'I'd reject Church role in solidarity with women,' says McAleese
Former President Mary McAleese has said she would not become a cardinal of the Catholic Church, even if she was offered the title.
Ms McAleese, who has studied theology, raised the circumstances of women in the church, when asked if she would take on such a role.
"It's a very bad suggestion," she said, speaking at the National Library as part of the Inspiration Proclamation series on the 1916 Proclamation.
She was being interviewed by veteran journalist, broadcaster and historian John Bowman who pressed her on the matter.
"Are you saying you'd turn it down?" he asked.
"Absolutely, on the principle that when you have 600 million women thirsting - half of the Catholic Church is women, so there are 1.2 billion - so 600 million women.
"If you're thirsting in the desert, you know 600 million of you, I think giving a glass of red wine to one woman, it's really rather inadequate."