The Ordained Members

Statement on Apostolic Succession
 

The ordinations of Roman Catholic Womenpriests are valid because of our apostolic succession within the Roman Catholic Church. The principal consecrating Roman Catholic male bishops who ordained our first women bishops are bishops with apostolic succession within the Roman Catholic Church. Therefore, our bishops validly ordain deacons, priests and bishops.  Consequently, all qualified candidates, including baptized ministers and priests from other Christian traditions, who are presented to our bishops for ordination are ordained by the laying on of hands in apostolic succession in the Roman Catholic Church.
 
 

Meet the Roman Catholic Womenpriests-USA, Inc. Members

Bishops
  Olivia Doko Andrea Johnson
  Joan Houk Nancy Meyer
    Regina Nicolosi

Priests
  Maureen Andrew Marellen Mayers
  Kathleen Bellefeuille-Rice Marybeth McBryan
  Corene Besetzny Maria McClain
  Beverly Bingle Elsie McGrath
  Ruth Broeski Judith McKloskey
  Gloria Carpeneto Marty Meyer-Gad
  Dagmar Celeste Diane O'Donnell
  Theresa Novak Chabot Jennifer O'Malley
  Mary Grace Crowley-Koch Ann Penick
  Juanita Cordero Maryrose Petrizzo
  Marie David Bertha Popeney
  Sandra DeMaster Kathy Redig
  Eileen DiFranco Chava Redonnet
  Suzanne Dunn Mary Ellen Robertson
  Alexandra Dyer Victoria Rue
  Maria Eitz Pat Sandall
  Chris Fahrenbach Irene Senn
  Paula Hoeffer Martha Sherman
  Rose Marie Hudson Mary Frances Smith
  Alice Iaquinta Rod Stephens
  Alta Jacko Bernadyne Sykora
  Caryl Johnson Suzanne Thiel
  Mary Frances Keldermans Michael Tompkins
  Ann Poelking Klonowski Toni Tortorilla
  Louise Josephson a.k.a. Catacomb Helen Moorman Umphrey
  Kathleen Kunster Kathy Vandenberg
  Mary Kay Kusner Marilyn Van Veersen
  Patricia LaRosa Gabriella Velardi-Ward
  Lillian Lewis Monique Venne
  Eda Lorello Jane Via
  Jeannette Bertalan Love Diane Smith Whalen
  Maureen Mancuso Linda Wilcox
  Jean Marchant Barbara Zeman
  Margaret Mary a.k.a. Catacomb Catacomb Midwest Priest 1
  Barbara Mattus Catacomb Midwest Priest 2
   

Deacons
  Kathleen Bean Donna Marie Shaw
  Penny Donovan Donnieau Snyder
  Theresa Gregory Joanna Truelson
  Josephine Petermeier Cynthia Yoshitomi
  Mary Ryan  

In Memoriam

  Janine Denomme - Womanpriest, RCWP-USA, Great Waters Region
  Iris Müller - Womanpriest, RCWP, Europe-West
  Mary Ann Schoettly - Womanpriest, RCWP-USA, Eastern Region
  Mary Styne - Womanpriest, RCWP-USA, Midwest Region


    RCWP-USA Ordained Members
(Listed in Alphabetical Order)
 
 
Kathleen Bellefeuille-Rice
Kathleen Bellefeuille-Rice
Ordained
womandeacon 2013
womanpriest 2014
RCWP-USA
Kathleen Bellefeuille-Rice has felt called to the priesthood since she was seven years old. She received her early formation in radical Catholicism from being a Catholic Worker, from working in her large vegetable garden, and from raising her two children.  Years of training as a catechist, specializing in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, strengthened her love of scripture, liturgy, sacraments, and celebration. In 2013 she received her Masters in Religious Education from Graduate Theological Foundation. Currently, she is with Holy Wisdom Inclusive Catholic Community in Olympia, WA. She spends her free time doing foot care with the homeless, cooking dinners at a local soup kitchen, and hanging out with her husband Dave.
   
 
Corene Besetzny
Corene Besetzny
Ordained
womandeacon 2012
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Corene Besetzny "My journey toward priesthood has been life-long. After working in the Peace Corps in Liberia, West Africa, I completed graduate programs in teaching and anthropology. While raising my family of three adopted children, two from Korea and one from Honduras, I was active in parish ministry for many years in the areas of marriage preparation, family life, RCIA and social justice. During this time I was an active Lay Franciscan. More recently I received a Masters of Arts in Women’s Studies: Religion, Theology, and Ministry from United Theological Seminary in New Brighton, MN. I completed a Spiritual Direction Preparation Program at the Franciscan Spirituality Center in La Crosse, WI. Currently, I preside at worship at the Fairview Seminary Home in Red Wing, MN. I also assist at the House Masses in my community. I have been widowed for two years and now work at the Red Wing Health Center where I minister to the elderly. On April 15, 2012 I was ordained a Roman Catholic woman deacon in Indianapolis, IN."
 
Beverly Bingle
Beverly Bingle
Ordained
womandeacon 2012
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Beverly Bingle, after serial careers in teaching, politics, government, and business, served in Catholic parishes in Ohio and Michigan as a Pastoral Associate, Director of Religious Education, and Pastoral Assistant from 1991 until her retirement in 2011.  Bev made private vows in 1989; she is an “urban hermit,” striving to live out the Gospel mandates of frugality, celibacy, and service on a half-acre plot in Toledo’s inner city.  She aims at becoming a “locavore,” sharing the produce of her large garden, flock of Barred Rock chickens, and beehive with friends and neighbors.  Bev holds a B.A. (The Ohio State University) and M.A. (Bowling Green State University) in English, an M.A. in Pastoral Ministry (Marygrove College) and a Doctor of Ministry (Ecumenical Theological Seminary).  E-Mail:  urbanhermit@catholicweb.com
 
Dagmar Braun Celeste
Dagmar Braun Celeste
Ordained
Danube 7
womandeacon 2002
womanpriest 2002
RCWP-USA
Dagmar Braun Celeste, MA, in Theology and Addiction Counseling, BA in Women Studies and Public Policy, APP, is an experienced Life Balance coach.  Her autobiography, We Can Do Together / Impressions Of A Recovering Feminist First Lady was published by Kent State University Press, 2002.  She was a board member of the Women’s Ordination Conference and Mary’s Pence, First Lady of Ohio twenty years ago, taught at Kent State University and published numerous articles.  She is active in the hospice movement and lives at "The Tyrian Oasis," a hermitage in Cleveland's Inner City where she offers retreats, ritual celebrations and sacramental opportunities. Website: www.tyrian.net and email: celeste@tyrian.net

 
 
Ruth Broeski
Ruth Broeski
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Ruth Broeski takes the Spirit seriously. As often happens when the Breath of God is in control, this has led to many different turns on the path of her life. When young, Ruth committed for a time to convent life in Los Angeles. Later, motivated by an abiding desire to serve people, she studied psychology and theology, worked as a high school teacher, as a deputy sheriff, and sojourned for a few years on an island in Washington state. Most recently, Ruth received an MA in spirituality, which included study of everything from Christian mystics to mandalas to new consciousness. Ruth lives in Portland, Oregon, where she is a spiritual director.
 
Gloria Ray-Carpeneto
Gloria Ray-Carpeneto
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Gloria Ray-Carpeneto, D.Min., Ph.D., is a spiritual director, labyrinth facilitator, Reiki Master, writer, and teacher. Growing out of her work as a certified massage therapist, Gloria conducted her doctoral dissertation research on the subject of women & embodied spirituality. Growing out of this research, she has ministered primarily with women – individually and in groups – for nearly twenty years. Gloria has served as Pastoral Associate for Holistic Health Ministry in two Roman Catholic faith communities, as well as instructor in Psychology, Nursing, and Education in local colleges. Currently, she serves as Executive Director of the FRIENDS of the Northeast Interfaith Peace Garden  www.friendsnipg.org a community garden and labyrinth located in an urban setting, and dedicated to interfaith peacemaking efforts. Together with RCWP priest Andrea Johnson, Gloria co-pastors the Living Water Community in Baltimore MD. Gloria was ordained a Roman Catholic woman priest in Boston MA on July 20, 2008, and lives in Baltimore MD with Myles, her husband of thirty-nine years. Myles & Gloria are the parents of Robin and Penelope, and grandparents to Prema and Uriah. Gloria may be reached at gcarpeneto@comcast.net
 
