Archbishop claims he acted to “protect the vocation”
TWO women have been expelled from a Granada convent because they were foreign, according to claims.
The Archbishop of Granada Francisco Javier Martínez ordered the postulants be removed from the Our Lady of Sorrow Convent on February 25.
The pair, from the Indian state of Kerala, had arrived in the city earlier that month after failing to settle at a Dominican convent in Huescar, in the north of the province.
The expulsions were confirmed by Sor María Jesus, the Mother Superior at the convent, on March 29.
She added the pair had been saddened by the decision.
Defending his decision, the Archbishop said in a statement: “No foreigner can enter a convent or monastery in the Archdiocese of Granada without having belonged to a congregation in their country of origin.
“Many foreign youths spend time in convents only to be able to live in Spain. We are trying to safeguard the authenticity of the vocation.”
However, newspaper reports claim the two women, aged 18 and 21, had started their religious teachings in India and had come to Spain with the blessing of a Catholic bishop from their home state.
Since taking up the post in 2003, Archbishop Francisco Javier Martínez has broken with tradition set by his two predecessors and blocked foreign applications to Granada convents.
Controversy has followed Archbishop Francisco Javier Martínez since taking up the post in 2003. He withdrew seminaries from theology classes at Granada University last year and forbade them from using the internet.
He is also due in court to face accusations of defamation and psychological injury.