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Priests Warned to Avoid Ordination of Woman

November 10, 2001|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Roman Catholic Bishop Matthew Clark has warned priests in his diocese not to attend the upcoming ordination of an excommunicated woman by a breakaway parish.

Clark called the Nov. 17 ceremony for Mary Ramerman of Spiritus Christi Church a "public and formally schismatic act," the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reported.

The Vatican forbids female priests. Any diocesan priest who attends the event, Clark wrote, may be penalized under canon law.

Spiritus Christi members left Corpus Christi parish in 1998 over issues such as women's roles and same-sex marriage.

Ramerman is scheduled to be ordained by California's Bishop Peter E. Hickman, who was consecrated in 1996 through the Ecumenical Communion of Catholic and Apostolic Churches, a loose group of bishops who are independent of the papacy.

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