 
Theresa Novak Chabot

Theresa Novak Chabot
Ordained
deacon 2009
priest 2010

RCWP-USA

Theresa Novak Chabot holds a Master of Arts in Theology (Pastoral Ministry/Spirituality) from St. Michael's College in Colchester, Vermont. After several years of serving in a variety of parish ministries, Theresa answered the call to priesthood to minister to those who are disillusioned with the Church but still long to be fed spiritually. She serves the Church of the Holy Spirit, a Catholic Welcoming Community of Hope, in Manchester, New Hampshire, with weekly liturgies and the sacraments in addition to a wedding ministry. Her hope lies in a Church where diversity is celebrated and all are welcome at the Eucharistic table in the loving spirit of Jesus Christ. Theresa was formerly Director of Development for NH Catholic Charities, an executive director of a chamber of commerce, and has worked in fundraising, public relations, and development for non-profits and businesses. In addition to her ministry, she is a speech-language pathologist for a public school district. She and her husband, Gary, reside in Manchester, NH. She can be reached at tnovakchabot@comcast.net
 
Juanita Cordero

Juanita Cordero
Ordained
womandeacon 2006

womanpriest 2007

RCWP-USA

Juanita Cordero has an MA in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College, a Masters in Theology and a Doctor of Ministry with a emphasis in Feminist Pastoral Studies from Global Ministries University. She teaches at De Anza College in Cupertino, California in the Child Development/Education Department, and serves as a nurse for the Children’s Center. Her present ministries include teaching, alternative healing, visiting the sick and elderly. She pastors a house church, the Magdala Catholic Community, in Los Gatos, CA. She and her husband Don (a former Jesuit, and a married priest who passed away in 2007) raised five children and were involved in liturgy and music planning for more than 30 years. She can be reached at: joredroc@sbcglobal.net
 
Mary Grace Crowley-Koch

Mary Grace Crowley-Koch
Ordained
womandeacon 2010

womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA

Mary Grace Crowley-Koch began her walk towards priesthood at age 4 when she engaged her nursery school playmates in Eucharistic celebrations. She was taught by the Adrian Dominicans for 12 years and entered that community. While completing her MA in Theology at St. John’s University in Collegeville and serving as a pastoral associate at several parishes she continued to feel the nudge of the Holy Spirit towards ordination. After teaching and seeing her children, Angela and Brian, move onwards toward college she was able to continue her pastoral ministry as a hospice chaplain. In this ministry she again felt the validation of her call to priestly ministry from the persons she served. On her journey towards priesthood she initiated a small faith community which has been meeting monthly for 15 years. For the same amount of time, she and her married priest husband, Ron, ministered to couples with a connection to the Roman Catholic church who would like to have their wedding celebration outside of the RC church building venue. She believes in God’s constant call ‘to do a new thing” and to share your God given gifts with all you meet as you dance together with all on your journey.
 
back to top  
Marie David
Marie David
Ordained
womandeacon 2005
womanpriest 2005
RCWP-USA
Marie David, M.Ed., Reiki Master/Teacher, has over 20 years experience in Catholic education, spirituality and parish ministry.  Marie and her husband, Jim, are directors of Evensong by the Sea Retreat & Spirituality Center in Harwich Port, Massachusetts (www.evensongretreat.com). Marie is the mother of two grown daughters, Martha and Elizabeth. Her ministries include women's spirituality and wellness, Reiki treatments and training, spiritual direction and retreat work along with maintenance of sacred space at Evensong for retreatants to come away and renew their friendship with God. marie@evensongretreat.com
 
Sandra DeMaster
Sandra DeMaster
Ordained
womandeacon 2008
womanpriest 2009
RCWP-USA
Sandra DeMaster is the facilitator of “Bridges,” an interdenominational ministry with the mission of providing opportunities for women and men to deepen their spirituality through spiritual direction, study groups and directed retreat experiences.  Although she has earned an M.Div. degree and served for several years as a pastoral associate for two priestless parishes, Sandra counts as her most valuable preparation for pastoral ministry her 40 years of service as a Minister of Domestic Affairs.  She lives with her husband in McMinnville, OR on a country acre where she delights in welcoming friends old and new, her six grown children and a growing brood of grandchildren.  Her leadership of “Bridges” is inspired and renewed by engagement with gardening, reading, writing and contemplative prayer. To view more pictures of her deacon ordination please click on Sandra’s Deaconate ordination.
 
Eileen DiFranco
Eileen McCafferty DiFranco
Ordained
womandeacon 2006
womanpriest 2006
RCWP-USA
Eileen McCafferty DiFranco,  R.N., M.A.Ed., M.Div., is a writer, community volunteer, and a registered nurse who works at a busy urban high school in Philadelphia.  Ordained a priest in Pittsburgh in 2006, she serves as the pastor of The Community of Saint Mary Magdalene which meets each Sunday in a suburb of Philadelphia. Eileen is the first woman priest to preside at Dignity, Philadelphia. She also has a very busy wedding ministry. Eileen, and her husband Larry, have a daughter, three sons, and two grandchildren. EMDiFranco@aol.com
 
 
Penny Donovan
Penny Donovan
Ordained
womandeacon 2014
RCWP-USA
Penny Donovan first experienced her call to priesthood as a young girl growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area. But, as with so many, she soon learned that the Vatican frowned upon some of God’s choices! She is a previous member of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, was a teacher, assistant principal and principal.  She loves science and was worked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to develop "cutting edge" science curriculum by working alongside NASA scientists. While this is heady and exciting, it also served to deepen my prayer, and my appreciation of the incredible creativity of God. She is currently an associate member of a Dominican Community and says that “Discovering RCWP in 2012, has been an unbelievable new journey, I relish the challenges and blessings as the path opens before me."
 
Olivia Doko
Olivia Doko
Ordained
womandeacon 2006
womanpriest 2006
womanbishop 2010
RCWP-USA
Olivia Doko, MA, OSB, Cam. Oblate, is the founder and director of Olive Tree Ministries through which she provides spiritual retreats and workshops.  She has a private Holy Listening practice, offering directed retreats and spiritual direction, with a focus on contemplative prayer, to individuals and small groups.  Qualified as a pastoral consultant through Loyola University, New Orleans, Olivia holds and MA in Theology (with an emphasis in Adult Christian Community Development) from Regis University, Denver. She has served the Western Region of RCWP-USA, Inc. as Administrator and as Program Coordinator; and currently, she is serving that regional community as its bishop. She and her husband, Slavo, have been married 49 years. They have two married sons and three grandsons. email: mdoko@dslextreme.com website: www.olive-tree-ministries.com
   
 
Suzanne Dunn
Suzanne Dunn
Ordained
womandeacon 2008
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Suzanne Dunn, sfcc (Sister for Christian Community) is Pastor of the Church of the Beatitudes. The Church of the Beatitudes meets every Sunday at the First Congregational Church-United Church of Christ - at 2101 State St., Santa Barbara, Ca. Suzanne has a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and maintains a small private practice.  In addition, she is a spiritual director and co-facilitator of the Santa Barbara/Ventura Chapter of the Contemplative Ministry Outreach. She is a trained presenter of the Introductory  Workshop in Centering Prayer and conducts Silent Saturdays and three and five day retreats in Centering Prayer. Suzanne holds an MA in Religious Studies from Seattle University and has studied with Alexander Shaia, Ph.D. in the Journey of Quadratos: Beyond the Biography of Jesus.  Suzanne lives out her religious life with a Sister of Notre Dame in Carpinteria, Ca. She is currently an Assistant Program Coordinator for the Western region of RCWP-USA. e-mail: srd41lis@yahoo.com
   
 
Theresa Gregory
Theresa Gregory
Ordained
womandeacon 2014
RCWP-USA
Theresa Gregory “My life-long passion is to serve. This was instilled in me by the example of myparents. Growing up, our table and home were never too crowded that one or more could not be added. Our doors and hearts were always open to the needs of others. I am happy to continue this way of life in central Idaho.” Teresa has served in the Roman Catholic Church as a lay person for 30 years, the last six of those years as the Parish Life Director of a parish. She has served both in the Archdiocese of Seattle and the Boise Diocese and received her Masters of Divinity from Seattle University in 1991. After many years of discernment she followed her heart and decided to pursue ordination with the RCWP. Teresa was ordained a deacon on September 6, 2014 with six other incredibly gifted and compassionate women. “I hope to help form and reform the Church by responding to the desires of people, especially Catholics, who long for a Church welcoming to all people.” She lives in Idaho with her long-time partner.
 
