Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Hanging out with seminarians

Sunday we started what will be a new tradition in Piqua: hosting a summer cook-out for seminarians.

It started with a conversation over supper, earlier this year, with a couple other priests and several seminarians; I don't even remember where we were--but the point was made that seminarians don't see a lot of each other over the summer. Then someone else said, what if we had a summer cookout? And somewhere along the line I said, "we could do that in Piqua..." and then I asked the seminarian staying with us in Piqua to spread the word...and then it happened.

We had about 20 guys, most came up from Cincinnati, but a few came from up north. We could easily have more if things work out next year. Afterward, we talked about what we could do to encourage more prospective seminarians to come along.

It was easy: burgers, brats, cole slaw, pop, beer, watermelon, ice cream. A parishioner donated a couple of cheesecakes, so we barely touched the melons and never got to the ice cream. Once most everyone showed up, we went over to church and prayed Vespers, then we came back over to the rectory and had pop, beer, pretzels and then the stuff came off the grill. The whole thing cost about $200, and another priest of the archdiocese chipped in half.

I wish you could have met these guys. Their ages were all over the map, but mostly in their 20s and 30s. The kind of guys I think you'd be happy to have your daughters going out with--if they weren't headed to the seminary. I remember when priests were good to me as a seminarian, and I'm very glad to do the same in turn.

Please keep praying for more priests, and please don't hesitate to give encouragement to any men you meet you think might make a good priest or deacon. Some guys just need someone to tell them, "you could be a good priest!"

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Rather than praying for more priests, shouldn't we be praying for better priests?

Peyton's said...

what an honor to host such an event!

Fr Martin Fox said...

Peyton:

It was fun and the guys had a good time!

Anonymous:

There is no question we need more priests; and "better" priests is always good too. Sorry you are so unhappy with us priests.

Anonymous said...

Fr: It's just that your statement seemed to me like praying for more lawyers rather than better lawyers.

Reading your response closely, it seems that you you are sure we need more priests, but unsure that we need better priests?

htm said...

Anonymous,

Are you this critical of everyone, or have you chosen this blog as a vent? I'm sorry you feel you must pick at random comments and miss the message as a whole. "More priests", "better priests", why do they have to be separate? Just pray and God will do as He sees fit - as always.

Anonymous said...

htm, i am interested in people who take the time to blog about issues. They are saying, "listen to me, I have something important to tell you". It's like walking through the park and hearing someone on a stump talking to a few crowded around him. You can walk away, or you can step closer to listen. I often step closer to listen. I USUALLY find the blogger (like this one) is telling the listeners to DO something: vote for this, fight that.
I hope that answers your question. Father's words strongly suggest to me that he believes that MORE priests is the goal. Getting some better priests is "good too", but not the real goal. I find that fascinating, don't you? You think I'm missing the message as a whole, but I don't think I am (looking at the words written). It's like asking me to pray for more healthcare provisers in this country. Is that waht we need, or do we need better quality healthcare?

Anonymous said...

htm, I should have added that I'm not merely trying to pick a wards. I shoud be more clear about my point: while I have not had the pleasure of being a parishioner in this particular blogger's parish and therefore make no comment as to him, I can tell you with the authority of a lifelong churchgoer that I have often been told from the pulpit to pray for "more vocations" from a long line of uninspiring and out-of-touch clergymen. (Again, present company excluded of course.) So, my antennae naturally go up when I am asked to pray for more. The only great priests I've had were in college. So I don't pray for an increase in numbers, I pray for more priests like the ones I had in college.

Anonymous said...

Just a suggestion. When you have your seminarian get together, why not invite the junior high and high school boys in your parish to join you. Seems like an ideal opportunity to recruit.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Anonymous:

At the cookout, we did discuss the idea of inviting high school boys. However, anything involving anyone under 18 means many complications due to liability and child protection policies. The practical solution is, rather, to have the youth group sponsor an event and then I go.

Also, this cookout was at my house, and inviting anyone under 18 to my house is very ill-advised.

As far as wanting "better priests." I already said I was in favor of it; however, when one says--as you or another Anonymous did, about praying "rather" for better priests, that is simply a different agenda from mine.

My agenda was to call for more priests. That they be good, holy priests goes without a great deal of commentary or explanation--at least for almost everyone else.

