ARCWP Press Release: Catholics Call for a Church 4 All Includes Women Priests: During Pope Francis’ Visit, ARCWP will ordain 3 women bishops
As Pope Francis arrives in the United States, members of the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests will be near Philadelphia. On Sept. 24th at 2 PM at Pendle Hill, PA we will ordain 3 new women bishops from Latin America, Canada and the United States in order to meet our growing needs of women called to priesthood.
We serve inclusive Catholic communities where all are welcome to receive sacraments including gays, lesbians, and transgender as well as divorced and remarried Catholics.
One-third of all adults who were raised Catholics have left the church. One of the main reasons is disillusionment with the church on the treatment of women.
According to one survey, 70% of U.S. Catholics support women priests.
“The good news is that the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests is forming a new community of equal partnership with the people of God.” Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan said. “We would love to meet Pope Francis and share our hopes and dreams for gender equality in a discipleship of equals, not a new hierarchy. “
The bishops-elect are:
Olga Lucia Alvarez of Medellin, Colombia was educated by the Dominican Sisters of the Presentation. She did USEMI Missionary work with indigenous and Afro communities and was secretary of CELAM Medellin 1968. Formation included religious studies, pastoral ministry, catechesis Superior, liberation theology and an emphasis on popular reading of the Bible. Olga was ordained a priest in Sarasota, FL on December 11, 2010. She accompanies several communities and strengthens the ecumenical base primarily of the itinerant. She works with women convicts and ASFADES (Association of Families of the Disappeared), is author of several books and articles in biblical-theological reflection and is a Collective Member of the Ecumenical Bible Scholars.
Michele Birch Conery of Windsor, ONT Canada celebrated her 10th anniversary as Canada’s first woman priest on July 25th. Michele was ordained a deacon in Passau, Germany in 2004 and a priest in 2005 on the St. Lawrence Seaway. A retired professor of English Literature and Women’s Studies with a focus on Women and Religion, she lived and ministered on Vancouver Island with outreach to the LGBTQ Dignity Vancouver community. In 2013, she moved to Windsor where she collaborates with priest Barbara Billey and Deacon Jeni Marcus of Detroit in their Heart of Compassion Faith Communities in Ontario and Michigan.
Mary E. Collingwood of Hudson, OH has served for over 40 years in church ministry. With an MA in Theology from St. Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology in Wickliffe, OH, she served as Director of Religious Education, Coordinator for Marriage Preparation, Pastoral Associate, Director of the Diocesan Pro-Life Office and on various boards and councils. Mary and her husband, Rich, continue to be blessed with seven children and are grandparents. Weekly celebration of Eucharist, administering the sacraments, pastoral counseling, and supporting women in ordained ministry is her calling and passion. Mary was ordained a priest in Brecksville, OH on May 24, 2014.
The ordaining bishops are Bridget Mary Meehan, ARCWP, author of 20 books, including Living Gospel Equality Now. She serves as a pastoral member of Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community in Sarasota, FL firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bishop Sibyl Dana Reynolds, RCWP, is author of Ink and Honey, a historic and spiritual novel and founder of the Sisters of Belle Coeur, a contemporary, contemplative spiritual community. email@example.com.
A third bishop will also be present. The Federation of Christian Ministries (FCM) will be represented by its president, Thomas Cusak.