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Austrian bishop questions celibacy

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VERONIKA OLEKSYN | May 12, 2010 11:14 AM EST | AP

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VIENNA — An Austrian bishop who has pushed the Vatican for reforms said in an interview published Wednesday that the Catholic church should drop its celibacy requirement for priests.

Eisenstadt Bishop Paul Iby told the Die Presse daily that it should be up to priests to decide whether they want to live a celibate life and that he would welcome it if married men could be ordained.

"It should be at the discretion of every priest whether to live in voluntary celibacy or in a family," Die Presse quoted Iby as saying.

Iby, who offered to retire when he turned 75 in January, also said that eventually the ordination of women should be considered.