 
Joan Clark Houk
Joan Clark Houk
Ordained
womandeacon 2006
womanpriest 2006
womanbishop 2009
RCWP-USA
Rev. Joan Clark Houk is a careful and cheerful listener to the movement of the Holy Spirit in the world and in her life. She and her husband, John, are life partners and occasional partners in ministry. They have raised six children, and are proud great-grandparents. Involved in parish ministry for over 30 years, Joan had been Pastoral Director of two Roman Catholic parishes without priest pastors before her ordination. Her education includes: B.A. in Education, St. Martin's College; M.S. in Conflict Management, George Mason University; M.Div., University of Notre Dame. Joan's web site: www.JoanClarkHouk.com. Email: jhoukmdiv@mac.com
 
Rose Marie Hudson
Rose Marie Hudson
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2007
RCWP-USA

Rose Marie (Ree) Hudson, womanpriest, is co-pastor of
Therese of Divine Peace Inclusive Community. Ree has many years of ministerial experience beginning in the Methodist Church and continuing in the Roman Catholic Church. Ree has theology degrees from Scarritt College for Christian Workers, was certified in Pastoral ministries by the Archdiocese of St. Louis, and received a Masters of Pastoral Studies from Loyola of New Orleans. Ree is the regional administrator of the Great Waters Region in RCWP. She is a certified minister in the Federation of Christian Ministries, a member of CTA-USA, of WOC, and is involved with women's groups and ecumenical groups. Ree is married to Bob Hudson, has four children and 11grandchildren. She can be contacted at reehud@sbcglobal.net website: www.thereseofdivinepeace.org
 
 
Alice Iaquinta
Alice Marie Iaquinta
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2007
RCWP-USA
Alice Marie Iaquinta, M.Div., ABD for Ph.D., M.A., B.A., A.A.  "My ordination is an act of surrender to the Spirit and obedience to God, not an act of defiance of the church. I love the Roman Catholic Church and want to see the reforms of the Vatican II Council fulfilled. This is the 'new springtime' that Pope John XXIII and the Council recognized and we are the 'signs of the times.'" She has taught college for 40 years. Alice became aware of her call to the priesthood after graduatinrg with honors from St. Francis Seminary, Milwaukee, WI. Ministry includes teaching ethics, offering spiritual direction, marriage preparation and weddings, adult faith formation in workshops and study groups. Alice and a married priest are pastors of the inclusive Vatican II Eucharistic Catholic community, Mary of Magdala, Apostle to the Apostles Catholic Church in Milwaukee, WI.
 
Alta Jacko
Alta Jacko
Ordained
womandeacon 2008
womanpriest 2009
RCWP-USA
Alta Jacko I was born on Good Friday, April 6, 1928 in Chicago, Il. I lived on the Southside of Chicago with my mother and brother. I came from a loving and religious family, even though we had little in the way of material things, in the way of family values we were wealthy. My mother loved my brother and me very much and made sure we understood that. I earned a bachelor degree in Education and a Master Degree in Music Education, from the Chicago Conservatory of Music, a Master Degree in Pastoral Studies from Loyola University of Chicago, and a Master of Jurisprudence in Child and Family Law from Loyola University of Chicago. I completed my student teaching at the University of Chicago. I have eight children, four girls and four boys, sixteen grand children and four great-grand children. amjacko@netzero.net
 
Andrea Johnson
Andrea M. Johnson
Ordained
womandeacon 2005
womanpriest 2007
womanbishop 2009
RCWP-USA
Andrea M. Johnson, M. Div., a former program officer in international education exchange with the Senior Fulbright Scholars’ Program, has worked for many years, and in several dioceses, as a religious educator at the adult and secondary levels. In the 1980’s, she served for two years as a parish life director in a priestless parish of the military diocese. Always active in her parish communities, she served from 2004-2006 on the pastoral council of her current parish, as president during the second year of her term. An active member of the Women’s Ordination Conference since 1984, she served that organization as executive director from 1996-2000. Andrea’s educational background includes a BA in French from Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, Indiana, and a MA in diplomacy and international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. With an M.Div. from Global Ministries University, her particular interest is ministry with marginalized and underserved Catholics. amjohnson1969@gmail.com
 
Caryl Johnson
Caryl Conroy Johnson
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA
Caryl Conroy Johnson, is a spiritual director and offers retreats and grief workshops. She is a member of the St. Mary Magdalene Community, Drexel Hill, PA, where she is involved in worship, service to the homeless, and theological reflection groups. She is also involved in interfaith work. For 15 years Caryl served as Pastoral Associate at St. Francis of Assisi Church, Springfield, PA working in bereavement, ministry to the sick, youth ministry, worship, and interfaith events. Prior to that she was a CYO basketball coach and was involved in liturgical ministries and marriage preparation. She has a M. A. in Religious Studies, St. Charles Seminary and a M. S. in Spiritual Direction, Neumann University. Caryl is happily married with 3 adult children.. ccjohnson2236@aol.com
   
 
Ann Klonowski
Ann Poelking Klonowski
Ordained
womandeacon 2013
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA

Ann Poelking Klonowski is co-pastor of the Community of St. Bridget, an inclusive Catholic community that gathers for liturgy every Saturday at 5 pm at the Brecksville UCC, 23 Public Square, Brecksville, Ohio 44141. Ann is a teacher and has taught people from preschoolers to adults. She earned a degree in education from Ohio State University and a master’s degree in religious studies from John Carroll University. She has been active in her church since her college days when she and her guitar were dragged to the front of the church. She and her spouse, Alan, have been members of Christian Life Community since the early days of their marriage. It has fed their marriage and their individual spiritual development. They are the parents of two adult children of whom they are ridiculously proud. They have two incredibly intelligent granddaughters, whom Ann was privileged to baptize. She lives in Cleveland, Ohio. Ann can be contacted through her community website: http://www.communityofstbridget.org/

 
Kathleen Kunster
Kathleen Kunster
Ordained
womandeacon 2005
womanpriest 2006
RCWP-USA
Kathleen Kunster, M.Div., M.A., Psy.D., was ordained a priest in Pittsburgh in 2005. She earned her Master of Divinity at the Franciscan School of Theology, Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, CA, and her doctorate in clinical psychology at California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco. Ministries include a pastoral counseling practice through Church of the Roses, Santa Rosa, CA, spiritual direction, and psychotherapy as a Registered Psychological Assistant (CA) in a rural community mental health clinic. Dr. Kunster was born in Florida, but has lived in California most of her life, most recently in (West) Sonoma County, CA. She delights in her daughter and son-in law, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. Katknst@sbcglobal.net
 
Mary Kay Kusner
Mary Kay Kusner
Ordained
womandeacon 2009
womanpriest 2010
RCWP-USA
Mary Kay Kusner, MA, CC has been a chaplain for over 20 years.  During this time, she witnessed the openness of people to her as a woman minister.  When she graduated from Boston College with her Master’s in Pastoral Ministry in 1987, many of her peers were leaving the Catholic church to become ordained.  At that time, Mary Kay said, “I want my presence to speak louder than my absence.”  She has remained a faithful Catholic and currently, she serves as the chaplain for the Palliative Care Program at University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics.  She is skilled in providing support to those in crisis and at the end of life.  It has been her great joy to officiate at weddings, baptisms. and in a small faith community called Full Circle.  Mary Kay has four children and has been married for 26 years.  Her first book, Upside-down and Backwards: A Mother’s Story will be published this fall and be available on Amazon.com.
 
Patricia LaRosa
Patricia LaRosa
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA
Patricia LaRosa prefers to be called “Patti,” as it reminds her of her family of origin, a tight knit Italian American family with lots of aunts, uncles and cousins. She spent 22 years in a married relationship, raising two daughters. Patti recognized her call to ordained ministry in 1989 and pursued it by working toward a Master of Arts in Theology while working as a Pastoral Associate in a Rochester, NY parish. She also worked in hospice and loved the hours spent with families and caring for their dying loved ones. She spent 4 years exploring the possibility of ordination through the Episcopal Church, but discovered her Catholic roots and commitment while attending Union Theological Seminary in Manhattan. She graduated with a Master of Divinity in 2007, and became affiliated with Roman Catholic Womenpriests during her two years in Manhattan. Patti currently lives in Rochester, NY and is active in her home parish of Spiritus Christi Church. She also works with a newly forming inclusive community called Spiritus Christi Buffalo.
 
