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A welcome call for priesthood reforms | READER COMMENTARY

In this May 21, 2001 file photo, Cardinals William Henry Keeler, right, Archbishop of Baltimore, and Theodore Edgar McCarrick, Archbishop of Washington, D.C., leave a major meeting with cardinals from around the world attended by Pope John Paul II in the Synod Hall at the Vatican. (AP Photo/ Massimo Sambucetti, File)
In this May 21, 2001 file photo, Cardinals William Henry Keeler, right, Archbishop of Baltimore, and Theodore Edgar McCarrick, Archbishop of Washington, D.C., leave a major meeting with cardinals from around the world attended by Pope John Paul II in the Synod Hall at the Vatican. (AP Photo/ Massimo Sambucetti, File) (Massimo Sambucetti/AP)

Baltimore We Are the Church endorses Rev. Phillip J Brown’s strong call for reform of the system for training Catholic priests (“A call to reform Catholic priest selection,” Nov. 19). Father Brown rightly states that the church must “be guided by scientific data and well-articulated criteria in judging whether a man is suitable to be ordained a priest,” and argues that “Laypersons, and especially women, must be an integral part of seminary faculties with prominent roles in the formation and evaluation process.”

Father Brown and the church hierarchy must know that we lay people, who have also been shamed and outraged by the double scandal of child abuse and cover up in the church, have a stake in the reform of priestly formation. We look forward to the transparency Father Brown is implementing at St. Mary’s Seminary and University. It will be an opportunity for Baltimore’s lay Catholics to be fully informed about the training of “our” seminarians and to provide input to the process. We will be watching to ensure that specific steps are taken at St. Mary’s Seminary and University to implement the reforms outlined by Father Brown and we will work with our fellow Catholics to promote these reforms in Catholic seminaries nationwide.

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Al Reichelt, Catonsville

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