New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, although a cradle Catholic herself, continued her assault on the Catholic Church when she compared the institution's treatment of women to the burdensome life endured by women in Muslim Saudi Arabia. Remember Saudi Arabia? That's the Oil Kingdom with its fingers around the neck of oil-guzzling Americans that beheads women for adultery, forbids them to drive automobiles, and compels them to wear wraith-like full body coverings.
Reponding to a notification from the Congregation on the Doctrine of the Faith, a Vatican office that serves as a clearinghouse for writings by theologians who claim to be Catholic, that a book published by Sr. Margaret Farley is “not consistent with authentic Catholic theology." According to the New York Times, a newspaper apparently obsessed with Catholics, Farley's controversial book Just Love: A Framework for Christian Sexual Ethics, "attempted to present a theological rationale for same-sex relationships, masturbation and remarriage after divorce." Oddly enough, not only Catholic teachings, but also those founded in other Christian communions, Judaism, and Islam, all condemn sexuality outside the banns of marriage between a man and a woman.
Dowd responded in a June 6 column entitled, "Is Pleasure a Sin?" While she bypassed long-standing theological and moral foundations of the Vatican's criticism of Farley's book, Dowd launched into calumny when she referred to the notification as a "thuggish" attack by a male hierarchy against women, including her comparison of the Church to benighted Saudi Arabia. Here is an excerpt:
Just the latest chapter in the Vatican’s thuggish crusade to push American nuns -- and all Catholic women -- back into moldy subservience.
Even for a church that moves glacially, this was classic. “Just Love: a Framework for Christian Sexual Ethics,” by Sister Margaret Farley -- a 77-year-old professor emeritus at Yale’s Divinity School, a past president of the Catholic Theological Society of America and an award-winning scholar -- came out in 2006.
The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, which seems as hostile to women as the Saudi Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, spent years pondering it, then censured it on March 30 but didn’t publicly release the statement until Monday.
The denunciation of Sister Farley’s book is based on the fact that she deals with the modern world as it is. She refuses to fall in line with a Vatican rigidly clinging to an inbred, illusory world where men rule with no backtalk from women, gays are deviants, the divorced can’t remarry, men and women can’t use contraception, masturbation is a grave disorder and celibacy is enshrined, even as a global pedophilia scandal rages.