Jeanne Deroin, “To the members of the commission of the banquet of socialist priests” (1849)

To the members of the commission
of the banquet of socialist priests.
I come to your banquet because women are also priests, and they must have a place in the temple, as in the State and in the family.
I come to ask to speak to you, because women are also apostles. Jesus Christ himself called them to apostleship, saying of Mary, who listened to his teaching, to Martha, who criticized her: Mary has chosen the better part. And if Christ, who did not want the light to be hidden under a bushel, allowed women to listen to his teaching, it is because he wanted her to have the right and power to spread them
I beseech you therefore, if you are the apostles of the faith of the future, not to ignore the will of your Divine Master.
Open the doors of the temple to women, who must enter as your equal, if you want to break the last link of the ancient slavery and destroy forever the sinful prejudices and unjust privileges which hinder the progress of humanity hold back the realization of the reign of God on the earth, of the reign of fraternity and universal harmony.
I propose a toast to the final redemption of humanity.
Fraternal greetings,
Jeanne Deroin.
Source: L’Opinion des Femmes May 1849, p. 5.
Working translation by Shawn P. Wilbur