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Mistresses, wives speak out.

VATICAN CITY * For years, they have been invisible and often afraid to identify themselves. But the women sometimes dubbed "God's rivals" are no longer willing to remain silent.

Twenty-six Italian women who are married to or in relationships with Catholic priests want the world's bishops to overturn clerical celibacy when they meet in Rome for their global synod on the family in October.

And they are angry that Pope Francis has not responded to a letter they sent earlier this year urging him to relax the Roman Catholic church's mandatory position on clergy celibacy and to recognize their relationships.

"We are aware that the serious foreign political news, particularly in the Middle East, has left little time for our stories, which in the face of violence and death, seem inevitably to disappear," the women said in a statement. "However we wish to resume dialogue with all who find themselves in our situation and with the Holy Father."

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Title Annotation:clergy celibacy; US BRIEFS
Publication:National Catholic Reporter
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:4EXVA
Date:Oct 10, 2014
Words:157
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