 
Jeanette Love
Jeannette Bertalan Love
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2010
RCWP-USA
Jeannette Love was ordained a deacon on Aug 28, 2010 and a Roman Catholic Womanpriest on September 12, 2010. During her years of study as a religious sister for nineteen years she has been trained in theology and in addition studied a year of theology at Immaculate Conception Seminary, Darlington School of Theology in New Jersey. She was previously ordained in the Catholic Apostolic Church of Antioch (not under Rome) and served the Archbishops and the development of the Church for eleven years. Jeannette attended the University of Creation Spirituality founded by Matthew Fox in Oakland, CA through which she received a Masters degree awarded by Naropa University in Boulder, CO. At present Jeannette assists Suzanne Dunn in serving at the Catholic Church of the Beatitudes and works part time for the church as a Marketing and Membership Consultant. She also offers spiritual direction, facilitates a weekly Centering Prayer Group, volunteers at VNA and Hospice and is commissioned to give the Centering Prayer introductory workshop. Jeannette resides in Santa Barbara..
 
Jean Marie Marchant
Jean Marie Marchant
Ordained
womandeacon 2005
womanpriest 2005
RCWP-USA
Jean Marie Marchant, M.Div., D.Min., ordained to the priesthood on July 25, 2005 on the St. Lawrence Seaway, holds a Masters of Divinity Degree from Weston Jesuit School of Theology and the Doctor of Ministry Degree in Pastoral Counseling from the Graduate Theological Foundation. Licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist, Jean is a Reiki Master, Certified Chaplain and holds a Certificate in Spiritual Direction. She is the former Director of Health Care Ministry for the Archdiocese of Boston, and as an ordained priest in the Roman Catholic Womanpriest movement, her ministry of pastoral care, counseling and spiritual direction is now enriched by her sacramental ministry. She has ministered over the past 30 years to people navigating a myriad of challenges and transitions across the spectrum of life, primarily as an interfaith hospice chaplain where it has been her gift to accompany people living and dying with HIV/AIDS, cancer and other life threatening illnesses, adults facing issues of spiritual and emotional health, and those grieving the death of a loved one. Her years in the early 1990's as chaplain at The Hospice at Mission Hill, a residence for people with HIV/AIDS, deepened her awareness of the concerns of those in the LGBTQ community, and this sacred witness has profoundly informed her ministry. As a bereaved parent, with a special place in her heart for grieving children, Jean co-founded The Children's Room: A Center for Grieving Children &Teenagers. The mother of two adult daughters, and grandmother of five, Jean has a passion for justice and for empowering women and men in their search for wholeness. Jean and her husband of 25 years, Rev. Dr. Ron Hindelang are the Co-Pastors of The Spirit of Life: A Catholic Community of Justice and Joy, a Eucharistic Community that is inclusive, open, affirming and interactive, deeply committed to being a people of 'Justice and Joy' where all are truly welcome at the table! Visit us at:  www.SpiritofLifeCommunity.org
 
 
Maureen Mancuso
Maureen Mancuso
Ordained
womandeacon 2011
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Maureen Mancuso  received her M.Div. from the Jesuit School of Theology at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA. In addition she holds a teaching credential in English and is working on her Ph.D. in World Religions. Maureen felt called to priesthood at an early age though she tended to dismiss the idea, for as a cradle Catholic it seemed an improbable path. Active in parish ministry as parish council president, a member of peace and justice, a musician and a member of the St. Vincent DePaul society the call to priestly ordination was re-illuminated. Maureen has been the Director of RCIA, a hospital chaplain, a retreat director, liturgist, and has lead workshops at the diocesan and national levels. As a Christian feminist Maureen actively supports equality for women in the Roman Catholic Church and is a member of CTA, WOC, and the Women of Magdala. Presently, Maureen teaches high school English full-time, and she divides her time as a deacon for both the Mary Magdala community in Los Gatos and the Namaste community in Orinda, CA. In addition she continues with her PhD studies. The focus of her research for her dissertation is an interfaith exploration of religious empowerment of women in the Abrahamic tradition.
 
 
Marellen Mayers
Marellen Mayers
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA
Marellen Mayers grew up the eldest of five children living in Baltimore MD and Chicago IL. Her ministry in the Roman Catholic Church began with religious life from 1975 to 1980. For the past 37 years Marellen has worked in the fields of social work, health, education and ministry. From 1988 to 2010, her professional life was as a Director of Campus Ministry, dedicated to working with middle school, high school, and undergraduate students. Marellen also taught Theology on the high school level and served as a department chair. She earned a Master’s degree in Holistic Spirituality from Chestnut Hill College. Marellen is a Spiritual Director having studied at Shalem Institute. Her expertise continues in the field of retreat work; she is a certified Facilitator for Bereavement support groups; and she works as a certified Reiki II practitioner. She and her husband, Craig Mayers, were married in 1986 and reside in Forest Hill, Maryland. Marellen can be reached at marellenm1@aol.com
 
   
Marybeth McBryan
Marybeth McBryan
Ordained
womandeacon 2009
womanpriest 2009
RCWP-USA
Marybeth McBryan, Marybeth has been heavily involved in parish ministries in the Archdiocese of St. Louis for nearly 30 years. A mother and grandmother, she is a former teacher in both parochial and public schools, and has also served on the Board of Education of the St. Louis Public Schools. Marybeth has a Master’s degree in education with secondary degrees in administration and counseling; she has accrued 40+ hours in theology, liturgy and religious education. She is currently a part of the music ministry and serves as a priest on the ministerial staff at Therese of Divine Peace. mbmcb@hotmail.com  
website: www.thereseofdivinepeace.org
 
   
Maria McClain
Maria Thornton McClain
Ordained
womandeacon 2011
womanpriest 2012
RCWP-USA
Maria Thornton McClain is the leader of St. Mary of Magdala Catholic Community, in Indianapolis. She didn't seek ordination but her passion for justice, especially for people on the margins, led her to RCWP. She has an M.A. in Religious Studies and a Certificate in Pastoral Studies. She grew up mainly in Buffalo, NY, joined the Sisters of Mercy there and taught in Catholic schools. After leaving the convert, she moved to Indianapolis in 1977 to take a position as parish DRE. She met her husband, Ed, was Coordinator of Boards of Education, wrote and edited publications for the NCEA; later served as consultant to religious and nonprofit organizations until she retired. She helped found a recovery home for women with drug addictions and served on that board for 11 years. She is a Toastmaster, loves to explore new places and ideas and is involved in ecumenical efforts as part of her ministry. Her e-mail address is: .mmtmcclain795@sbcglobal.net
 
   
Elsie McGrath
Elsie Hainz McGrath
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2007
RCWP-USA
Elsie Hainz McGrath pastors Therese of Divine Peace Inclusive Roman Catholic Community in St. Louis, MO, where she presides at weekly liturgies, witnesses weddings and holy unions, leads funeral and memorial services, listens and counsels, and engages in interreligious activities with neighboring worshiping communities. Elsie is also the Program Coordinator for the Great Waters Region, working closely with inquirers, applicants, candidates, and deacons who are discerning a possible call to ordained priesthood within the RCWP movement. Elsie has theology degrees from Saint Louis University and from the Aquinas Institute of Graduate Theology. She has been a professional editor and writer for a Catholic publishing house, a university campus minister, a parish director of RCIA, and (with her late husband) a leader in marriage preparation programming and mentoring. She is the mother of 4, grandmother of 12, and great-grandmother of 11. Email: elsiemc@sbcglobal.net Website: www.thereseofdivinepeace.org
 
Judith McKloskey
Judith McKloskey
Ordained
womandeacon 2006
womanpriest 2007
RCWP-USA
Judith McKloskey first spoke up for women's ordination when her fourth grade teacher said girls couldn't be altar servers. A long time member of the Women's Ordination Conference, she was active in Women's Worship Circle and Never On Sunday, a group studying lectionary references to Biblical women. After earning a B.S. in Biology and an M.S. in Library Science, Judith managed library networks and religious organizations for 20 years. During that time, she served her parish in many roles, including parish council president and lay preacher. Judith ministers as a hospice volunteer and as a presider and sacramental minister for families and small faith communities. She lives in Minnesota with her husband; they have one adult daughter. RCWPJudith@comcast.net
   
