communities they loved to serve as priests and who serve the poorest and also animals. In this I think of Pastor Gabriela Velardi-Ward who has an Inclusive Catholic church in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village and who also feeds and cares for feral cats in her home in Staten Island, and, an architect,she works full time as well. I think of Rev. Marni who cares for the poor and for countless cats and dogs in Arizona where she builds homes for their shelter and comfort even as she struggles with health issues. And I remember our Franciscan Third Order Priest, Adele Decker Jones for her wisdom and love,and Rev. Tish Rawles for her love of God’s little creatures and applaud Rev. Elena Garcia who has spent a life caring for the poor. And there are many more women( and a few men) who do so in our over 260 validly but illicitly ordained priests and deacons world-wide.

And I think of countless ministers to the poor, both clergy and laity and Religious Sisters and Brothers who, like Francis give their whole lives to the poor both in the USA and abroad. All of this makes me feel that it is possible to join St. Francis of Assisi in his dream of “repairing the church” and loving and serving all of God’s creatures and Creation, our planet,-in doing the impossible. May each one of us try a little harder with God’s help.


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Amen.
Rev. Dr. Judy Lee,Pastor
Good Shepherd Ministries, Fort Myers, Florida

Carrying One Another’s Cross: Good Shepherd Inclusive Catholic Community Gathers to Worship 9/15/18

On Saturday afternoon 9/15/18 twenty members of the Good Shepherd Inclusive Catholic Community in Fort Myers joyfully gathered to worship and also to celebrate our September and October Birthdays. They came by car and foot,bus and bike to Pastor Marina Sanchez’s home located in a central Fort Myers area. They ranged in age from 5-87 and everywhere in between, black, white, Hispanic, female and male, poor and well off, gay and straight, sick and well, heart broken and yet full of love, they came. After the passing of our beloved co-Pastor Judy Beaumont out of her suffering to wholeness and life forever with God, Pastor Judy Lee is slowly offering regular worship to the community once again. She continues to serve the Community on a daily basis but our worship will now possibly be every two months. We are especially thankful to Co-Pastor Marina Sanchez for offering her home for our gathering and for serving with us.

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Celebrating Birthdays today were Brenda Jean Cummings, (and this was her birthdate!),Kathy Roddy (who also prepared today’s meal) and Quayschaun Crews and Jolinda Terrell. Quay was unable to stay for the whole celebration after bringing his Grandma Jolinda Harmon, and Jolinda Terrell and all of the Harmon grandchildren were unable to come as they had already planned their First Annual Kickball Game in the park in honor of their dear mother Linda Maybin who in the midst of life’s many struggles always gathered the whole family for a good kickball game. Linda had her “first birthday in heaven” after making her transition home to God last year on 9/14, a day after her 41st birthday. We lit a candle for our faithful member Linda today as well.

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Our lessons for the day were for the 23rd Sunday in Ordianry time: Isaiah 50:5-9a read by our Deacon Hank Tessandori-In this reading Christ’s patient suffering and non-violent responses are foretold; Psalm 116 led by our elder Harry Lee Peter Gary- Response: I walk before you, Adonai, in the land of the living-our response to God who gives us life and protects the little ones is love; The Epistle-James 2-14-18 read by Maya Rismay- Faith without works is dead- work for justice, love beyond what is easy, serve one another. The Gospel Mark 8:27-35-“You are the Christ…” Deny yourself and take up your cross”-accept Christ’s suffering and if need be, your own. Peter misses the mark and insists on no suffering for Jesus. The Gospel was read in English by Pastor Judy Lee and in Spanish by Pastor Marina Sanchez who also summarized the readings and Pastor Judy’s homily in Spanish.

Homily
Our readings in Isaiah, James and Mark reflect on how we are to live our faith. With the suffering servant of Isaiah we are to respond to violence with non-violence-to give our backs to those who beat us(yet without having the message beaten out of us)-this speaks to our legacy of non-violent resistance in pursuit of peace and justice. Ghandi, Martin Luther King Jr. and all here and everywhere who followed them, the Plowshares Movement including our Judy Beaumont in Plowshares Nein, showed us how to do this. And clearly those who use non-violent resistance and civil disobedience may also suffer before their ultimate victory. And there are places in the world today , like Syria, where Christians die for being Christians. And those of us who do not suffer bodily harm for following Christ still may suffer rebuke and retribution for living our call to serve- like our women RC priests, and those imprisoned for civil disobedience, and those of the LGBTQ community who suffer at the hands of some of organized religion just for being who we are and claiming Christ.