On the other hand, making a point about how we need "better" priests--and thus making a negative assessment of the priests we have--is not my agenda. It may be yours.

Anonymous said...

I would think you would want all priests to be better at the job than they were yesterday. My mistake.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, and we all want you to be more christian tomorrow...

Give it a rest. The event was for seminarians, hence "more" is appropriate, as it is the avenue of getting more priests. If the event was for all priest in the area, then "better" would have been more appropriate.

Maybe you should just pray instead of writing such smug comments. Praise the event instead of finding fault with it.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Second-to-last anonymous:

Constructive comments are always welcome, agree or disagree; snark not so much.

And to all anonymouses--anonymice:

If you comment anonymously, I ask that you sign with a name, or initials; it doesn't have to be real; but it helps sort out comments. Thanks.

PM said...

Dear Anon, I don't know who "we all" is, but you're confusing and commingling the anon posters here, so I initial below. How's this for a constructive comment:

The tone of this blog, as evidenced by this string, often mirrors what is so wrong with the current administration of the RCC: a sense of we are going to tell you what to do: that is, pray for more of the same. How insulting. I long for the priests of yesterday who had a sense of humility, a sense of mea culpa, a sense that they should try harder, pray harder, work harder.

A sense that the priest had an obligation to the people and not vice versa.

The recent scandal of the church showed us that today's church administrators are different from when I was a boy. So a little less telling me what to pray for, please. Especially MORE priests.

Fr Martin Fox said...

PM:

My asking, "please pray for more priests" is "insulting"?

M'kay.

Anonymous said...

In this climate, it's like asking me to pray for more government workers.

PM said...

In this climate, it's like asking me to pray for more government workers. -PM (The sig didn't take earlier.)

htm said...

PM -

We do need more priests. That point cannot be denied. Our current priests, whether good or bad are overworked and often unappreciated. As a victim of one of the bad, I can pray for more priests and mean every word of it. I cannot condemn all for the sins of a few.

To pray for more government workers is purely in how you see the government. So to in how you see the priests. If you look at the group as a whole as bad, I wouldn't want to pray for more either. But, I believe there are more good than bad and feel for all those who are held to account for the sins of their brothers.

If I am a bad parent does it mean all parents are bad? I don't think so. So why do we find it so easy to lump all priests together for the sins of a few?

Pray for more, pray for better, JUST PRAY.

PM said...

htm, I don't know that your blanket statement "our current priests are overworked" is necessarily true. I know several priests and if I made my list of the 10 most overworked people I know, the priests wouldn't be on the list. I wonder if there are stats on this, as compared to other public servants. I know the stats saying that we have fewer priests per parishioner, but that doesn't necessarily mean the priests are overworked. It could mean the work is just not getting done!

And you're not understanding what I meant by praying for better priests. I will own that as my failure in not being clear. I'm not talking about "bad priests" as some sort of group to point at. I think that each priest can and should try to be a better priest tomorrow than he was today. I haven't heard that sentiment expressed on this blog.

Jackie said...

PM

I absolutely agree - we need priests to want to be holier men and priests. To want it everyday, to work at it everyday, to pray for it everyday.

Of course, we need lay people to want to be holier men and women. To want it everyday, to work at it everyday, to pray for it everyday. I didn't hear that from any of the comments you posted.

I also don't, necessarily, think you don't believe - even though you didn't overtly say it.

I think we need more priests and that, by definition means, holy priests. I wouldn't necessarily spell that out - but apparently you need that - for clarity.

I think we need more priest (holy ones) because I think the 'mega' parishes we have in this (and many other) diocese aren't as helpful in creating a church family as smaller ones.

I think we need more priests (holy ones) because I think the it would be better for priests in their quest for holiness to live in small communities.

I think we need more priest (holy ones) so that they can have more contact(and better, holy, pure - just for clarity) with lay people - in our high schools, in our grade schools, in nursing homes, visiting families for dinner, etc so that you get to know priests (holy ones) as real people.

This is not only good for lay people (holy ones) and for vocations (more and holy) BUT also for the priests (holy and not so holy ones) as they need to know their 'kids'. We don't call them Father because we can't remember their first names!