 
Marty Meyer-Gad
Marty Meyer-Gad
Ordained
womandeacon 2009
womanpriest 2010
RCWP-USA
Marty Meyer-Gad, MA - liturgy, certificate in Pastoral Liturgical Ministries from Sacred Heart Seminary, Detroit.  She has experience in traditional and democratic parishes.  She worked for the archdiocesan liturgy offices in Detroit and Chicago.  Among her writings are Basics: a Liturgical Education Sourcebook and At Home with the Word, which she started by writing the first volumes.  She helped many faith communities with consensus decision making and goal setting.  In 1983 she danced down the aisle to preside with her husband, Bruno, over their wedding. In 1989 they moved from his native Chicago back to Marty's native MN. They have one adult son. Recent ministry includes serving as a hospital chaplain (certified 2003) and leading worship in prison. Marty sees her ordination as a declaration that the Catholic Church has an abundance of priests but needs to match the gifts of priestly people to the needs of people of God. growthaffirm@izoom.net
 
 
Regina Nicolosi
Regina Nicolosi
Ordained
womandeacon 2005
womanpriest 2006
womanbishop 2009
RCWP-USA
Regina Nicolosi, MA, was born in a small town on the Rhine River. She was a teacher in Germany. 1969 she came to the USA to marry the love of her life, Charles, a radiologist and deacon. Together they raised four children, one of them from Colombia and one from Korea. Regina participated fully in Charles' preparation to the diaconate. She earned her Masters Degree in Pastoral Studies. Regina has worked as a housing manager for seniors, as a chaplain in a correctional facility for boys, in a drug and alcohol recovery unit and in a nursing home. She is retired now. She helps prepare women for ordination and celebrates Eucharist with Dignity and other small faith-communities. crnicolosi@yahoo.com
 
Diane O'Donnell
Diane O'Donnell
Ordained
womandeacon 2011
womanpriest 2012
RCWP-USA
Diane O'Donnell lived her entire life in Minnesota. In 2006 she retired to New Mexico. After receiving her bachelor's degree, she taught school then joined the Flurochemistry laboratories at 3M for 10 years as scientist, followed by becoming the first female purchasing agent at 3M. She then branched out to her own financial planning business receiving many decrees and licenses beyond a "financial planner". During her time prior to retirement, she performed many ministries in the various Catholic parishes of which she was a member. Diane states that "Even though I was successful in my various careers and my church ministries, I still felt I was a round peg in a square hole. Now, in RCWP, I feel completed." She can be reached at cormarie@hotmail.com
 
Jennifer O'Malley
Jennifer O'Malley
Ordained
womandeacon 2011
womanpriest 2012
RCWP-USA
Jennifer O'Malley holds a Masters of Pastoral Studies from Loyola University Chicago and a Masters of Special Education. She is currently a program administrator for the secondary special education programs at Compton Unified School District and has done research on disproportionality and the use of peaceable classroom techniques to stop the school to jail pipeline. Jen previously worked as a Coordinator of Youth ministry at a parish in the archdiocese of Los Angeles and was a program director for a national Catholic service learning program. Jen is involved in ministry with the gay and lesbian community and a member of CTA 20/30. She is committed to social justice and has traveled throughout Central America meeting with local community leaders and union groups. Jen lives in Long Beach with her partner, Liz Carlin, of 20+ years. jomalley72@compton.k12.ca.us
 
 
 
Ann Penick
Ann Penick
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA
Ann Penick is originally from the Chicago area. She and her husband, Jim, live in Maryland near Washington, DC. They have been married for 25+ years. Ann has long been an active member of the Roman Catholic Church. She has done ministry volunteer work as a music minister, minister in sacred dance, retreat facilitator, a member of the liturgy team at various parishes where she’s been a member, and a member of welcoming and hospitality committees. In 1993 Ann received a certification in lay ministry from the Diocese of Birmingham, in Alabama. In 1995 Ann received a Masters in Counseling degree from the University of Birmingham in Alabama. In 1997 she completed 3 units in CPE at Bon Secours/St. Francis Hospital in Charleston, SC. In 2008, Ann received her Masters in Pastoral Ministry degree from Boston College. Ann served as chaplain to college students from1997-2008—with the Diocese of Charleston, South Carolina and with the Archdiocese of Boston. She came face-to-face with her calling to the priesthood in 2005 at the WOW conference in Canada. She has been supported in her journey to the priesthood by Jim, her step-daughter, Katie, her step-son, Mike, and her brother, Rob. Currently, Ann works as a mental health counselor at a Maryland community college. In her spare time Ann enjoys music, dance, travel, her granddaughter Meg, and their cat, Numbers.
 
 
 
Josephine Petermeier
Josephine Petermeier
Ordained
womandeacon 2014
RCWP-USA
Josephine Petermeier grew up on a farm in Northwest Iowa, the oldest of 5 girls. From an early age she felt called to be a priest and longed to say mass. She joined the convent, where she worked in the community's retreat center and retirement home for 9 years. She earned her BA Theology from Creighton University in Omaha and then worked as a DRE for several years. She moved to Minneapolis and studied electronics and then worked as a Service Tech for 15 years. She met and married her husband Jerry, and they have two grown sons. She spent 15 years serving youth as a Scout Leader. She has always been active in her parish as a lector and EM and with RCIA. She volunteers with the homeless and the local food shelf. She is a staff member at St Louis Park Junior High School. She is working toward a Pastoral Ministry Certificate with Global Ministries University. Currently, she is serving at 2 RCWP-led communities, Compassion of Christ Catholic Community and Mary Magdalene, First Apostle, and Friends in Faith, an Intentional Eucharistic Community. For fun, she is a Geo-cacher with over a thousand finds.
 
 
Bertha Popeney
Bertha Popeney
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA
Bertha Popeney felt God calling her to priesthood in early childhood. It is a call that was expressed in a lifetime of service to others. She is a native of San Diego, California, and was born the eldest of six siblings. She has an M.A. in Education, and completed her theological studies in local universities. Both her family and her education instilled in her the importance of love, service and honor, and of protecting and teaching those with whom she came in contact. She taught in the San Diego Unified School District for 25 years. Bertha also engaged in ministry within the Diocese of San Diego and is a recipient of the Humanitarian Award from the USCCB. She is currently Secretary of San Diego Call-To-Action. Bertha lives in San Diego with her beloved husband Tom.
 
 
Kathy Redig
Kathy Redig
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Kathy Redig, M.A. in Pastoral Ministries is a certified chaplain. She has served in Winona, MN in this capacity since 1995. Through this ministry she became aware that many people feel disenfranchised from the Catholic church and other churches. She was called to ministry at a young age, entering the convent after high school. Eventually realizing that she needed a partner in life, she left, married, and with her husband, raised two children. She suddenly became aware that God was calling her to ordination to become part of the change that she hoped to see within the Catholic church. Kathy and her husband Robert have established an inclusive parish, All Are One Roman Catholic church where all are welcome at the table. krredig@hbci.com
 
Chava Redonnet
Chava Redonnet
Ordained
womandeacon 2009
womanpriest 2010
RCWP-USA
Chava Redonnet, has been a member of the Corpus/Spiritus Christi community in Rochester NY since 1980, and serves as chaplain at St. Joseph’s House of Hospitality, the Rochester Catholic Worker, as well as working as a youth minister at First Unitarian Church in Rochester, and as a chaplain resident at Strong Memorial Hospital.
A graduate of Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, she is the author of Standing in the Light, an account of the 1998 upheaval at Corpus Christi and the formation of Spiritus, and of Don’t Forget to Breath Glory and Bound in a River of Light.
Chava has three grown daughters, Clare, Bridget and Emily, two of whom are now living in Rochester, much to her delight.
 
