Tuesday, September 11 at 7:00pm
The Community of Saint Peter
7100 Euclid Avenue, Suite 125
Cleveland, OH 44103-4038
Women’s Leadership in the Twentieth-Century Church
We often think of women’s ordination as a progressive, “new” debate. But women have been asking for a greater role in the liturgy and eucharist for centuries. And American women were never closer to achieving that goal than in the 1940s – 1950s, when a cadre of exceptional young friends led ministries of social justice that gained the support of leading priests and bishops. Those three women were Dorothy Day, Patricia Crowley, and Nina Polcyn. Each of these women is well-known for the organizations they founded. (Dorothy founded the Catholic Worker movement. Patty founded the Christian Family Movement and, later, Call to Action. Nina founded the Catholic library movement.) Although less-frequently remembered for it, Day, Polcyn, and Crowley were also at the forefront of the debate over whether women could one day become deacons or priests. This lecture will explore the relationship between social justice and women’s ministry, using these three exemplars as case studies in the potential of and obstacles to increasing women’s leadership in the Church.