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Priesthood 101

Letter to the Editor | Monday, September 21, 2009

In response to Malcolm Phelan’s letter (“Bless me Father, for I have questioned,” Sept. 21), here is the Church’s answer.

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 1577: “‘Only a baptized man (vir) validly receives sacred ordination.’ The Lord Jesus chose men (viri) to form the college of the [12] apostles, and the apostles did the same when they chose collaborators to succeed them in their ministry. The college of bishops, with whom the priests are united in the priesthood, makes the college of the twelve an ever-present and ever- active reality until Christ’s return. The Church recognizes herself to be bound by this choice made by the Lord himself. For this reason the ordination of women is not possible.”

The Church cannot make women priests because Christ instituted a male priesthood. It is a doctrinal issue and it cannot change. Neither Pope Benedict XVI nor University President Emeritus Fr. Theodore Hesburgh can create a female priesthood.

Doug Carder


Keenan Hall

Sept. 21