Mary Ellen Robertson
Mary Ellen Robertson
Ordained
womandeacon 2006
womanpriest 2007
RCWP-USA
Mary Ellen Robertson, BA in Theology, RN, ministers through card ministry, spiritual direction & retreat work, publishes a spirituality reflection letter, The Spiritual Connection by subscription and presider for Eucharist with communities in Michigan and Florida.  “Her story” is published in RCWP’s book, Women Find A Way: The Movement & Stories of Roman Catholic Womenpriests. She has served as hospital chaplain and Spiritual Care Counselor for hospice.  Mary Ellen has authored two books, Meditations for Working Women and Meditations for Working Men, owned and managed a motel for 17 years and written various articles including business, personal interviews and spirituality. She is a mother of three adult daughters (including twins), grandmother of six and lives with her husband, John for over 40 years in Michigan. maryelrob@aol.com
 
Victoria Rue
Victoria Rue
Ordained
womandeacon 2004
womanpriest 2005
RCWP-USA
Victoria Rue, M.Div.,  Ph.D.,  is a professor at San Jose State University in Comparative Religious Studies. Her Master of Divinity is from Union Theological Seminary in NYC.  Her Ph.D. is from the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley,CA.   Dr. Rue is Spiritual Care Counselor with Central Coast VNA/Hospice. She is also a theatre writer/director whose work has been seen in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco.  Dr. Rue has published numerous articles, her most recent in New Feminist Christianity: Many Voices Many Views, edited by Mary Hunt & Diann  Neu, 2010.  Victoria's book, Acting Religious: Theatre as Pedagogy in Religious Studies, was published by Pilgrim Press. See her website:  http://www.victoriarue.com.  In January of l988 Victoria was called forth by Dignity NYC to con-celebrate a Mass with an out gay priest on 5th Avenue, across from St. Patrick's Cathedral. That street ordination by LGBT people led her in l995 in Oakland, California, to co-found A Critical Mass: Women Celebrating the Eucharist.  That same NYC ordination by LGBT people led her in 2005 to be one of four women ordained as priests on a boat on the St. Lawrence Seaway. In San Francisco, Victoria was called forth by Trinity Episcopal Church to organize a Roman Catholic community. In January 2009, Dr. Rue began presiding at bi-monthly Saturday Eucharists with Sophia in Trinity: a New Catholic Community. For more information:
 www.sophiaintrinity.org   Also in San Francisco, Dr. Rue presides monthly at a Eucharist for LGBT members of the Metropolitan Community Church.  In the East Bay, Victoria presides monthly at a house church The Namaste Community.  For more information: Gwen animo3@pacbell.net  Victoria and her partner Kathryn Poethig, M.Div., Ph.D. met at Union Theological Seminary, NYC.  Kathryn is a candidate for ordination in the Presbyterian Church, and is Associate Professor Global Studies at California State University at Monterey Bay.  They celebrated their twentieth anniversary of commitment in September 2008 by getting married.  They live in Watsonville, California.
 
Pat Sandall
Pat Sandall
Ordained
womandeacon 2009
womanpriest 2010
RCWP-USA
Pat Sandall's ministry as a Roman Catholic Womanpriest has evolved into what she calls an "itinerant priesthood." Over time Pat has made herself available to groups in the western region who truly want to celebrate Eucharist with a womanpriest but do not have a womanpriest in their area. Upon request, she will travel to celebrate liturgy with these communities. Pat is a member of the national media committee and she hosts the national and international group communications networks. Pat holds a master's degree in Religious Studies from Mount St. Mary's College in Los Angeles. She also holds a doctorate in Theology from Barry University in Miami Shores. She served the Roman Catholic Church in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles for more than twenty years as a catechist, religious education director and pastoral associate. Her areas of interest and activism include social justice issues and feminist studies. She and her husband, Joe, have four adult children and two grandchildren. They divide their time between Carlsbad and Santa Barbara California. She can be ontacted at patsysandall@yahoo.com.
   
 
Irene Senn
Irene Senn
Ordained
womandeacon 2012
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Irene Senn "My journey to ordination began many years ago but, of course, 'women cannot be priests,' so I allowed myself to veer away from the path, most likely because at that point there was no path. However it seems that my whole life has prepared me for ordination, even when there was not an apparent path. Following the prompting of the Spirit I earned an MDiv degree from St. Francis Seminary in Milwaukee in 1992. That same Spirit, which always leads one into the unknown, guided me during the 20-plus years that I served in justice and peace ministry with a congregation of women religious. And, by its raising a recurring question over a period of several years, I finally was able to discern the voice of the Spirit who has been so very patient with me, allowing me to come to this awareness at the right time. The journey continues, still into the unknown, but I continue to trust the leadership of the Spirit." Irene and Bob are parents of four adult children and grandparents of eight wonderfully energetic young people.
 
Donna Shaw
Donna Marie Shaw
Ordained
womandeacon 2014
RCWP-USA

Donna Marie Shaw Born a cradle Catholic into a Polish Catholic family in Chicago, Illinois, Donna has felt a call to priesthood from the time she was a child.  She has been active in supporting women’s rights, feminism, renewal in the Church, civil rights, and LGBT rights.   She raised two sons and a daughter, and is now the proud grandmother of a little girl.  She served as a nurse for over 25 years, incorporating holistic methods of health care into her service. She has a Bachelor of Religious Studies from Global Ministries University.  The groundwork is being laid for the beginning of a community in Simi Valley, CA.  She is active in promoting the environment and the personhood and dignity of all creation, learning ASL and the Celtic harp, and enjoying her hobbies of sci-fi, reading, and of course—Renaissance Faires.

 
Martha Sherman
Martha Sherman
Ordained
womandeacon 2012
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Martha Sherman grew up in St. Charles, MO, across the street from her parish and school. The School Sisters of Notre Dame strongly influenced her during elementary and high school. After graduating from St. Louis University with BA in English and Theology, she entered the SSNDs. Though she left after just four years, she continued to teach in an SSND run school for eight more years. For the past 17 years she and her partner, Marie, have owned and operated Camp America Campground in Salem, SD. They consider this a ministry of hospitality. She is currently pursuing her MTh through Global Ministries University and doing CPE with the hope of becoming a certified chaplain.
 
 
 
Mary Frances Smith
Mary Frances Smith
Ordained
womandeacon 2008
womanpriest 2009
RCWP-USA
Mary Frances Smith I am a registered nurse who has worked in psychiatry for thirty-five years, in staff and in leadership positions. My husband of thirty-two years is my strongest advocate in all my endeavors. I have three adult sons, an adult stepdaughter, and one grandchild. I earned my Master of Arts Degree in Theology from The College of St. Catherine, St. Paul, Minnesota. It has been as a Roman Catholic laywoman that I have always experienced the Church, the powerful social institution that framed my spiritual life from my birth. My belief in the progress of women in the Roman Catholic Church is very deep and strong. It is my joy to stand with women and men who bring life and growth to the Church. marysmith98@msn.com.
 
Donnieau Snyder
Donnieau Snyder
Ordained
womandeacon 2014
RCWP-USA
Donnieau Snyder, PhD is a member of New Spirit Rising, an inclusive Catholic faith community located in Fresno, CA. She loves and is deeply devoted to the various facets of her ministry which includes serving her faith community, religious education, working with homeless veterans dually diagnosed with mental health needs and substance abuse issues, as well as working with homeless teens and young adults. Her ministry work stretches across California's central valley and the San Francisco bay area. She has a deep passion for social justice which includes advocating for women's leadership across all faiths, community outreach to assist with appropriate access to mental health services and providing education about mental health. Dr. Snyder was ordained a deacon on September 06, 2014. Email: Donnieau@gmail.com
   
 
Rod Stephens
Rod Stephens
Ordained priest 1974
Received into RCWP 2008
RCWP-USA
Rod Stephens was ordained a Roman Catholic priest on May 25, 1974 for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and later was a priest of the Diocese of Orange when it split from LA in 1976.  He was welcomed as a member of RCWP in 2008. Rod is Co-Founder and Co-Pastor with Jane Via of Mary Magdalene Catholic Community in San Diego, CA. Along with Jane, Rod is also member of the Immaculate Heart Community of Los Angeles and the Founder and Director of SACRA FORMA, a design studio since 1974 for architecture, graphics, and liturgical consultation. Rod is also one of the founding members of The Catholic Worker in Orange County which feeds and houses 125 homeless people a night and the Development Chair of Housing Works, a non-profit established to create housing options that promote, with respect and dignity, sustainable, environmentally sensitive, affordable communities that provide equal and fair access to housing and human services for people with limited income. Rod lives in Irvine with his partner of twenty five years, Howard Seller, Professor Emeritus at Cal State University, Fullerton.
 