Now - I happen to be acquainted with this particular priest - Fr. Fox - as well as a number of priests in the Archdiocese. Fr. Fox is a good, holy man who wants to be holier. I know a few of the priests that were in seminary around the same time - these priests strive mightily to be very good priests - which to be clear - means HOLY, GODLY, FAITHFUL MEN.

We as lay people - who ought to work to be GODLY, HOLY people - have an obligation to pray for our priests, kick them in the butt (with love) when they deserve it, cut them slack when they aren't perfect (cause they aren't but neither are we) and help them be holy by praying very hard for them.

Now you've heard it - very clearly I think - on this blog - at least in the com box.

Anonymous said...

O.K., I will jump in here. I pray for more and better priests every day. I pray that the men in the Vatican will open their hearts to the Holy Spirit and see that there are many married men and women being called by God to serve God's people as priests. Our parish has over 16,000 parishioners. It is a mega church. We cannot build another church in the area, and we cannot have more masses because there are not enough priests (good or bad) to go around. I know of parishes that are served by priests from other countries, and the people can't understand what the priest is saying. Father Fox wrote about his trip to Mexico where parishes go without priests for months at a time. When we go without a priest we also go without the Eucharist. I think this is a sin, and I think God weeps. We all know there is no biblical reason for priests to be celibate. The Vatican has issued a statement saying there is no biblical reason for women to be denied the priesthood. The solution to the priest shortage is evident. Please pray with me that the men in the Vatican will open their hearts to the Holy Spirit.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Anonymous 12:14

(Again, I ask that we stop doing this "anonymous" stuff--just sign a screen name, it can be Tom Sawyer or Frodo, but at least we have a name...)

Sorry but that won't hunt.

The Church literally cannot ordain women, any more than the Church can invent a new sacrament, or declare a new element in the chemical table.

Jesus founded the Church and created the sacraments, and imparted to the Church the authority to act in his name.

He called the Apostles and gave them the authority to offer the Eucharistic Sacrifice and to call others to continue the mission until he returned. Jesus could have called women to this ministry, but--for whatever reason--he did not.

There is no sound argument for either ignoring, or explaining away, the fact that he did not do that.

Saying, oh, he was bound by his times and customs is nonsense, because the Gospels relate how he modified, and in some cases confronted directly, his times, customs, and even the Mosaic law that he--as God--handed down at Sinai. In Matthew, we hear over and over, Jesus saying, "you have heard Moses say...but I say..."

To say that Jesus didn't think of having women do it is to call into question that he is God. After all, everything about his coming was the result of a plan the Trinity made from the foundation of the world for our salvation. To suppose he "forgot" or didn't think of something is absurd.

To suppose he somehow expected and assumed we'd figure out the right time to modify or set aside his example, is a very strange--and ultimately utterly destructive--notion. Jesus came not to obfuscate, but to communicate--so to argue that he set an example, and then expected we'd figure out when to ignore that, is very strange.

To argue that Jesus *really* wanted it one way, but the Apostles messed it up, is flawed at least two ways.

First, it lacks evidence and contradicts evidence we do have.

We see in the Scriptures how many ways Jesus did confront the Apostles with a new way of thinking and acting; they did have to turn their entire way of thinking and believing--about what it means to be Jewish, about Gentiles, about Messianic hope, and about God--all around.

They navigated that entire revolution in their beliefs and actions, and yet we are to believe they were utterly unable to accept the notion of women priests? Where is the actual evidence for this?

When people argue this, I wonder if they realize that the idea of women being in leadership was not some alien notion in Jesus' time. The Old Testament shows us women as prophets of God and leaders of Israel. The New Testament shows us women exercising all manner of responsibility and leadership as well. And Gentile religions had women as "priests" or the equivalent. But--notably--while you find women prophets and queens and military leaders in the Old Testament, you will never find a women as a priest. Curious.

My point being, it is non-factual nonsense to assert as many do, that "the Apostles couldn't handle the idea." They "handled" many other new ideas far more challenging than that.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Anonymous:

I was going to add more, but in cutting-and-pasting, I lost the rest of what I wrote...

Let me attempt to summarize and draw this to a close...

On women clergy, there is a final argument that, again, doesn't work. Namely, that actually the early Church did ordain women, but that was shut down, for this or that reason.

