Educated by the U. S. Vowed Religious
Support the U. S. Catholic Sisters
Support, Minister, and Live the Social Gospel
Theologian, Feminist, and Critical Thinker
Former Girl Scout Leader of Three Troops
Former Girl Scout
I am all of these things and more. By the recent attacks by the hierarchy of the Catholic Church, I am beginning to think I am the problem. I seem to stand for everything the Vatican and USCCB seek to silence. Is it because of my organizational ties with the U. S. Vowed Religious and Girl Scouts, or my writings as a Feminist and Theologian? Maybe the answer is simply – because I am a woman.
According to the criticisms launched by the USCCB and the Vatican, I seem to be part of the problem rather than the solution. Why is this so? It was not until I started my journey in ministry that my idealistic “Catholic” bubble popped – not so much by me, but by those in ministry and leadership, by those that did not like laity to pose questions and think critically about their faith beliefs, and by those that do not like people who do not fit within the preconceived mold of what a “good Catholic” should be. This ideological construct is difficult enough when you are part of a Church community, but when you begin to embrace leadership as a woman, question teachings, exercise your canonical rights, your peers and even people you thought were your friends, no longer talk or associate with you. The betrayal is vicious and runs deep – it is behavior not becoming of a minister or one who professes the Catholic faith.
If the attack on you is not enough, these same people victimize your children through their words and behavior. It is a difficult position for anyone to survive spiritually. For children of the Church who bear witness to this hypocritical behavior, a journey begins – they search for meaning within the spiritual realm and become disgruntled with anything that resembles organized religion. A place where one seeks community and spiritual nourishment becomes a place of oppression and starvation. If attacking family is not enough, let’s start attacking groups that promote community – groups like the Girl Scouts of America.
So, what is the USCCB’s problem with the Girl Scouts of America? Basically, this organization is under fire for suspected deviant thinking and positions that stand opposed to Church teaching. Continue reading “The Crime of Being a Girl Scout: The Sin of Raising Strong Female Leaders by Michele Stopera Freyhauf”