Santa Clara University theology professor says Church had long history of ordaining women that ended because of “virulent misogyny”. Gary Macy, a professor of theology at Jesuit-run Santa Clara University, told attendees at a Monday night lecture at the Vanderbilt University Divinity School in Nashville, Tennessee, there is little room for historical doubt that women were ordained in the Catholic Church until about the end of the 12th century.
According to Macy, until about the mid-12th century, women were ordained as deaconesses, served as bishops, distributed Communion and even heard confessions. “Women were considered to be as ordained as any man… they were considered clergy,” he said.
By the middle of the 12th century a profound change occurred in the Church’s understanding of the concept of ordination, largely as a consequence of political considerations as the Church sought to protect its property from feudal lords by inventing “a separate clerical class.” Theologians came to view women as “metaphysically different from other people,” so that, by the mere fact of being female, women were considered incapable of being ordained. Canonists adopted the position, “Women were never ordained, are not ordained now, and can never be ordained,” said Macy. ..... he change in Church thinking on women’s ordination poses a dilemma for theologians, said Macy, because, if the ordinations of women during the first 1200 years of the Church were “not real,” then “the men weren’t ordained either.” .... He said the shift in thinking on the question occurred as the consequence of a “virulent misogyny” influenced by Aristotle, who held that “all women are mistakes.”
California Catholic Daily
The borderline case of hermaphrodites:“As to a hermaphrodite, if he has a beard and always wants to engage in manly activities and not in those of women, and if he always seeks the company of men and not of women, it is a sign that the masculine sex predominates in him and then he can be a witness where a woman is not allowed, namely with regard to a last will and testament, and he also can be ordained a priest. If he however lacks a beard and always wants to be with women and be involved in feminine works, the judgment is that the feminine sex predominates in him and then he should not be admitted to giving any witness wherever women are not admitted, namely at a last will and testament, neither can he be ordained then because a woman cannot receive holy orders. ” - On Causa 27, quaestio 1, chapter 23, ad v. Women Priests