Unfortunately for those who argue this, the evidence is too sketchy, and has to be interpreted in a non-neutral way, to support this. What ends up happening is that folks who believe this, resort to a kind of conspiracy-theory, claiming that those who perpetrated this oppression actually hushed up and cleaned up the historical record! A lot of problems with that approach, never mind that various ways of explaining how things played out are simply nonsense (such as DaVinci Code et al.)

About married priests...

Why assume you'll have lots more priests? Actual evidence for this? Protestant comparisons don't help, either because in fact they don't have vastly more vocations, or because comparisons fail to note that Protestant clergy often flow into, and out of, their ministerial vocations. The Governor of Ohio is an ordained minister, for example.

We have married Catholic clergy already--deacons. And do you know what is happening now? Married men considering a call as a deacon delay answering the call, because of their family obligations. Others decline--for the same reason. One must reasonably assume that will happen with married men thinking about being priests. So why assume we'll have a big influx? We may have some additional priests--yet have them for many fewer years, and in the end not see much overall improvement in numbers of priests.

Married priests means a new set of problems--which I can go into if you wish--to replace the problems we now experience with celibate priests. I think it's a case of "grass is greener" thinking, and the more we consider what those new problems would be, the idea isn't nearly so appealing as a solution. I mean, you may--after its all said and done, prefer those new problems to the ones we have; but maybe others wouldn't.

When folks make this point to me, I often respond, "I'm amused that folks think my life as a priest would be easier if I also had a wife and family to be responsible to!" I.e., maybe--maybe not.

Fr Martin Fox said...

Anon 12:14:

OK, one more point.

You say: "I pray that the men in the Vatican will open their hearts to the Holy Spirit and see that there are many married men and women being called by God to serve God's people as priests" (emphasis added).

Don't you think it is rather presumptuous to assume that your position represents the will of the Holy Spirit, and the position you don't hold represents not being "open" to the Holy Spirit?

I am unable to say whether "the men in the Vatican" are open to the Holy Spirit or not; nor can I say whether you are, or not. But I think I would be wrong in assuming you are not open to the Holy Spirit; and I think you are not entitled to make that assumption about others.

I don't simply assume my position is that of the Holy Spirit--which is the unavoidable conclusion of what you said about your position--i.e., if they'd open up, they'd do x, y, z...

I offered my reasons--and the Church's reasons--for supposing that what has transpired in history is faithful to the will of the Holy Spirit (which is the will of Christ).

The simple fact is that Christ has made it very difficult for the Church to do other than she is now doing, on this subject. He could have said, figure it out yourselves but instead, he said, do as I have done. Plus he said the Holy Spirit would always guide the Church--so we are forced to give considerable weight to how the Church has actually operated all these nearly 2,000 years. He could have made it easier; he didn't.

fwp said...

Father Fox,
I apologize for using anonymous. I also apologize for forcing you to try to defend the indefensible. Of course the Church can ordain women and married men. Jesus did choose women to follow him. He chose his own mother who was present when they received the Holy Spirit. He chose Mary Magdalene who along with Mary was present when Jesus was tortured and killed. They stood by Him while the men were holed up in a room somewhere. Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene first after he had risen, telling her to go tell the "others" of his rising. The Church refers to her as the "Apostle to the Apostles". While I am not a conspiracy theorist, I do find it interesting that I was taught in a Catholic school that Mary Magdalene was a prostitute when she was no such thing.

There is also the matter of Junia, referred to in Romans 16:7 as outstanding among the apostles. She was referred to as a woman by the early church elders up until the 1200s when Aegidius of Rome referred to her as a man. There are many instances in scripture of women in leadership roles, and of women holding church services in their homes in the early Church. While you refer to this as sketchy, the Pontifical Biblical Commission in 1976 found that "the New Testament does not settle in a clear way and once and for all whether women can be ordained priests". The commission voted in favor of the view that "scriptural grounds alone are not enough to exclude the possibility of ordaining women". The Commission also voted that "Christ's plan would not be transgressed by permitting the ordination of women".

These are just a few of the arguments for the ordination of women. There are many more. There is also Galatians 3:28 "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus". We are all (male and female) made in the image of God. So if God sees no difference between men and women, and since God is both male and female, I do not see how God's church can see otherwise.

I could go on at length about the priest sexual abuse crises, and how I don't feel it would have happened in such great numbers if women and married men were among the clergy. I will, however, say again that I feel it is a sin that there are Catholics who are going without the Eucharist for months at a time.