Bernadyne Sykora
Bernadyne Sykora
Ordained
womandeacon 2012
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Bernadyne Sykora has longed to be at the altar to celebrate the liturgy of the Eucharist throughout her life. In her early adult life she spent five years in the Maryknoll community. After leaving there, she taught in various school districts in the state of Minnesota for 25 years, and earned a master's degree in education of children with special needs. She is currently taking classes from Global Ministries University in theology. She is on the leadership team of the Community of Mary Magdalene, First Apostle in St Cloud MN, which is pastored by RCWP member Mary Smith. Working on the leadership team has afforded her with a view of the feminine Godde who gives her much comfort and joy. Bernadyne was married to Don for 49 years before his death, and together they raised four children; she has seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. bernie@sykora.me
 
Suzanne Thiel
Suzanne Thiel
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Suzanne Thiel is a woman of actions not words and has worn many hats including associate of a religious womens’ congregation, eucharistic minister, author of the Inventory of Habilitation Programs for Mentally Handicapped Adults, high school and college educator, and board member of several non-profits organizations serving: the mentally ill, dyslexic children, catholic schools, developmentally disabled adults, to name a few, and is currently also a neighborhood emergency (disaster response) team member. Suzanne, a native Oregonian, is married to Bruce for the past 40 years. They have three young adult sons and three granddaughters. Suzanne has a MA in Education and additional graduate hours in counseling and psychology. She is Jesuit-trained in theology and philosophy from the University of Santa Clara.  Her priestly ministries include: hospital chaplaincy, volunteer ministry at several assisted living facilities and a women’s prison, home visits to the sick and elderly and the shared administrative ministry of RCWP. suzthiel@yahoo.com
 
Michael Tompkins
Michael Tompkins
Ordained
deacon 2010
priest 2011
RCWP-USA
Michael Tompkins Like many of my women peers, I have felt called to the priesthood since early childhood. Unlike them, I was accepted into Roman Catholic seminaries—three of them before I was twenty-six years of age. I failed to thrive in all three, the fault always being mine. I was haunted by “many are called, but few are chosen.” At fifty-six years of age, RCWP gave me the opportunity to explore and discern this calling. I have been wholeheartedly encouraged by my religious community, The Immaculate Heart of Mary. I have studied for three years and worked under the mentorship of woman priest, Suzanne Dunne. I had the luxury and privilege to serve as deacon in Mary Magdalene Apostle Catholic Community, pastored by Jane Via, Rod Stephens, Nancy Corran, and an active community of Christians committed to a church that strives to include everybody. I believe I am taking my place among the church we are all called to be. Please, pray for me.
 
 
Toni Tortorilla
Toni Tortorilla
Ordained
womanpriest 2007
womandeacon 2007
RCWP-USA
Toni Tortorilla is a psychotherapist and spiritual director in Portland, Oregon with an MDiv from a Jesuit theological school. She has been in the counseling field for 30 years, landing there originally in an attempt to pursue the calling to ordination that had seemed to pursue her relentlessly since she was 5 years old. She completed a B.A. in Theology just after the conclusion of Vatican II, and worked as a DRE during the early transition years.  She taught high school religion, got fed up with the hierarchy and its position on women, followed other wise and transformative spiritual paths for 20 years, then came around full circle to the heart of the RC tradition once again.  After returning, Toni soon found herself in a parish working with a team of people interested in reaching out to disenfranchised and alienated Catholics.  When anti-gay initiatives came before the voters of Oregon she approached a sympathetic priest with the idea for an outreach ministry to the gay and lesbian community.  He was enthusiastically receptive, and this pastoral experience became the launching pad for her application and acceptance into seminary.  tjtortor@aol.com
 
Joanna Truelson
Joanna Truelson
Ordained
womandeacon 2014
RCWP-USA
Joanna Truelson is a founding member of the Namaste Catholic Community in Orinda, CA.  She is a spiritual director and enjoys participating in international missions and pilgrimages.  Joanna says that, "Creation Spirituality weaves the threads of my life...my childhood path of positive joy, and blend together into my creative path toward RCWP. This life journey culminates through the transformation of service and giving back..."
 
Helen Umphrey
Helen Moorman Umphrey
Ordained
womandeacon 2012
womanpriest 2013
RCWP-USA
Helen Moorman Umphrey is a farmer's daughter from Ohio. In her early teens she entered the Sisters of the Precious Blood in Dayton, Ohio, and was a member for 26 years. She has served as a teacher, principal, parish music minister, and in administration for the community. She is now married to Frank Umphrey for 32 years, and lives in Battle Ground, WA where she has served in the parish as a Director of Religious Education and Pastoral Associate for 25 years. She is now retired, but continues many Cathoic/Christian group processes from her home. She has a BA from the University of Dayton, and an MA in Pastoral Ministry from St. Mary's University in Winona, WI.
 
Kathy Sullivan Vandenburg
Kathy Sullivan
Vandenburg

Ordained
womandeacon 2005
womanpriest 2006
RCWP-USA
Kathy Sullivan Vandenberg, MS, M.Div., is a feminist theologian, clinical therapist, and trauma specialist.   She serves as an associate pastor at Good Shepherd Parrish, Nenno, WI.  Ms. Vandenberg's current ministries include counseling, adjunct graduate educator, and hospital chaplain.  For the past 30 years she was active in several ministries in her parish and archdiocesan committees.  She has two grown daughters and one grandson. Kathy has been active in the women's ordination movement for over thirty years. pastorksv@aol.com
 
Monique Venne
Monique Gamache Venne
Ordained
womandeacon 2010
womanpriest 2011
RCWP-USA
Monique Gamache Venne first experienced a call to priesthood in fourth grade, when she wanted to be an altar server even though it wasn't allowed at the time. Not interested in becoming a nun, she pursued studies in the natural sciences, receiving a B.S. in Physics and an M.S. in Meteorology and working as a professional meteorologist. She was also active in her parish as a volunteer in various liturgical ministries and served as co-director of a women's Bible study. After being laid off from her last meteorological job, she decided to pursue her avocation and received an M.Div. from United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities in 2004. She helped found Compassion of Christ Catholic Community in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, and is serving as co-pastor with RCWP member Linda Wilcox. Monique sees herself as a person marginalized by the Catholic Church who ministers to others pushed to the margins by the Church. Interested in crafts all her life, she has won ribbons at the Minnesota State Fair for hand embroidery, garment sewing, and beadwork. She has been married since 1981 to her husband David and owns (or is owned by!) their cat Boris. She may be contacted at mgvrcwp@gmail.com.
 
 
Jane Via
Jane Via
Ordained
womandeacon 2004
womanpriest 2006
RCWP-USA
Jane Via was born in St. Louis, Mo. in 1947.  She has a B.A. in Spanish Language and Literature from Purdue University, a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Marquette University, and a J.D. from the University of San Diego.  She is a county prosecutor in San Diego, California and a former professor of Religious Studies.  Jane was ordained a deacon in 2004 on the Danube River and a priest in June of 2006 on the Bodensee off Swiss shores.  Jane and friend, Rod Stephens, founded the first RCWP “parish” in November 2005.  Mary Magdalene Apostle Catholic Community meets weekly in San Diego, Ca. with an average attendance of 75. Jane is also the convener of a small church community, whenever possible a participant in Call To Action, and is active in an ecumenical Christian Community.  She shares her life with her husband of many years and their 2 college aged sons. You can contact Jane through the “Contact US” link at the MMACC website:  www.mmacc.org
 
Gabriella Velardi
Gabriella Velardi-Ward
Ordained
womandeacon 2007
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Gabriella Velardi Ward, BFA, AAS, B.Arch, M.Theo candidate – Gabriella has wanted to be a Roman Catholic Priest since the age of five. The institutional church’s rejection, based on gender, has led her to work in a number of non-traditional fields for women. She is currently working as an architect. She has over twelve years of parish ministry including adult religious education, spiritual direction, organizing and leading retreats and teaching meditation and contemplative prayer. Her call also led her to explore entry into vowed religious life, studying and spending a number of years with the Cenacle sisters. She has also explored other faith traditions including the Episcopal Church, Buddhism and Native American spirituality. Her love of learning has led her to studying theology for five years in the seminary and the continuing study, formal and informally, of theology, spirituality and psychology. She has been a justice advocate for women’s rights, animal rights, children’s rights and student’s rights. As a Roman Catholic WomenPriest, she currently has a sacramental ministry as well as a Spiritual Direction ministry specializing in survivors of child abuse. She is the mother of two and the grandmother of five.
 
 
Diane Smith Whalen
Diane Smith Whalen
Ordained
womandeacon 2009
womenapriest 2010
RCWP-USA
Diane Smith Whalen, who lives in Olympia, WA, has experienced a call to priesthood since she was very young.  She pursued a BA in Religious Studies and served as a Jesuit Volunteer.  She then received her MSW and did social work for a few years before becoming a mother to two beautiful daughters.  In 1984, Diane began companioning individuals and groups in spiritual direction and retreat work.  She helped develop and staff a program for the formation and ongoing supervision of spiritual directors as well as initiating a group spiritual direction program.  Besides receiving an MA in ministry and a D.Min in spiritual direction, she was active in her local parish, serving as a lector, cantor, teacher/facilitator and retreat leader.
Diane’s desire is to minister with those who find themselves alienated from the RC Church.  Her life is centered in and nourished by the Eucharist.  She hopes to help others claim their baptismal priesthood and nourish each other through community worship and service.  Diane loves people.  She also enjoys singing, traveling and spending time with her wonderful spouse and great friends.  You may contact her at dswhalen@comcast.net.
 
