Ex Cathedra Statement?



Do you think that this is an ex cathedra statement:

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. (John Paul II, Ordinatio Sacerdotalis)

It seems to have all the requisite components, speaking in his capacity as Pope, declaring something of faith and morals and intending to bind on the universal Church. So, what say you?


Looks like an ex cathedra statement to me.


Sounds like one to me too.



Yeah, I thought so too. You always hear about the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption as the two ex cathedra statements, but this (seemingly unknown) document seems to definitely contain one as well.


This is what happens when things are taken out of context.

The beginning of paragraph 4, which you left out, says;

  1. Although the teaching that priestly ordination is to be reserved to men alone has been preserved by the constant and universal Tradition of the Church and firmly taught by the Magisterium in its more recent documents, at the present time in some places it is nonetheless considered still open to debate, or the Church’s judgment that women are not to be admitted to ordination is considered to have a merely disciplinary force.[FONT=Arial][size=2]

Shows that this is not an Ex Cathedra statement but a statement from the ordinary Magisterium of the Church, which is no less infallible.


Here is my personal opinion on it (note: it’s only an opinion):
I would say that Catholics are obliged to believe and follow it now. However, there is a possiblity that sometime in the future the teaching may be developed somewhat.



Or is it a teaching of the Ordinary Magisterium that is being proclaimed via the Extraordinary Magisterium?

The Assumption was taught by the Ordinary Magisterium for centuries before it was proclaimed by the Extraordinary Magisterium in Munificentissimus Deus.

Note, not trying to start an argument, just asking the question.*


It would seem clearly to be one to me, though “technically” it may not be considered as such since it was simply a restatement of long accepted dogma.

i.e. Nothing new heare just an effort to put the baby to bed once and for all.



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