I know that there is nothing that I have said or could say that would convince you that women and married men should be priests. Likewise, there is nothing that you have said or could say that would convince me that they should not.

You are correct in saying that I am only assuming what the Holy Spirit has to say, and I apologize for that.

Fr Martin Fox said...

FWP:

Of course the Church can ordain women and married men.

No one disputes that the Church can ordain married men; it does so already. The Church cannot ordain women. That is not my opinion; that is the ex cathedra statement of the Successor of St. Peter. When the pope teaches ex cathedra, the matter is settled.

Jesus did choose women to follow him. He chose his own mother who was present when they received the Holy Spirit. He chose Mary Magdalene who along with Mary was present when Jesus was tortured and killed. They stood by Him while the men were holed up in a room somewhere. Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene first after he had risen, telling her to go tell the "others" of his rising.

All true (except that the Apostle John was also at the cross) but irrelevant to the question of who Jesus called to Apostolic ministry.

The Church refers to her as the "Apostle to the Apostles".

Yes…and your point is?

While I am not a conspiracy theorist, I do find it interesting that I was taught in a Catholic school that Mary Magdalene was a prostitute when she was no such thing.

I don’t know what Mary Magdalene’s profession actually was, and I am utterly amazed you can be certain about this subject. How old are you?

As far as where that comes from, I’m sure you can find out, and why. Whether the tradition of Mary Magdalene having been a prostitute is true or not, is--again--irrelevant to this discussion.

There is also the matter of Junia, referred to in Romans 16:7 as outstanding among the apostles. She was referred to as a woman by the early church elders up until the 1200s when Aegidius of Rome referred to her as a man.

Also irrelevant; assume Junia was a woman. So what? Your citation proves nothing. It does not say anything about whether she was an “apostle” in any sense, let alone an Apostle in the fullest sense.

You will find, in Scripture--as in life--that words are used in varying degrees of strength. Hence people are called “brother” who are full, blood brothers; while others are clearly not. This is not usually confusing to most people and its tendentious to try to prove anything by it.

Fr Martin Fox said...

There are many instances in scripture of women in leadership roles--

A point I made myself, I believe, above; and, again, irrelevant.

--and of women holding church services in their homes in the early Church.

And this, too, is irrelevant. If the churches in Piqua get blown down in a tornado, and a prominent woman of the parish opens her home for me to offer Mass, how does that make her a priest?

While you refer to this as sketchy, the Pontifical Biblical Commission in 1976 found that "the New Testament does not settle in a clear way and once and for all whether women can be ordained priests". The commission voted in favor of the view that "scriptural grounds alone are not enough to exclude the possibility of ordaining women". The Commission also voted that "Christ's plan would not be transgressed by permitting the ordination of women".

Oh now you’re really being tendentious.

Now it is true I haven’t read the document you refer to, but that isn’t a big deal. For one thing, the Pontifical Biblical Commission generally doesn’t settle questions, but examines them and gives reports. It’s the job of others, above all the pope, to settle a question.

If you look at the history of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, you’ll find reports from different periods that reach significantly different--if not contradictory--conclusions. Their work is not meant to be definitive.

But it’s really laughable that you’d trot this out, as if it represented some blockbuster. Let’s think about this, shall we? If this blockbuster was there all this time, you think Pope John Paul II--who defined, dogmatically, ex cathedra, that the Church cannot ordain women--didn’t know about it? Or did, but somehow hoped you wouldn’t? Or you’d be nice enough not to mention it?

Or to put it more simply--are you really claiming that you are a better interpreter of the data--including the report you cite--than the successor of St. Peter? Really? Pope John Paul examined this subject closely, and gave his answer, some years ago. What a fool he would have to have been to have done so, if this document seriously undermines his point. Others have written more extensively on this--this is not my area of expertise--and you can find their work easily if you want.

I will mention only in passing the invalid appeal to “sola scriptura,” and move on.

Fr Martin Fox said...

These are just a few of the arguments for the ordination of women.

I'm sorry, but--you haven’t offered a single one that has any validity.

There are many more. There is also Galatians 3:28 "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus". We are all (male and female) made in the image of God. So if God sees no difference between men and women, and since God is both male and female, I do not see how God's church can see otherwise.

