OK, don't get too excited about the new socially progressive head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis, just yet. Turns out, he has absolutely no plans to appoint any female cardinals at all.
Speaking exclusively to the Italian newspaper La Stampa, Pope Francis squashed rumors that he has plans to appoint women as cardinals:
"I don't know where this idea sprang from. Women in the Church must be valued not 'clericalised'. Whoever thinks of women as cardinals suffers a bit from clericalism."
OK good that we've cleared that up.
Pope Francis also tackled questions about the exclusion of divorced Catholics who have remarried outside of the church:
"I spoke about baptism and Communion as spiritual food that helps one to go on; it is to be considered a remedy not a prize. Some immediately thought about the sacraments for remarried divorcees, but I did not refer to any specific cases; I simply wanted to point out a principle. We must try to facilitate people's faith, rather than control it. Last year in Argentina I condemned the attitude of some priests who did not baptize the children of unmarried mothers. This is a sick mentality...The exclusion of divorced people who contract a second marriage from Communion is not a sanction," he said. "It is important to remember this."
The interview with Pope Francis is quite fascinating (he even discusses Christmas) and can be found in full here.
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