Father Bill Brennan, a Milwaukee, Wisconsin Jesuit, was recently punished by Catholic Church authorities for celebrating Mass last month with Janice Sevre-Duszynska, of the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests, in violation of church rules.
Jeremy Langford, spokesman for the Society of Jesus, said that Father Brennan, 92, remains a Jesuit, can still celebrate Mass privately and hear confessions with other Jesuits, but can no longer celebrate Mass or other sacraments in public, reports the Daily Mail
Langford added that the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and the Wisconsin Province of the Jesuits agreed on the sanctions against Father Brennan.
The Province said in a statement: "The Province did not approve or sanction the event, and regrets Father Brennan's participation in it."
Women are forbidden by the Catholic Church to become priests, but some have been ordained and celebrate Mass outside of the official church.
Father Brennan, who is retired from active ministry and living in a Wisconsin retirement home, told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
: "Sometimes in our lives we have to trust our conscience and bring about the consequences. I wasn't trying to show off for the ladies."
Father Brennan worked as a missionary in Belize and Honduras for 16 years, worked in the U.S. as a teacher at Jesuit-run Marquette University High School and was a pastor at St. Patrick Church in Milwaukee.