Ratzinger issues ultimatum to 'ordained' women
The Vatican has issued a solemn warning to seven Catholic women who were recently 'ordained' as priests, telling them that if they do not appeal for pardon by 22 July, they will be formally excommunicated.
The warning, issued by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, applies to a group of German, Austrian, and American Catholic women who participated late last month in ceremony at which a schismatic priest and self-proclaimed bishop attempted to ordain them to the priesthood. The women involved in the ceremony included several theologians and nuns.
The 29 June ceremony, which attracted worldwide attention, was led by Romulo Antonio Braschi, an Argentine priest, who broke with the Catholic Church in 1998 and was ordained a bishop in the schismatic Catholic Apostolic Church of Brazil. That sect in turn had broken away from the Vatican in 1945.
The warning, or "monitum," from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith reminds the women that in his 1994 apostolic letter Ordinatio Sacerdotalis, Pope John Paul II taught that "the Church has no authority to confer priestly ordination on women," and that this teaching "is to be definitively held by all the Church's faithful."
Declaration on Priestly Ordination of Catholic Women (VIS)
Catholic women in unofficial ordination (1/7/02)
11 Jul 2002