This post by Michelle Neitzke is reprinted from LifeTeen.com
Going home for holidays was always something I looked forward to in college. I didn’t get to go home a ton because my family lived over 24 hours from my University, unlike most of my friends I didn’t just hop in a car to go home for Christmas. Instead while most people were driving a couple hours to get home, I was hustling through busy airports.
I have always enjoyed people watching in airports and I also actually enjoy the small (sometimes awkward) conversations with the person next to me on the plane. When I traveled home for Christmas break these plane conversations usually started with my neighbor asking me why I was going home. Once I told them I was going home for a break, the next question that usually followed was “what is your major?” I always get varying responses when I tell someone I studied Theology, but on these plane rides in college, there was one response that was pretty common.
“What do you want to do with your degree in Theology? Do you want to be a priest? Why can’t you be a priest?”
To be honest, sometimes these questions made me uncomfortable. But because it was such a great opportunity to share my faith, I tried to answer to the best of my ability.
“Do you want to be a priest” isn’t just a question that was asked because I was woman studying theology. I think it comes from a deeper place, I think people are genuinely curious why the Catholic Church teaches that the priesthood is reserved to men. And let’s be honest, some people aren’t just curious about it, they are angry about it.
I want to tell you as a woman, I am not mad that I can’t be a priest but actually respect and uphold the priesthood.
There is a lot of confusion surrounding the priesthood. I think the only way we can start to understand why the priesthood is reserved for men is by looking at what the priesthood actually is.
1. WHAT’S A PRIEST ANYWAY?
Christ’s priesthood was prefigured in the Old Testament. Priests in the Old Testament mediated between man and God. Think of the priests who offered sacrifices. While these priests in the Old Testament mediated and offered sacrifices, they were unable to to bring salvation through their sacrifice, that would only come through Christ (CCC 1539, Exodus 29:1-30). Read the rest of this entry