Bill Rancic Defends His Wife Giuliana After Fashion Police Controversy: 'I Tried to Get Them to Release the Footage' 42 years, 2,191 covers and 55,436 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- The Voice Star Jordan Smith Weds His Longtime Love Kristen Denny
- Read the Cover Story: Matthew McConaughey: Love, Family & What I've Learned
- Meghan King Edmonds Opens Up About Pregnancy Hormones: 'I Was Happy But I Was Sad'
- WATCH: Matthew McConaughey Reveals Which of His Female Costars He Really Had a Crush On Growing Up
- WATCH: Jamie Lynn Spears Reveals Sister Britney's Advice for Dealing With Public Scrutiny: "Trust Yourself"
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- December 30, 1974
- Vol. 2
- No. 27
A Woman in Priestly Robes Defies Her Church to Serve Her God
With these words, the Rev. Carter Heyward described both her '74 triumph and her faith in the power that made it possible.
Carter Heyward, 29, was one of 11 women ordained as Episcopal priests last summer in a controversial ceremony in Philadelphia—ordinations that were soon declared invalid by the church's ruling body. Undaunted, she has become both a symbol and a spokeswoman for the right of women to share priestly duties with men—a condition that many people would accept quite readily, since the priestly qualities of empathy, understanding and mercy are as much feminine as masculine. But tradition and canonical law stand stoutly in the way.
The passion of the feeling against her was expressed when she participated in the consecration of the Eucharist at New York's Riverside Church. A young male priest, stepping forward to take communion, reached for the chalice of wine which she held, dug his fingernails into her hand till it bled and whispered, "I hope you burn in hell." Carter Heyward, who was reared in a moderately religious North Carolina family, has taken it all in stride. "I am having to realize," she said, "that part of life is experiencing pain right smack in the middle of joy."
Like the other members of the Philadelphia Eleven, Carter Heyward faces an ecclesiastical trial which could result in suspension. For the moment, she will continue serving as a priest and in her job at Union Theological Seminary, where she teaches "Feminism and Vocation." She, like many others, has faith that history is on her side and that women will be officially accepted in the church "as people, as human beings," and as priests.
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!