However, the first section of the Congregation’s Declaration Inter insigniores on the ordination of women, issued October 15, ,2 presented a sampling of the . Circumstances and origin of the Declaration ‘Inter Insigniores’. 1. The question of the admission of women to the ministerial priesthood seems. Inter Insigniores. Declaration of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on the question of the admission of women to the.

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This teaching requires definitive assent, since, founded on the written Word intr God, and from the beginning constantly preserved and applied in the Tradition of the Church, it has been set forth infallibly by the ordinary and universal Magisterium cf.

Thus, in the present circumstances, the Roman Pontiff, exercising his proper office of confirming the brethren cf. It did not offer at this time any evidence to show that insigniords is indeed the case.

We should note at the start that it would be quite unreasonable to expect a document like Inter insigniores to present a full patristic argument. That would require extensive citations from every period of patristic teaching, and would exceed the unavoidable limits of such a document.

Inter Insigniores – Wikiwand

However, one could reasonably expect that the citations offered would be among the best and most telling that are available. If these selected texts are weak and inconclusive, the evidence for infallible teaching would be weak and inconclusive. Inter insigniores offered citations from the Fathers in support of two propositions: Inter insigniores offered five authorities in support of the first proposition.

The first is Irenaeus, Adversus Haereses 1, 13, 2. The passage describes a Gnostic insiginores service with overtones of magic: As he [Marcus] feigns to give thanks over the cup mixed with wine, and draws out at great length the prayer of invocation, he makes the cup appear to be purple or red so that it insigniorrs that Grace, who is from the regions which are above all things, dropped her own blood into that cup because of his invocation, and that those who are present greatly desire to taste of that drink, so that Grace, who was invoked by the magician might rain upon them too.

Moreover, having handed mixed cups to the women, he commands them to give thanks over them in his presence. And when this has been done, he himself brings forward another cup much larger than that over which the duped woman gave thanks, and pours from the smaller cup, over which thanks had been given by the woman, into the one which he himself brought forward. At the same time he says over it these words: By saying some such words and driving the wretched woman to madness, he appears to have worked wonders, namely, that the large cup was filled from the small one, even to overflowing.

Still other acts similar to these he performed and deceived many and insigniords them after himself.

In this Gnostic ritual a certain Marcus pretends to make the blood intet the divine Charis or Grace present in a cup. Some women give thanks over a smaller cup, which then appears to fill a much larger cup to overflowing. What Irenaeus objects to is that the whole thing is a blasphemous hoax. He raises no special objection to the involvement of women.

He would be no less opposed if men were performing this rite.

Furthermore, it is difficult to see in what sense women are here exercising priestly ministry. It may well be that Irenaeus objects to women exercising priestly ministry in the Church, but this passage does not show it. The second passage is Tertullian, De praescriptione haereticorum. He is objecting to the slipshod procedures of certain heretics: All [the heretics] are puffed up, all promise knowledge.

Their catechumens are perfect before they are fully instructed.


examining “inter insigniores” – Molly’s Portfolio

The very women of these heretics, how insolent they are! They dare to teach, to dispute, to enact exorcisms, to offer cures —perhaps even to baptize.

Their ordinations are thoughtless, capricious, unstable. For even on laymen they enjoin priestly functions. Tertullian is objecting to the frivolous conduct of certain heretical groups.

Oh no, there’s been an error

One instance of this is the way some women teach, dispute, exorcise, heal, and may even baptize. That is all he says about women. His further talk about ordinations has nothing to do with women. He insignilres objecting to the frivolous conduct of men, to the capricious and changeable character of their ordinations. He would certainly object to the ordination of women, but that is not what he is doing here.

However, scarcely anyone today would object to women doing, at least under some circumstances, the things Tertullian objects to them doing.

Pontifical Faculties grant women academic degrees to teach theology. Women, just as the members of the laity who are men, may baptize licitly in danger of death, and validly at any time. No doubt an argument could be constructed from this passage that if Tertullian objects to women doing these things, he inher much more object to insitniores ordination.

However, since no one today admits the foundation of such an argument the inability of women to do these thingsit is not really convincing to appeal to an argument based on it. The third citation is from Firmilian, bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, d.

Suddenly, a certain woman started up in our midst: But she was so deeply under the sway of the principal demons that she managed to disturb and deceive the brethren for a long time by performing astonishing and preternatural feats.

