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Woman celebrates Mass, ignoring threats



Published: Sun, July 3, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



LYON, France (AP) -- A French woman defied a threat of excommunication by the Roman Catholic Church and held a ceremony proclaiming herself a priest Saturday.

In a small ceremony on a boat, Genevieve Beney was joined by other women from around the world who have taken similar dramatic action to draw attention to the church's policy against female priests.

"This is not a rupture with the Roman Catholic Church," Beney said in a statement read aloud before she boarded the boat. "If there is a rupture on my part, it is with a situation that I consider to be obsolete and unjust to women."

The Vatican has not commented on the case but has made clear it sees no room for debate about opening up the priesthood to women. The church says Jesus chose men to be his apostles and that the practice of ordaining only men must stand. In 2002, seven women conducted an ordination ceremony and were promptly excommunicated.

from the church.




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