That women feel the call to be deaconesses and priestesses is a reality
LINZ. Margit Hauft, Chairwoman of the Catholic Women's Movement in Austria, has called for the admission of women to the diaconate. Also the subject of women and priesthood should be thoroughly discussed, says Hauft.
OÖN: Ms. Hauft, the Diocese of Linz is currently occupied with the cases of Friedl and Wagner. Is this area of tension a place for your suggestions?
Hauft: Hope is there. It is not a dream, because women feel called to be deaconess or priestess or feel, rather a fact. Women do not want to take the position of men in the church, but in addition to provide pastoral help.
OÖN: An example?
Hauft: A hospital chaplain accompanies people as they die. But then she is prohibited to give Extreme Unction. She may only give the blessing. These people are confused by this. Just like the dying who ask: Why should you not hear my confession?
OÖN: If women are permitted to be deaconesses or priestesses would you be one of the first to aspire to ordination.
Hauft: I? No, not at all. I am called to be a mother.
OÖN: Bishop Ludwig Schwarz wanted to say nothing to us about your proposal, when we asked him Does this surprise you?
Hauft: Bishop Ludwig knows my opinion. He has assured me that he has also repeatedly expressed himself about the matter in appropriate places. And I believe him. We have committed large resources to women, married men and priests, who are currently without an office and who could support priests currently in office. The Eucharistic celebration is the highest priority but then I cannot guarantee it because I do not have enough priests for this. What is there to say from a theological perspective against opening?
OÖN: Do you understand Father Friedl who publicly confesses his relationship with a woman?
Hauft: It is not my life. His difficult situation shows that the combination of an absolute obligation of celibacy and priesthood always brings problems. Celibacy has a high value. Priests should be given the option as to whether they want to live celibately or not.
Cathcon: Wonder if she has read this?