The May 9 issue of California Catholic Daily linked to an article from the Contra Coast Times on the ordination into a group called the Roman Catholic Woman Priests of a woman named Maureen Mancuso. The second line of the Times story “Now, she’s facing excommunication for what she will do Saturday: become the first woman of her faith ordained a priest in Northern California” contained about as many errors as is possible for a sentence of that length. She is not being ordained, she is not a Catholic, and she does not face excommunication.
As the blog A Shepherd’s Voice reported on January 18, 2012, (“Playing with fire: From Clown Masses to Excommunicated Parishioner”), Mancuso was “ordained a womandeacon” on September 18, 2011. She no longer faces excommunication, because by that act she was already excommunicated. Mancuso is/was a parishioner at Christ the King parish in Pleasant Hill, California. She also served as an RCIA instructor at that parish. At that time she was a member of, and the webmaster for, a group called Women of Magdala which was based out of Christ the King. All four of the women listed as contacts on the Women of Magdala webpage are or were prominent parishioners of Christ the King. One of them, Gwen Watson, was pictured with Christ the King pastor, Father Brian Joyce, at a Call to Action conference. The Women of Magdala were the ongoing hosts of an East Bay Eucharistic Gathering performed by “Roman Catholic Womanpriest” Victoria Rue. Rue is an open homosexual.
Mancuso is not alone. On May 1, the webpage of Sophia in Trinity, a group led by the same Victoria Rue, contained this announcement: “Please join Sophia in Trinity in Celebrating the First Ordination of a Roman Catholic Woman Priest in the Archdiocese of San Francisco. Merlene Olivia Doko, Presiding Bishop, at the ordination to the priesthood of Deacon Maria Eitz Sunday, May 26, 2013, at 3:30 p.m. Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran, 678 Portola Drive, in San Francisco.”
The name Maria Eitz may be familiar to readers. On July 3, 2012, in the article “Will she be removed?” California Catholic Daily reported that Maria Eitz had been “ordained” a “womandeacon” on June 23, 2012. “Removed’ in the title referred to the fact that at the time of the “ordination,” Eitz was serving as a member of the liturgy committee at San Francisco’s St. John of God Church. Eitz’s “ordination” took place at Sophia in Trinity, run by the selfsame Victoria Rue. Eitz’s “diaconate ordination” should not have come as a surprise: about a year earlier California Catholic Daily had reported a July 2, 2011 entry on the Sophia in Trinity blog: “And then Victoria “outed” Maria Eitz who was announced as a candidate for priesthood in RCWP! There were shouts of joy and sustained applause for Maria!” As late as two months before that (her resignation was announced in the June 20, 2011 minutes) Eitz had been serving as a member of the St. John of God parish council—as well as on the liturgy committee. It strains credulity to believe that none of the other members of the liturgy committee or parish council were aware of her upcoming “ordination,” but, as will be seen, no straining will be required.
By now, some patterns will have emerged. One is the influence, among liberal Catholics in the San Francisco Bay Area, of Victoria Rue. In addition to serving as a conduit for women’s excommunication, Rue has actually been invited to address students in at least one Catholic High School, the Convent of the Sacred Heart in San Francisco. Another is the presence of women on their way to excommunication who at the same time are serving in teaching ministries of the Catholic Church. That is not limited to the Bay Area. At the same September 2011 event where Maureen Mancuso underwent her “diaconate ordination,” she was joined by a woman named Jennifer O’Malley. In 2012 Ms. O’Malley was “ordained priest.” Prior to that, under the notorious Cardinal Roger Mahony, O’Malley had worked as a parish-level coordinator of youth ministry and on the Ministry to Gay and Lesbian Catholics for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. She received a “Lumen Christi” award from the archdiocese in October of 2011—after she had been excommunicated. Like Rue, O’Malley is an open homosexual.
When Catholics in parish-level teaching ministries excommunicate themselves from the Roman Catholic Church, it’s probably time to ask some questions about their parishes. The previously mentioned Playing with Fire blog post of January 18, 2012 documented the welcome extended by Father Brian Joyce to groups and persons supporting women’s ordination. As for St. John of God, it’s home to the Catholic Women’s Advocacy Group. The church has allowed the group to host events on its property. While the group’s statement of principles never makes an outright demand for women’s ordination, instead proceeding by euphemism (“Women and men are called to equal roles in Church ministry… Support women as they work toward full acceptance in the Catholic Church….Speak out in favor of women’s rights in church and society”) there’s no doubt as to their true position: the mailing address of the organization is the same as that of Maria Eitz.
The open homosexuality of both Victoria Rue and Jennifer O’Malley indicates some overlap between homosexuality as an identity and the desire for women’s ordination.
Communion is the monthly newsletter of a group called Catholics for Equality– an advocacy group for same-sex “marriage.” The May 2013 issue also announced the Eitz ordination: “Roman Catholic Womenpriests and Sophia in Trinity invite you to attend the ordination of Deacon Maria Eitz to the priesthood , etc. etc…” The same issue of Communion contained an article by Deacon Brian Bromberger. Until recently Bromberger served as Deacon at St. John of God. His time there overlapped with that of Maria Eitz—as of June 28, 2012, both Eitz and Bromberger were listed as members of the St. John of God liturgy committee. The same issue contained a blurb for the upcoming Dignity USA convention, which will take place from July 4-7. Dignity is no longer allowed to meet on the property of the archdiocese of San Francisco. Their SF chapter meets two blocks from St. John of God at the Seventh Avenue Presbyterian Church. A September 29, 2005, an article in the homosexualist Bay Area Reporter on Dignity contained a statement from Maurice Healy, then communications director for the Archdiocese of San Francisco, explaining why the group is not allowed to meet on Archdiocesan property: “The position on homosexual acts is pretty well founded…It won’t change until Dignity drops their rationale, which is contrary to Catholic teaching.” The same article listed a man named Paul Riofski as a leader of DignitySF. That was 7 ½ years ago. Today, Riofski serves as co-chair of the organization. Riofski also currently sits on the St. John of God liturgy committee, as he did during Eitz’s tenure. He is also listed as the music director at St. John of God.