Father Roy Bourgeois, Priest of the Catholic Church and activist for the closing of the School of the Americas spoke about something completely different then what his lifelong work usually entitled Saturday evening at the Civil Center in Columbus, Georgia. Roy Bourgeois speech strictly advocated the ordination of women in society.
"Growing up in this small town in Louisiana, We did not question our church's teachings, we did not critique our country's foreign policy," said Bourgeois reminiscing on the early years of his life.
Bourgeois had stated to the audience that he served in Vietnam via shore duty after a previous four years in the military.
"The prophet Isaiah says it very well; he says they will take evil and call it good, they will take a lie and call it true and I and so many of us bought into that lie in Vietnam," Bourgeois said.
Vietnam had changed Roy Bourgeois' ideals greatly. Bourgeois states that while he was on active duty he came to the conclusion that "god does not bless war."
"It was the suffering that I saw many among the civilians, the children, their parents who were killed and so many others; losing friends there and wounded there that really forced me into the arms of god, Bourgeois said."
Bourgeois clarified to the audience that he felt God was calling him to be a peacemaker, a priest and a healer.
Over the course of Father Roy Bourgeois' life as an activist against the School of the Americas, he said he had met many devout Christian women who also felt that god was calling them to priesthood.
"Being a typical priest; when I heard their call to priesthood, how they would be called like us men. I was a little threatened and said 'well this is not our tradition," Bourgeois said.
Bourgeois explains that he began to start asking himself and his colleagues questions.
"Why can't women be ordained as priests? Who are we as men to say women that our call from god is valid; but yours is not."
Roy Bourgeois believes that refusing the ordination of women is a strong injustice against women and god who is calling them and the church.
Bourgeois began to scrutinize the word tradition by relating it to the way it was used in the past.
"In our little town we used the word 'tradition' to justify the black members of our church, seated in the last five rows of pews," Bourgeois said.
Bourgeois states the first encounter with a female priest was with Janice Sevre-Duszynska. Bourgeois had ordained Janice himself in August 2008 in a church in Lexington, Kentucky.
Father Bourgeois states that he had not only known Janice for a long time but she also served six months in prison as a prisoner of conscience in the efforts for the School of the Americas Watch.
A month later Bourgeois was fully excommunicated from the Catholic Church.
Bourgeois also states that in the United States alone, over 5000 priests have sexually abused over 12000 children. Where he was excommunicated for ordaining a woman into a catholic priest; priests who committed sexual rape on children were not excommunicated for their crimes.
While concluding his speech Bourgeois states that he felt he had done the right thing and a great burden had been taken off his shoulders that was accumulating for a long time.