One of the nation’s foremost champions for the cause of female deacons considers the Vatican’s new apostolic constitution — which in part opens top Vatican leadership roles to any baptized layperson, including women — an important step for Pope Francis’s vision, but not necessarily one that affects the future of women in the diaconate.
Catholic communities in the Amazon might be able to ordain married men to the priesthood under limited circumstances, based on the outcome of a meeting of bishops in Rome that issued its final report Saturday – although the document stopped short of a full-throated endorsement for the ordination of either married men or women deacons.
Catholic bishops are not fully utilizing Church law to maximize the role of women in decision making capacities, Indian Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Mumbai said on Oct. 23.
As the Vatican’s meeting on the Amazon draws to a close this week, one group is using the occasion to seek new roles for women in leadership, hosting a prayer vigil on Oct. 23 in support of women’s ordination to the priesthood and the diaconate.
German Cardinal Walter Kasper, considered a close theological adviser to Pope Francis, said that if during an upcoming meeting of bishops on the Amazon region the prelates asked for the ordination of married men, the Argentine pontiff would grant the request.