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PRIESTS TOLD TO SEE WOMEN AS SISTERS, MOTHERS

Priests must view women as sisters or mothers to remain faithful to their celibacy vow, Pope John Paul II said in a letter to Roman Catholic clergymen.

The pope described the letter, released Friday by the Vatican, as stressing "the importance of women in the life of the priest.""The dimensions of mother and sister are the two fundamental dimensions of the relationship between women and priests," he said.

"If in a relationship with a woman the gift and choice of celibacy should become endangered, the priest cannot but strive earnestly to remain faithful to his own vocation."