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Why Women Can Never Be Ordained Priests 

By Chris Mbunwe, *Gisele Tata & *Glory Mbuwil 
 
The Archbishop Emeritus of the Douala Arch Diocese, His Eminence, Christian Wiyghansai Shaaghan Cardinal Tumi, has said, though Catholic Women, especially the Catholic Women Association, CWA, are women of strong faith who have achieved a lot, the church, per its constitution, can never endorse that women should be ordained Priests.
Cardinal Tumi was speaking to reporters at the end of the Holy Mass on July 17, during celebrations to mark the 50th anniversary of the CWA that took place at the St. Joseph Metropolitan Cathedral in Big Mankon Bamenda. Tumi said a majority of Christians are women and, inspired by their matron, the Blessed Virgin Mary, the CWA, has for 50 years, proved to the world that they are women of strong faith. 
“They are more spiritual than men and we see them doing great evangelisation work. Your question, whether they cannot be ordained as Reverend Priests is not the opinion of the Catholic Church. Let me tell you that Jesus Christ never ordained women, all His Apostles were men,” Tumi remarked.
The Cardinal recalled that he was once the Spiritual Director of CWA when he was the Rector of the Major Seminary Bambui where Priests are formed. 
“As their Spiritual Director I used to tell them that if they write any letter to a priest, let us see it because some of them were firing,” he said. Considering the numerical strength of the CWA and great role they play in church and society, Cardinal Tumi intimated that, “if the CWA is not intimate with us, the church will run into difficulties or it will even collapse”.
Earlier, in a compelling sermon, the Archbishop of Bamenda, His Grace, Cornelius Fontem Esua, welcomed CWA members from all over Cameroon and USA for making it to Bamenda and urged them to remain focused in carrying out the task God has assigned to them. He harped on theme of the golden Jubilee, “CWA as Agents of Evangelisation with renewed vigour and commitment through faith and love in Action (James 2:17-18). He told the women that they have proved themselves as capable of being mothers of the church; “you are a blessing to the Catholic church”.
The host, the Archdiocesan President of the CWA of Bamenda, praised God for convening his sisters from the Ecclesiastical provinces of Garoua, Yaounde , Douala and Bertoua to Bamenda and said “the promotion of holistic development of every Catholic woman has been fundamental to enabling us all to face the challenges of the contemporary world.” She thanked Northwest Governor, Aldoph Lele L’Afrique and the SDF National Chairman, Ni John Fru Ndi, for their immense support towards the preparations for the event.
The National President of CWA, Professor Theresa Nkuo Akenji, expressed profound gratitude to the co-founders Elizabeth Tamanjong and Mama Rebecca Ekema who are still alive seeing their work blossom. She said the seed that was sown by these women some 50 years ago has brought the membership to 20.000 women. She enumerated the achievements of CWA to include; reaching out to prisons, orphanages with gifts and preaching the gospel of change to them, construction of structures and many more outside the care they give to the church, and its ministers, including the Rev. Sisters.
A moment of great excitement came when Mama Anna Foncha, widow of John Ngu Foncha who clocked 90 years on July 16, was raised to the pulpit at the ceremonial ground and she intoned a song: “What our husbands, Fathers Mothers could not do, Mary did it for us.” She thanked all who came to witness the occasion especially, their distinguished guest, the Minister of Women Empowerment and the Family, Marie Therese Abena Ondoua. 
“We began small, today you are in thousands, the baton is with you and we know you will continue to follow the footsteps of Mary our mother,” Anna Foncha intimated.
In her speech, the Minister said she was elated to be associated with CWA because of the role they play in church and their families in educating children. She admonished women to fight child trafficking, forced and early marriages, ensure decent dressing of children.
She appealed to the population to avoid any form of violence against women, genital mutilation, breast ironing. She stressed on regular vaccination of children against common diseases.
The National Chairman of the Social Democratic Front , SDF, John Fru Ndi, congratulated the Catholic Church for condemning and fighting homosexuality, especially the CWA that staged a march across Cameroon denouncing homosexuality and Lesbianism.
To him, the CWA at 50 is just taking off and should carry its mission of evangelisation to war-torn countries like Isreal, Palestine, Afganistan, Syria, Central Africa and so on. 
“We are in a world where evil has taken us hostage, wars are every where and today Boko Haram is invading our territory, please, CWA members, take evangelisation and pray for these countries,” Fru Ndi averred.
Highlights of the occasion were the launching of Lady Anna Foncha’s Tribute Book and awards to CWA members who have distinguished themselves.
*(National Polytechnic Journalism Students On Internship)

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