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Saturday 16 December 2017

Mass boycotter will pray all day

Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

A PENSIONER who has organised a one-day mass boycott to protest at the Catholic church's treatment of women will spend today in prayer and meditation at her home.

Jennifer Sleeman -- who celebrated her 81st birthday last Thursday -- will not attend mass today but has decided to dedicate her entire day to spiritual matters while at home in West Cork.

She told the Sunday Independent that she will not do media interviews today -- nor will she pose for photographs lest they detract from her core message.

"I will have a quiet day -- I will stay at home and say a few prayers, meditate for a bit and do some reflection," she said.

"I suppose my prayer is for reform and for the church to hear our plea for change," she added.

The pensioner admitted she has been "totally taken aback" by the incredible global reaction to her one-day mass boycott call. Jennifer proposed that people stay away from mass today to underline their support for church reform and the better treatment of women.

Her call triggered a worldwide chain-reaction -- and generated headlines from the US to Canada, Australia, the UK, France, Germany and Italy.

To coincide with her mass boycott, groups in the US, Canada and Australia will now hold their own protests and special events today.

Jennifer said a lot of people want to support her call -- but will do so in a manner that doesn't involve missing mass.

"I absolutely understand their point of view -- I go to mass regularly myself so I totally understand their position," she explained.

Sunday Independent

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