Pope Francis is flanked by Vatican spokesman Greg Burke as he talks to reporters on his flight back from Sweden.
Pope Francis is flanked by Vatican spokesman Greg Burke as he talks to reporters on his flight back from Sweden. Ettore Ferrari

Pope bans women priests forever

POPE Francis has said he believes the Catholic Church's ban on women becoming priests is forever and will never be changed. He was speaking aboard a plane, taking him back to Rome from Sweden, when a reporter noted that the head of the Lutheran Church who welcomed him in Sweden was a woman and asked if the Catholic Church could allow women to be ordained as ministers in coming decades. "St Pope John Paul II had the last clear word on this and it stands, this stands,” Pope Francis said, referring to a 1994 document by Pope John Paul.



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