I think that if women are single, they are not seen as potentially a priest. They may be forgotten sooner if they remain single, whereas the young man may be seen as discerning a vocation.... This is just an impression and not exactly an opinion.
I did not bring it up because I think women should be priests or anything but I think that women are given less validation as singles in society at large. As for the Church- I would have to consider and reconsider what I said. It could be changing right now since Pope Francis recently announced he is going to hire women in the Vatican according to one report on the forums. It could be that some shifts in society will change things....again.
While women can't be priest, they can become religious sisters.
Have you actually witnessed these behaviors on a widespread basis, or is this purely speculation or based on what you've observed with a very small number of singles who may have either explicitly expressed interest in a vocation or shown some evidence of having one?
Also keep in ming that any individual attention paid to those who may have a religious vocation is most likely motivated by the individual showing interest, not a global policy of "the Church".
I won't even try to substantiate anything I wrote because it was mostly stated based simply on impressions and not much else, although I have moved a lot and gone to many parishes in Southern California during certain years in California. But many years have passed since that time and our church may have been changing the whole time since then.
Still there is not enough there for me to conclude anything. My sense is only based on an over all impression, nothing I could quantify or prove. Furthermore it was stated more to offer fodder for discussion than as any real informative contribution. So I am not surprised anyone would question it...
I think older singles and divorced have felt ignored for years and people don't question that. I know many never married women who feel equally ignored as the divorced and widowed group and who have given up trying to have any great presence in a parish. I think married people represent more stability to the average mindset. I think in general people tend to place more value on what they think adds stability to a parish or parish life. I can'r expect people to simply agree with this but i can say I have been a single woman living alone in a big parish and among a group of parishes and I felt passed over if you will. I think I will let this drop, I think a lot of never married women may feel this way but not want to state it.