Nothing wrong with Consecrated Virgins ... but.
I once had a spiritual director who thought the revision in canon law (Canon 603) permitting the eremetical life once again was a mistake. If I remember correctly he said it would give canonical status to a host of misfits who didn't belong in religious life. At least that's how I interpret what he said these 20+ years later. Look at all the hermits and you'll see what I mean. What?
So anyway - Consecrated Virgins keep popping up in the news - now that the rite was restored.
Nothing wrong with that either.
Unless you make a big deal about it - then it's weird.
Rachel Rose Dumont, 28, is a consecrated virgin in the Catholic Church, having professed solemn vows in a ceremony on Sullivan’s Island, S.C., on October 15, 2014, the memorial of Saint Teresa of Avila. As a “bride of Christ,” the ancient title bestowed on women who forsake conventional marriage to enter into a chaste union with the man they love and believe to be God incarnate, Dumont arranged for a wedding replete with “insignia of bridal consecration,” in the words of the little-known Rite of Consecration to a Life of Virginity. Her plans included bridesmaids, groomsmen, and a stately procession down the aisle of her parish church, Corpus Christi. - National ReviewSay what you want, that's just weird. Weirdness all the way. St. Therese did a wedding invitation for her profession - but it was spiritual - not religious. Yes it was. Carmelites have ceremonies for clothing and religious profession which can look like nuptials - that is religious within a religious context - it's not a wedding parody, nor is there a wedding 'party'. In my opinion, the eremetic and the consecrated life is summed up in this: "Hidden in Christ with God." Indeed, it seems to me, the consecrated virgin/bride should be more hidden than flashing around a wedding ring ... as the Song of Songs reveals:
Descend from the peak of Amana,
from the peak of Senir and Hermon,
From the lairs of lions,
from the leopards’ heights...
A garden enclosed, my sister, my bride,a garden enclosed, a fountain sealed!
Instead, this woman's story sounds like a Princess Bride fantasy.
Ms. Dumont Bride'O'Christ is suing for civil recognition of her marriage since the SCOTUS gay marriage decision; asking that the principle of marriage equality be extended to women in her state of life." I don't know - that quest for attention and recognition should be cause for an annulment right there. Given her claim for legal recognition, perhaps since Christ has so many brides already, maybe someone should file a suit disallowing religious profession because it's ritualized polygamy. Oh! Oh! Maybe her big idea could be considered precedent to legalize polygamy. I'm being facetious, but Ms. Bride'O'Christ started it.
“The law of the land is that pretty much any two consenting adults can be civilly married,” she argues. “Civil marriage confers a certain ‘nobility and dignity’” — the reference is to Obergefell — “that, yes, I could live without, but I don’t have to. I have a legal right to it.” She breaks eye contact for a moment and looks at the window, on the other side of which a mother plays with her splashing children at the edge of the pool. “We’re a traditional male–female couple who have committed ourselves to each other in a lifelong union. What part of that makes the State of South Carolina conclude we’re not married?” - Ms. Bride'O'ChristShe's so serious. That's not what it's about though. This lady is a new convert - she came into the Church in 2012, became a Consecrated Virgin in 2014. That's not much of a 'novitiate' if you know what I mean. Now embroiled in controversy, that doesn't strike me as worthy of a vocation as a consecrated virgin. It's rather imprudent, to say the least. (She also talks about visions she experienced...)
That said, a theologian friend of Dumont's commented on the story saying in part:
[...] her demand that South Carolina bless it is a grave misstep. The secular state has seduced her, don’t you think? Only the Church can give her what she seeks. She longs profoundly for the sacrament of matrimony. Should the Church extend it to women in her state? I don’t know. I know only that she would like it to, though probably she doesn’t realize that yet. She has yet to learn that the civil law is sterile in this regard. It has nothing to offer that she needs. Rachel Rose, you are knocking on the wrong door. - Roberto LambertiniProfessor Lambertini is nicer than I would be.
Who is this woman's spiritual director?
I didn't say that! You said that! Did I say that? I didn't say that!
I think that's so funny that you think I said that! I didn't say that!
Why do you think I wouldn't know that! I know that!