Twenty-five years ago, Donohoe joined the Episcopal Church because it has, since 1977, allowed women to be ordained. Even as an Episcopalian, she, a television producer, was not interested in ordination. But her “call” became more apparent. “It was a call I could no longer refuse,” she told the Tribune. She was ordained in November 2005. “I asked God to drop the two-by-four, and she did. Being able to help people celebrate their most holy and sacred moments within the ritual of the church is very much what I felt called to do by God and by people.”
The number of female clergy in the U.S. is steadily growing. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau counted 53,000 female clergy nationwide. They make up 15 percent of the clergy in San Mateo County, according to the Tribune.
Some have said a disproportionate number of Protestant female clergy are made up of former Catholics. Do they leave because the Catholic Church forbids women’s ordination? Examining this question, Paul Perl, writing in the Dec. 22, 2005 edition of the journal Sociology of Religion, said, based on the statistics (and the latest were from 1994), it is impossible to judge why, but a significantly larger percentage of female than male converts from the Catholic Church entered the Protestant ministry -- 5.1% as opposed to 2.5 percent.
If the pull to get ordained is stronger for a woman that it is to remain a faithful Catholic, true to the Magisterium of the Church, I have to wonder: Where is the pull coming from?