Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) touted the notion that women someday could become priests.
Speaking at an event at Georgetown University last week, Pelosi said that she had been “attracted” to the notion of being a priest because of the power of the clerical office. But she added it was disappointing Pope Francis had not permitted the ordination of women to the Catholic priesthood.
“Every day [priests] have the power … of turning bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ, that is real power, now we’re talking power, and that’s why I was more attracted to that than being a nun,” Pelosi said during a conversation with Rev. Jim Wallis, the director of the Georgetown University Center on Faith and Justice, according to the Washington Examiner.
“On the other hand, maybe women will be able to do that as well, that’s something to think about, something I was hoping the pope would do.”
Last year, Pope Francis told America Magazine that ordaining women presents “a theological problem.”
“Why can a woman not enter ordained ministry?” Pope Francis asks. “It is because the Petrine principle has no place for that.” The “Petrine principle” refers to the apostle Peter, who is regarded as the first pope of Catholicism.
Despite the long-revered tradition, this is not the first time Pelosi has clashed with the church hierarchy. At the same Georgetown event, the former House speaker chastised Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco for his public comment barring her from receiving communion over her stance on abortion.
“I have a problem with my archbishop,” she said, “and I figure that’s his problem, not mine. He made it very clear, maybe we’re not all God’s children. Maybe we do not have free will.”