Woman blazes path to train Catholic priests

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Source: Chicago Tribune

By Manya Brachear Pashman

Contact Reporter

On the bucolic Mundelein campus that houses a theological university and the largest Roman Catholic seminary in the U.S., there are 220 men studying to be priests — plus one woman about to join a small cadre of female faithful blazing new paths.

On Saturday, Dawn Eden Goldstein is expected to graduate from the campus’ University of St. Mary of the Lake with a doctorate in sacred theology, which will allow her to help train aspiring priests. The feat marks the first time a woman at the north suburban school will earn such a degree.

Priests and administrators at the university emphasize that Goldstein, 47, is not earning her degree from Mundelein Seminary, but from St. Mary’s, a co-ed theological school where most students are men. Still, Goldstein’s accomplishment signals a new direction in American Catholicism.

“I’ve found a kind of equilibrium here,” she said, referring to the cautious pride professors have expressed about her pursuit. “I’ll be glad to move forward, but I’m thankful for the experience of being here.”

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