Linda Wilcox
Linda Wilcox
Ordained
womandeacon 2008
womanpriest 2009
RCWP-USA
Linda Wilcox I received my M.A. in Theology and Pastoral Ministry at the College of St. Catherine in 2005. I have been active in a variety of ministries through the years in my parish, including the Just Faith program. My husband and I belong to a small faith community. Most recently I have been involved in hospice, ministry to the homeless, and hospital chaplain ministry. I have been a Benedictine Oblate with St. Paul's Monastery in Maplewood, MN. for eight years. I became interested in women's ordination through exposure to the movement at the Call to Action gathering that I attend each year. I have a passion for cooking. As I discerned my call to the priesthood I felt a strong connection between planning and preparing a meal and the Benedictine value of hospitality. I now co-pastor Compassion of Christ Catholic Community in Minneapolis, MN where I gather at the table with community and celebrate the breaking of bread at an inclusive table where "all are welcome". Linda and her husband Russ are parents of four grown children.
 
Cynthia Yoshitomi
Cynthia Yoshitomi
Ordained
womandeacon 2011
RCWP-USA
Cynthia Yoshitomi

Cynthia was born and raised in Los Angeles California. She grew up in an interfaith home, in a Jewish neighborhood and married into a Buddhist and Methodist family. She has served as a VISTA Volunteer, Human Relations Consultant and trainer in the Green Circle Program. Twenty years were spent as a Roman Catholic Campus Minister at Occidental College, Alverno Catholic High School for Girls, and the University Catholic Center at UCLA. She brings to RCWP her love of the Catholic faith; her love of the Eucharist and her experience as an Interfaith and interracial leader community member within the Los Angeles area. She is currently working on her Doctorate in Ministry from Global Ministries, having received her Bachelor of Arts and Masters in Education from Arizona State University. She is an imaginative Religious Educator, Preacher and Spiritual Director in Ventura, California. She received the Lavender Award from UCLA for her spiritual and secular support of the Gay Lesbian and Trans gendered Community in 2004. She also served as a Board member of the National Catholic Reporter. She was Ordained as a Deacon in 2011 and meets with her Intentional Community as a Sister community of the Church of the Beatitudes once a week. She has been married to Jerry Yoshitomi for over 45 years and have two grown sons, David and Joseph and a beautiful daughter in law, Missy, who has given the family our first grandchild, Adelaide the Great.

 
Barbara Zeman
Barbara Zeman
Ordained
womandeacon 2008
womanpriest 2008
RCWP-USA
Barbara Zeman, M.A. – Theology – B.A. Communications, has been a writer/producer for over 20 years with emphasis on films and videos for personal enrichment, health-care education and spiritual enlightenment. During her many years in parish and university ministry in Chicago Barbara has worked shoulder to shoulder with people of all faiths to bring about a more inclusive and just world. Currently working on certification as a hospital chaplain she has completed two units of CPE in a large city hospital. Born and raised in a devout Roman Catholic family, Barbara knows the importance of prayer. For her prayer and the sacraments connect us with the unknown face of God and give us hope in today’s secular world. elke@rcn.com

In Memoriam

Janine Marie Denomme


Janine Marie Denomme


Janine Denomme passed into new life on May 17, 2010. Janine, 45, cherished partner of Hon. Nancy Katz; beloved daughter of Robert and Mary Joan Denomme of Detroit, MI; granddaughter of Earl Van Wassenhove; dear sister of Joseph (Patricia), David (Linda), and Mark; treasured as a daughter and sister by Dorothy Katz, Judy and John Pasternak; devoted aunt of Stephanie (Nicholas), Joe, Christina, and Lauren Denomme, and Brian Pasternak.

Ordained to the transitional diaconate on July 14, 2009 and to the priesthood on April 10, 2010 through Roman Catholic Womenpriests; friend, teacher, spiritual companion, priest, guide to many and inspiration to everyone who knew her.


Iris Muller


Iris Müller


Iris Müller was born in 1930 in Magdeburg (mid-eastern part of Germany). After her final high school examination in 1950 she studied Protestant theology in Naumburg/Halle. In 1955 she continued her theological studies at the Martin Luther-University in Halle/Saale and received a diploma in theology from this university in 1958. After this examination which qualified her to serve as a pastor in the Protestant church,  she converted to the Roman Catholic Church – a church, which she  found, expressed its "following of Christ not just in words but in full sacramental reality." The consequences of this religious decision were extremely hard for Iris and  as a woman she now came under the restrictions of Catholic Canon law.

Iris says, "I had become a creature incapable of receiving Holy Orders (cf. c. 1024 CIC).  As a Catholic woman I was expected to accept the status of women in the Catholic Church. A further consequence of my conversion to this Church was that there was no prospect of any employment for me as a Catholic theologian in the communist regime of the DDR (East German Republic), since I refused to become a member of  the communist party SED. My situation became so critical that I had to leave the DDR illegally and found refuge in the Western part of Germany (BRD)in 1959.

After many problems I succeeded in continuing my theological studies at the faculty of Catholic theology in Münster. As in the DDR my Catholic surroundings, the professors and most of the students, expected of me that I should accept the position of women in the Catholic Church without further question. But I decided to be faithful to my conviction and to my call to priesthood. So (as a former Protestant theologian) I was the first woman in the Catholic faculty  to give witness that women are discriminated against in the Catholic Church and that their inferior status had to be reformed. On my path as a pioneer for women’s equality and women’s ordination at the Catholic faculty in Münster, I found solidarity and support from Ida Raming. In 1963, during Vatican Council II, we together wrote a petition to the Council, calling for women’s ordination. In 1970 I completed my doctorate in theology.

During the following years I remained a member of the faculty in Münster, as a scientific assistant. I was involved in building up a special library on the status of women in the three monotheistic religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam), entitled “Women in Religion”.

After a lifelong struggle for women’s equality and women’s ordination in the Catholic church I decided to follow my call to priesthood. Together with my friend and colleague, Ida Raming, I was ordained a priest  in 2002 as one of the original seven women on the Danube River."

 

Mary Ann Schoettly


Mary Ann McCarthy Schoettly

 

Mary Ann McCarthy Schoettly held Masters Degrees in Theology, Administration and Supervision, and Science. She also held certificates in Pastoral Care and Spiritual Direction.  Mary Ann was a life-long teacher – in high school classrooms, colleges, religious education programs (CCD, Confirmation, RCIA, Renew 2000), Stephen Ministry and retreat work. Mary Ann pastored Sophia Inclusive Catholic Community, in Sussex County, NJ, volunteered as a Spiritual Caregiver with the Chaplain’s Office at Newton Memorial Hospital, led a Spirituality Group for Bridgeway Rehabilitation Services, and facilitated a small faith-sharing community. Mary Ann lived in Northwest New Jersey. She was married for twenty eight years, and had three adult children and two delightful granddaughters. She was active in RCWP, CTA, VOTF, and the Sparta Ecumenical Council.


Mary Styne


Mary Styne

 

Mary Styne sometimes called herself “the real-estate lady” or “the candle-lady” but no title was  more meaningful to her than that of priest – except mom, of course. Always the voice of social justice, this single mom raised four children, served the church that she so dearly loved and still found time to get a Masters of Divinity. Mary’s sense of justice and equality colored her every step. She courageously spent her life answering God’s call in many humble yet profound ways. By the time she entered into formation for the priesthood she had already answered some very difficult calls from God including the heartbreaking loss of her son, Scott DiSalvo, and a bout with lung cancer.

In her own words she prayed on the occasion of her first Mass, “Creator God, bless me with discomfort at easy answers and superficial relationships, so that I will live deep within my heart. Redeemer God, bless me with anger at injustice, oppression and exploitation of people, so that I will work for justice, equality and peace. Abiding Spirit, bless me with the courage to believe that I can actually make a difference.” With outspoken candor, Mary challenged her sister priests to live a life of integrity, honesty and compassion, always remembering to forgive those who ‘knew not what they did’. Mary was ordained to the transitional deaconate on November 1, 2008 and to the priesthood on August 16, 2009. On May 12, 2010 at age 70 she went home to be with her Creator and is “prayin for us”.