I’m sorry, that’s an embarrassing argument. “God sees no difference between men and women”? Seriously? So God cannot see what your two eyes and mine see clearly? What any medical intern had better be able to see? You’re using Paul’s statement to “prove” something it’s obviously not meant to prove, because it’s false.

Of course there are differences--often very consequential ones--between Jews and Greeks, slaves and free persons, and males and females. Paul didn't deny that; but his point is they don’t prevent our unity in the one Body of Christ.

If that’s your point, I agree, but it is, again, irrelevant to the question of who can be ordained.

I could go on at length about the priest sexual abuse crises, and how I don't feel it would have happened in such great numbers if women and married men were among the clergy.

Thanks for not taking us down the road of sexist, misandric stereotypes. Apart from the fact that your only support for this assertion is what you “feel,” this, too, is utterly irrelevant. Unless you are prepared to assert that women are simply less sinful than men, then even if were true that male clergy are more prone to sexual or cover-up sins, then surely you’d concede that there must be some other sins that women priests would bring to clerical culture. Meaning we trade one set of sins for another.

Anonymous said...

Great post fwp!! Well researched! And all the good padre can come with is a mile long diatrbe of insults, innuendos, and so what's. That's very intellectual (sic).
You did such a wonderful job discussing women priests, I will limit my comments to married priests. You don't have a leg to stand on concerning married priests, Fr. Fox. The Catholic church has had married priests off and on throughout its history. Celibacy is new phenomenon in the scheme of things in the 2000 plus years of church history. Heaven's, we have even had popes who were married and fathered children, who, themselves became pope.
And, until two or three words in the creed separated the Roman church from the Eastern church, we were all united and had married priests. And the Eastern church still does. And it appears, at least on the surface, that the Eastern church has much less of a problem with abuse.
And the Roman Catholic church, at the present time, has married priests. Those Protestant ministers whe have converted to Catholicism and been permitted to be ordained were also permitted to keep their families.
And, finally, check out what the current pope is up to - taking advantage of the issues in the Anglican Church, he is inviting those priests to join the Roman church, and guess what, retain their families. (Although, I do believe that this is happening, not because of any specific issue with married clergy, but an attempt to bolster his conservative following.) Probably shooting himself in the foot in the long run on that one.
And I don't think the pope has spoken "ex-cathedra" on the issue of married priests. And please don't quote from some letter he might have written. Give me the "ex-cathedra" statement. And even then, I wonder how many proclamations that were considered "ex-cathedra" were reversed down the road. (And this ex-cathedra business is also a fairly new phenomenon in the church.)
Keep up the good work fwp. He wanted names, places, dates, etc. You gave him all that and he still persists in trying to discredit you prsonnaly, and not the facts.

George

Fr Martin Fox said...

George wrote:

I will limit my comments to married priests. You don't have a leg to stand on concerning married priests, Fr. Fox.

George, I wrote, “No one disputes that the Church can ordain married men; it does so already.” Those words are the first two lines I wrote in response to FWP. Didn’t you read what I wrote?

...we have even had popes who were married and fathered children, who, themselves became pope.

Which popes were those?

And, until two or three words in the creed separated the Roman church from the Eastern church, we were all united and had married priests.

Long before the East and West were divided, the Western Church established celibacy for priests fairly early on. It was mandated at the Council of Elvira in AD 306, and many church fathers speak of it as well established; but it was not always followed; the First Lateran Council (AD 1123) marked the advent of more effective enforcement.

And the Roman Catholic church, at the present time, has married priests.

True; hence what I said to FWP: “No one disputes that the Church can ordain married men; it does so already.” Can you please quote where I actually disputed either the existence of married priests, or that the Church can ordain married men?

And I don't think the pope has spoken "ex-cathedra" [sic] on the issue of married priests.

He didn't. He taught ex cathedra on the subject of women’s ordination, in Ordinatio Sacerdotalis,* May 22, 1994, where he said this:

Wherefore, in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church's divine constitution itself, in virtue of my ministry of confirming the brethren (cf. Lk 22:32) I declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church's faithful.

...he still persists in trying to discredit you prsonnaly [sic], and not the facts.

George, that is a calumny; please cite where I sought to discredit FWP personally.

* http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_letters/documents/hf_jp-ii_apl_22051994_ordinatio-sacerdotalis_en.html