It is a disservice to God’s people who know better to be like Peter was in the Gospel, trying to convince Christ not to suffer, saying in effect, “you are God’s own , you will not suffer and die”. Peter tried to convince Christ of this out of love. He was not a bad guy just off the mark. Who wants a loved one to suffer? Instead we say, “no , it will not happen”. Yet often it does. In our church community we have lost many loved ones in the past two years. Several of us have suffered with cancer and other painful illnesses had to undergo chemo , radiation and other forms of treatment that also brought suffering. Fortunately this worked for some of us who sit with us today, but not for all. So, disciple Peter, when Jesus tells you “satanas”, (‘you missed the mark’ in Aramaic) or, in our English “you were bad minded”- suffering does exist and does touch us, sometimes even for good as in the death and resurrection of Christ. So friends, let us not deny suffering or think that it will miss God’s beloved children. It doesn’t,those sitting here and reading this know this too well, but when we do what James is asking us to do-live our faith, do works of mercy and love, and what Jesus tells us, “take up that cross”, let us do it with all the love we can muster for one another. Let us bear one another’s crosses. There are so many examples in this one community of the ways we do serve one another and all of God’s sometimes broken children. Ellen and Jack and Kathy ,Pearl and Judy A., Hank and Claire, provide food and wheels, guidance and love for the poorest among us. Grandma Harmon, even as she goes through chemo, cares for all of her grandchildren and family without complaint. Debbie and Mary and our younger members Maya and Joelle, prime examples, take time to visit and to care for their elders, including me. Pastor Marina cares for very sick people every day. What a serving community we are, and we are blessed to be together today. Pain and suffering can not be avoided, but God is there with us, and through us,and through it all and we are there for one another, making someone else’s cross a little bit lighter. That is the kind of faith we have. So let us not deny or minimize suffering, especially suffering for the kin-dom of God here and now and to come-let us instead live our faith and lean on God and lean on and love one another. And before we conclude let’s sing some verses of Lean on Me by Bill Withers. Maya plays the song on her i-phone and everyone sings along. I conclude with “we have a new sacred song’, continue to carry one another’s cross, and all respond a resounding AMEN!

Members pray for the sick,( laying hands on those who request prayer for illness),for the departed, for the world and the church in moving and specific terms. We sing “It’s me standin’ in the need of prayer” and we claim the ground as Holy Ground, including touching our own hearts and our neighbors’s hand as holy ground. As we celebrate the Holy Eucharist and share in Holy Communion, Pearl and Hank lead us in “Peace is flowing like a river..Love is flowing like a river…”. One of our newer guests, Jean, shared that this is the first time she received Holy Communion in more years than she can count. We are thankful. We sing “I’m so glad Jesus lifted me-when troubles got me bound, Jesus lifted me…”. And Deacon Hank sends us forth to serve. We conclude with “I have decided to follow Jesus” perhaps grasping together a bit more of what this means having come together as a community today.

Afterward we have our meal and Brenda cuts the first piece of the big birthday cake, bringing a piece to Kathy. Brenda, enjoys our after-party sharing “this is the first birthday party I ever had”. We applaud and begin reluctantly to part.
Our next Sunday worship and community gathering will be on November 17th.

With love and blessings,
Pastor Judy Lee

Rev. Dr. Judy Lee, RCWP

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“Do you also want to leave?”-Horror, Hunger and Hope for the Church

Today’s Gospel reading (John 6: 60-69) is a good one to ponder as we experience two recent major events in the life of the Church- the horrific events revealed in the Pennsylvania Report on Priest Sexual Abuse (8/16/18) involving at least 300 priests and over a thousand abused children and youth;and witnessing the hundreds of thousands gathered for the Ninth World Meeting of Families with Pope Francis culminating in Holy Mass at Phoenix Park in Dublin, Ireland today- 8/26/18. In a period of ten days our hearts must respond to horror and yet rise to see the hunger of people everywhere for God, for Christ and, yes, for Church. And, perhaps the hope of the church is to squarely and courageously face and address the horrors, called the open wound in need of immediate healing by Pope Francis, and to witness,understand, and respond to the hunger, the longing for God’s Love and Community that surpasses even the sins and weaknesses of the church and that can be fed only with the love of Christ-love that goes beyond any institutionalization of church to the heart of God and the hearts of those who long for God and the hearts of the people of God, for the people are church, not the walls nor the man-made hierarchy. May this moment of crisis and disequilibrium make the church ripe for risking changes at the very core that fulfill the love of Christ for the whole world.

The Gospel today begins with the words: “….This saying is hard, who can accept it?” (Or “This sort of teaching is very hard!”-two different Catholic Bible translations-NAB and Christian Community Bible-Pastoral Edition). The teaching referred to is Jesus saying that he is the bread of life come down from God and that he is offering his very self to eat and drink- for our sustenance. Let us both take this at face value (our later understanding of the Eucharist), and also suppose he is speaking metaphorically- for in the Aramaic language that Jesus spoke “Bread of life” or “living water” would mean “my teachings are eternal truth” -truth giving life forever-if you live them. George Lamsa Aramaic scholar in Idioms in the Bible Explained… pp. 60,79, points out that understanding the Aramaic phraseology helps us to understand what the people in Jesus’ time would have heard. For example there is a phrase about eating and drinking flesh and blood that means “work very hard”. For example, “We have eaten the flesh and drunk the blood of our fathers while building this house” means “we have worked very hard to build this house”. Jesus challenges us to work very hard at living the truths he has taught us. To be Christian is ultimately not simply to say the “magic” words “I believe in Christ” or to take Holy Communion but to LIVE the essence of love, forgiveness, right relation to God and to all others, inclusion and compassion especially for the poor and outcasts of this world. That is, to work hard for justice and peace is to eat and drink the teachings of Christ-that is to work hard to live them.

