The Pope’s envoy to Ireland has a stinging message to Catholic reformers who want to modernize church law: there is no possibility women will ever be ordained as priests.
"The Catholic faith exists in part because of the tradition of the faith and that tradition on that point is totally clear, completely clear," Papal Nuncio Archbishop Charles Brown told the Irish Independent.
"The Holy Father has spoken on that and I don't think as a result we're going to have women priests."
Brown said Pope Benedict XVI had spoken definitively on the issue of women priests in 1994 and the church is "simply unable to do that."
His edict is in direct opposition to the majority of Irish Catholics — 77 percent whom said in a survey commissioned by the Association of Catholic Priests that they believed women should be ordained.
But Brown told the Independent the edict on women in the clergy is not a question of choice.
Instead, he said, it is about being "obedient and faithful to the continual tradition of the Catholic faith.’’
One major Irish voice for the inclusion of women in the Catholic priesthood has been former president Mary McAleese.
Last month, McAleese revealed how Cardinal Bernard Law, the former Catholic Archbishop of Boston, slammed her over her views, telling her during her 1998 visit to the United States that he was “sorry for Catholic Ireland to have you as president.’’
Law resigned in 2002 after it was alleged he which had covered up sexual abuse committed by clergy in his archdiocese.
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