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article imagePhoenix Catholic church ordains female priest

By B. Thomas Cooper     Aug 31, 2010 in World
Phoenix - Vatican condemnation be damned, on Saturday Elaine Groppenbacher became the fourth female to be ordained a Catholic priest in the Phoenix area.
Groppenbacher was ordained into the priesthood by the Ecumenical Catholic Communion, considered to be a more liberal branch of the Catholic church. She received her holy orders from valley Bishop Peter Hickman.
The subject of ordaining female priests has become a hot-button issue among many Catholics, with the Vatican denouncing the actions, calling it “a crime against faith”. The Vatican maintains that women who attempt to become priests will automatically be excommunicated from the church.
In recent years, the Catholic Church has experienced a dramatic drop in membership, believed to be caused in great part by a spate of recent sex scandals within the clergy, as well as the church’s unwillingness to recognize women as ecumenical equals.
The Vatican, for their part, has publicly attempted to compare women priesthood to child molestation, a crime that has run rampant and unchecked among male Catholic priests for decades.
Kathy Vestermark, journalist for the Catholic News Agency has even gone so far as to question in a recent article whether the “Catholic Church hates women”. The article attempts to addresses the church’s official explanation, reassuring readers that indeed, the catholic church is sensitive to the needs of women, but thousands of Catholics throughout the world remain skeptical, with many members either leaving the church entirely, or adopting more liberal views, including those of allowing women into the priesthood.
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