Kathy Bean is a candidate for ordination as deacon, and future priest with the Roman Catholic Women Priests, U.S.A. Prior to this, Kathy worked as a nurse in various cities serving Indian and Native American communities relating to dental health.
Kathy was born November 26th, 1947 in Indiana, Pennsylvania.
Christ and God have always been in her life, and as she worked she fell more in love with scripture. She was unable to attend seminary because of the requirements to complete a Bachelors degree, until a Methodist seminary admitted her to their program where she continued her education in theological studies. Her Master’s degree surveyed women in the Roman Catholic Church who disagreed with papal law and interpretations as they impacted people around gender and sexuality. She completed her Masters from United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio in 1998.
As a Roman Catholic she saw that her options for ordination were severely limited by the institution. Kathy experienced multiple events in her life where within the church she was fighting against a brick wall, and was deeply hurt by the gender oppression in the Roman Catholic Church.
She attended the Call to Action Conference: Justice Rising in 2013 in Louisville where she had the experience of attending the women’s liturgy and wept through the entire service. At the conference a group of Roman Catholic Women Priests had an outreach table where she was introduced to the group.
Two years ago she was diagnosed with TIA’s small strokes and in facing death asked herself, “What if I die having said no to God’s calling of me?” to priesthood. She decided pursue her call, one step at a time.
In the process of pursuing ordination with the Roman Catholic Women Priests in 2012 she struggled with how this would impact her marriage and members of her family and community who belong to the Roman Catholic Church. She knows that she and other members will be excommunicated, but believes that that part of the work of Roman Catholic Women Priests is being a model for transformative work to dismantle gender oppression in the church and to be a prophetic voice for a diversity of religious leadership.
She is participating in the Roman Catholic Women Priests to support the groups commitment to dismantle, “the injustices of class, race, sexual orientation, gender, an mental and physical challenges…we affirm the social justice tradition of the church and seek justice for all…” (RCWP Principles Part II.).
She visions part of her work as a Deacon and Priest holding small house church meetings and integrating her skills as a quilter and visual artist (pictures included with this bio depict church banners created by Kathy).
Kathy looks forward to celebrating and moving forward in life as an ordained Deacon in this spring 2014, and believes that God loves and delights in the diversity of God’s image reflected in human beings.
You can find more information about the RCWP and the Call to Action conference through the following links: http://romancatholicwomenpriests.org/, http://cta-usa.org/
(This biographical statement written by Sonny Duncan from information provided by Kathy Bean.)