Zed stressed that women could disseminate God’s message as skillfully as men and deserved equal and full participation and access in religion. He suggested that theologians and canonists of the Church needed to address this issue urgently; re-evaluate Church doctrine, theology, male hierarchy and history; and give women a chance in decision-making and leadership positions in the Church. They needed to re-look at Church’s Cannon Law 1024, which said—Only a baptized man validly receives sacred ordination.
Women should be ordained to priesthood and should perform the same functions as male priests. Treating women as not equal to men was clearly a case of discrimination, promoting gender inequality. God never wanted us to undervalue our sisters, mothers and daughters, Zed argued.
Zed further said that as women were equal partners in the society, so they should be equal partners in the religion also. He urged Vatican to be more kind to Roman Catholic women as exclusion of women from religious services, just because they were females, was very unfair and ungodly.
Quoting Hindu scriptures, Zed said: Where women are honored, there the gods are pleased. Men and women were equal in the eyes of God and religions should respect that, Zed stressed and added that time had now come for the women priests, bishops and Pope.
Zed noted that people with “no religion” were increasing and we (religious leaders and organizations) were responsible for their alienation. Our efforts at social control, judgmentalism, stagnant approach, etc., might be turning them away resulting in many of them questioning belief in God, equating religion with fear, etc.
His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI during mass in Vatican City on April 21, 2011, himself reportedly admitted that people were tired of their faith, people of God becoming population of non-believers, widespread abandonment of faith, people rejecting religion and distancing from God, etc.
Conventional style of dealing with spirituality and religion do not appear to be effectively working. Give them fresh answers without any religious stigma attached. Accept the people who and as they are. Make religion lively and not stagnant if you want to keep your people in God’s fold, Zed pointed out.
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