Posts Tagged female deacons
Francis to create commission to study female deacons in Catholic church / National Catholic Reporter
Pope Francis has announced he will create a commission to study the possibility of allowing women to serve as deacons in the Catholic church, signaling an historic openness to the possibility of ending the global institution’s practice of an all-male clergy.
“The pontiff indicated he would create such a commission during a meeting at the Vatican Thursday with some 900 leaders of the world’s congregations of Catholic women religious, who asked him during a question-and-answer session why the church excludes women from serving as deacons.
“The women religious, meeting with the pope as part of the triennial assembly of the International Union of Superiors General (UISG), told Francis that women has served as deacons in the early church and asked: ‘Why not construct an official commission that might study the question?’
“The pope responded that he had spoken about the matter once some years ago with a ‘good, wise professor’ who had studied the use of female deacons in the early centuries of the church. Francis said it remained unclear to him what role such deacons had.”
By Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Voice of the Faithful’s Women’s Initiative is dedicated to the proposition that all baptized Catholics—women and men—have equal access to all positions within the Church and have a voice in all decision-making processes. VOTF encourages conversation on all ministries and opportunities for women, but we focus our project work primarily on the restoration of the female diaconate.
Women Deacons: How Long? — paper on restoring the female diaconate to the Church (15 pages)
Suggested Readings: Women in the Church — additional resources and information on women’s roles (9 pages)
Canadian Archbishop Paul-Andre Durocher of Gatineau, Quebec, said the synod should reflect on the possibility of allowing for female deacons as it seeks ways to open up more opportunities for women in church life.
“Where possible, qualified women should be given higher positions and decision-making authority within church structures and new opportunities in ministry, he told Catholic News Service Oct. 6.
“Discussing a number of proposals he offered the synod fathers to think about, he said, ‘I think we should really start looking seriously at the possibility of ordaining women deacons because the diaconate in the church’s tradition has been defined as not being ordered toward priesthood but toward ministry.’
“Currently, the Catholic Church permits only men to be ordained as deacons. Deacons can preach and preside at baptisms, funerals and weddings, but may not celebrate Mass or hear confessions.
By Carol Glatz, Catholic News Service, in National Catholic Reporter — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Voice of the Faithful® encourages interested Catholics to join with FutureChurch supporters and ask U.S. bishops to open a dialogue “about restoring our early traditions of married and celibate priests and male and female deacons.”
In an open letter to U.S. bishops, FutureChurch urges bishops “to discern the needs of all the people of God and to listen to Pope Francis’ call for courage in realizing reforms that will bring new vitality to Eucharistic communities.”
You can join this effort by clicking here to send your bishop a copy of the letter.
We need to shout loudly for our bishops to hear our Spirit-filled voices and help us change the Church.