Loading
Ordination of women priests not valid, says canon law expert

.- The ordinations of nine women yesterday on a boat in the St. Lawrence River are not valid and cannot be recognized by the Catholic Church, said canon law expert Msgr. Jean Pelletier. The chancellor of the Archdiocese of Quebec told CNA that the ordinations are not valid because they are contrary to the very “nature of the Catholic priesthood”, which is male.

“To be a priest is not a right,” explained the monsignor. “Even a man cannot just become a priest because he decides he wants to be a priest. The priesthood is a calling that has to be recognized by the Church.”

The ordinations Monday came at the end of a three-day international conference on the ordination of women in Ottawa. The boat set sail from Gananoque (Thousand Islands), west of Ottawa. It sailed between the Canadian and U.S. borders.

Of the nine women, seven were American, one was German and one was Canadian. Four were ordained priests and five were ordained deacons. This was the first known women’s ordination ceremony in North America.

Two women bishops conducted the ceremony. They had been ordained priests on a boat in the Danube River, along with another five women, in 2002, but all seven were excommunicated the following year. Some expect the new ordinands to face excommunication as well.

In a telephone interview from Quebec City, Msgr. Pelletier cited Article 1024 of the Church’s Code of Canon Law, which states that only a baptized male can receive ordination.

He also explained the significance of the male priesthood in relation to the feminine image of the Church and the Catholic understanding of the Church as the bride of Christ. The male priest, as the spouse, respects and completes this important complementary image.

Msgr. Pelletier said the ordination ceremony was a “gesture empty of meaning.

“The ordinations are recognized only by the women themselves,” he said. “Where will they exercise their ministry? No Catholic parish could accept them.”

Msgr. Pelletier said Catholics should know that none of the sacraments performed by these women, such as Eucharist and reconciliation, has any value. However, he clarified, they, like anyone else, could baptize in situations of emergency.

The monsignor added that, given the Church’s understanding of the priesthood, it could seem to some that the Church is against women, but this is not the case. He recalled recent comments by Cardinal Marc Ouellet of Quebec, who said that in the Gospel women are regarded as more important than men. Mother Mary, he said, was a notch above the Apostles.

Spokespeople from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops said the bishops were not issuing any statements about Monday’s event.

The Women’s Ordination Conference, who promoted the ordinations, did not reply to a request for an interview.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
23

Liturgical Calendar

April 23, 2014

Wednesday within the Octa ve of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Gospel
Date
04/22/14
04/21/14
04/20/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Acts 3:1-10
Gospel:: Lk 24:13-35

Saint of the Day

St. Adalbert of Prague »

Saint
Date
04/21/14
04/20/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Homily
Date
04/22/14
04/21/14
04/20/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: