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Mum, granny, jill-of-all-trades, Wales, UK

Survivor of Catholic male-think. Bless ’em. Sometimes

It has taken me six decades to survive Catholic male-think.

As a hardworking and good little girl, one of three sisters in a happy and close large family, I was indignant at the treats and fuss that our kind nuns gave my laid-back, often lazy, brothers as altar-servers. My adored teacher called my 8 year old younger brother, ‘Bishop John’. In the eyes of the Sisters, my brothers were our potential priests. Nothing was too good for them. My well-meaning but old-fashioned father compounded the patriarchal attitude at home.

Not until my retirement, when I joined Catholic Women’s Ordination, and then morphed into a founder of Root & Branch, did I finally learn to speak publicly without the pounding fear, the tingling sweats, the squeaking breathlessness. Without the internalised, ingrained knowledge of being ‘lesser’.

Does this male-think matter to a privileged woman in the Western Hemisphere? Yes. It is wrong.

Does it matter to a mother in the global South, dying of her thirteenth childbirth and leaving twelve motherless children, because of the Church’s Aristotelian male-think teaching on contraception? Hell, yes! It is not only wrong, but wicked.

In Root & Branch, and Spirit Unbounded, we speak for all women.

And we don’t stop there. Come and share your story.

Root & Branch