And that woman, through the illusions and trickeries of the devil, had devised a number of ways for deceiving the faithful.

Among other practices by which intre deceived many, she frequently dared even to use this one: And she would baptize many also adopting the customary and legitimate wording of the baptismal interrogation. And all this she did in such a way that she appeared to deviate in no particular from ecclesiastical discipline. What, then, are we to say about such a baptism, where an evil demon baptized through the agency of a woman?

Can it be that Insigniiores and his adherents extend their approval even to this baptism, especially as it came complete with Trinitarian credal formula and the legitimate invocation ibter the Church? Is it credible that forgiveness of sins was granted or that the rebirth of the saving waters was duly accomplished in a case where everything may have been intter in semblance of the truth but was in fact done though the agency of a demon?

The same thing should be said about the performance of the Eucharistic rite: It cannot in context be taken as an argument against the possibility of ordaining women. The fourth citation adduced to show that the Fathers considered the ordination of women unacceptable is from Origen, from fragments of a commentary on 1 Corinthians.

For they are not permitted to speak, but should be subordinate, as the law also insigniorws. If there is anything they desire to know, let them ask their husbands at home.

For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church. Inaigniores is his comment: For insofar as all speak and can speak if a revelation should come to them cf. But the disciples of the women, who were instructed by Priscilla and Maximilla, not by Christ the husband of the bride cf. But nevertheless let us be reasonable also as we reply to the arguments they find plausible. And if they prophesied, why is it strange that our prophetesses also prophesy? But we shall put an end to these arguments. First, when you say that your prophetesses have prophesied, demonstrate the signs of prophecy among insignilres.


It is attested that Deborah was itner prophetess cf. And Mariam, the sister of Aaron, took unter timbrel and led the women cf. But you would not find that Deborah addressed the people as Jeremiah and Isaiah did; you would not find that Huldah spoke to the people, insighiores she was a prophetess; she spoke to a certain individual who came to her cf.

And Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel of the tribe of Asher, has been mentioned in the Gospel cf. Therefore, even though a intre be granted to be a prophetess by a prophetic sign, nevertheless she is not permitted to speak in church. When Mariam the prophetess spoke she was leading some women. Women speak in Church on many occasions.

Not only do they read the Scriptures in Church, there are frequent occasions where they offer reflections to the assembled faithful. Canon1, referred to here, reserves the preaching of the homily to a priest or deacon, so it is still officially forbidden for a woman, as well as a lay man, to preach in this way at a Eucharistic celebration.

But this is to some degree a technicality. She may comment on the readings at some time other than immediately after they are proclaimed, or her words may be called something else: The fifth citation is from Epiphanius, Panarion 49, ; 78, 23; 79, ; 9 Here we have clear and strong opposition to the priestly ordination of women.

They [the heretics] use the Old and the New Testaments, and likewise affirm the resurrection of the dead. Their founder is Quintilla, along with Priscilla who was also a Phrygian prophetess.

What is more, they say, Philip had four daughters who prophesied. However, they call them Artotyrites because they set bread and cheese on the altar in their mysteries and celebrate their mysteries with them. But every human illusion. The speculation is entirely feminine, and the malady of the deluded Eve all over again. Or rather, it is the malady of the snake, the seducing beast, and the false promise of the one who spoke in it.

This promise made no suggestion and did not make its undertaking good, but only caused death by calling the untrue true, and encouraging disobedience by the sight of the tree, and aversion to the truth itself by attraction to many things.

What has nourished the wickedness that — through the female, once more! This profoundly influences his way of interpreting the scriptures. He is scarcely a noble or credible witness in this matter. The second proposition held: The first citation is from the Didascalia Apostolorum, chapter This work originated in Syria between andand presents itself as a composition of the Twelve Apostles.

It is an early collection of legal and liturgical matters. The passages referred to object to women teaching and baptizing: It is neither right nor necessary therefore that women should be teachers, and especially concerning the name of Christ and the redemption of his passion.

For you have not been appointed to this, O women, and especially widows, that you should teach, but that you should pray and entreat the Lord God. For if it were required that women should teach, our Master Himself would have commanded these to give instruction with us. That a woman should baptize, or that one should be baptized by a woman, we do not counsel, for it is a transgression of the commandment, and a great peril to her who baptizes and to him who is baptized.

For if it were lawful to be baptized by a woman, our Lord and Teacher Himself would have been baptized by Mary His mother, whereas he was baptized by John, like others of the people.