Yes, it is hard to take in the bread of life and become the body of Christ. It is hard to have our lives become truly Christ-like. We may forgive one another for falling short though forgiveness is one of the hardest things we ever do- but we hold our priests and clergy to a higher standard-one closer to fully living Jesus. Hence when it is once again revealed to us that over 300 priests in one just one State, Pennsylvania(and there are 49 more states and the rest of the world to multiply this by)-could not live these truths but instead violated them and betrayed innocent children, youth and adults with rape, molestation and sexual abuse, using their power to subjugate and gratify themselves, we are horrified and many have expressed “that is why I left the church” or “that’s it- now I will leave the church”. It is hard to separate the followers of Christ who are supposed to lead us from the Christ we follow. And I am saddened not only by the sins of the church and the clergy but for those who are driven away by this-and then have little else to hang on to for life. This makes me angry at my fellow priests and at the mysogynist doctrines and canons that spawn them. Yet, I, along with the other Roman Catholic women-over 250 world wide- who have been ordained as priests will condemn the acts of sexual and power abuse and yet pray for our brother priests and for the church. We know that for the majority of good priests this news of wide scale abuse is painful to accept, to tolerate and to bear. Yet it is clearly also true. We are deeply imperfect, our church is imperfect and yet we seek to follow and remain with Jesus and to be there for God’s hungry and thirsty people. And, like our brother priests, and despite the lack of acceptance for us, we have not left the church but, at whatever costs, seek to renew it with our lives.
When Jesus asks”Do you also want to leave?” Or “Will you also go away?” with hearts wrenching we reply “No, but we will work very hard to renew the Church in Christ’s image of love and compassion for all who hurt and have been hurt, even by the institutional church, with the help of God. For me, it helps to keep in mind and and heart my own beloved parishioners and to witness the hundreds of thousands who show up to have Mass with Pope Francis even after experiencing and knowing full well the evils perpetuated by the Church in Ireland and by the Church in Pennsylvania and the imperfect clergy and institution world wide-the examples of abuse are far too many to name here. And, yet, with their disillusion and with eyes wide open they come, they come to seek the living Christ. And probably among them are those wronged by priests. And probably among them are couples who are same sex heading families who are not seen as families in the eyes of the “official” church doctrine, and among them are those who seek Christ beyond the imperfections of doctrine and priests that have hurt them. May we work hard to be the body of the living Christ to all who seek and want to draw closer to God’s love. May we be the instruments of peace and love blessing all families without reserve of any kind. May we become the love of Christ.

Here are some links to articles on the horrific clergy abuse and relevant strong responses including those by Pope Francis, the Bishops of Roman Catholic Women Priests world-wide and the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests and others.
https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/Shame+Sorrownews/shame-and-sorrow—holy-see-responds-to-pennsylvania-report-16263
https://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/Modern-Catholics-Church-Sex-Abuse-Report-Pope-Francis-491295871. by Alicia Victoria Lochtin.
https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/article217184300.html
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2018/08/17/roman-catholic-church-sex-abuse-scandals-struggle/1024427002/ by Kate McElwee WOC
https://bridgetmarys.blogspot.com/2018/08/pope-warned-by-male-priests-that.html

Statement on the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Findings 8-26-18

Let us pray that the church will be so challenged by recent truths to restructure to include married priests, women, openly gay clergy and all who God created in God’s image to reflect God’s love to all people. Let us pray that all who serve- clergy and “lay people” alike may grow closer to the heart and love of Christ and that all those harmed by clergy and church will find complete healing and love in the heart of Christ.
Amen!
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In sorrow and in love,
blessings,
Rev. Dr. Judy Lee, RCWP
Pastor Good Shepherd Inclusive Catholic Community Fort Myers, Florida

Ohio Woman refused Communion After Diaconate Ordination

Kathleen O’Connell Sauline was refused Holy Communion on July 8,2018 in St.Luke RC Church in Boardman, Ohio, a church where she raised her children. On July 1, she was ordained a deacon in ARCWP a part of the international Roman Catholic Women Priests Movement. NCR National Correspondent Heidi Schlumpf wrote her story on July 26, 2018 in NCR Online.

https://www.ncronline.org/news/justice/woman-refused-communion-after-ordination-diaconate

Blessings to Kathleen as she courageously and faithfully lives out her life of service in her transitional diaconate.

Rev. Dr. Judy Lee, RCWP
Good Shepherd Ministry
Fort Myers, Florida