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Message from Colm Holmes, Chair of We Are Church International

This is certainly a time of turmoil in our hierarchical church with cardinals and bishops openly attacking Pope Francis and each other.

I am writing to invite you to consider taking part in a worldwide campaign leading up to the meeting of Pope Francis and the Heads of Bishops Conferences in Rome in February 2019.

Your WAC Co-ordinating team has agreed that WAC International join US Reform Groups campaign “Time’s Up: Catholics Demand Truth”

A large number of U.S. Reform Groups (including DignityUSA; Call To Action; WOC; FutureChurch) launched this campaign in September 2018. They are organizing prayer vigils on the first Sunday of November, December, January and February – leading up to the February 2019 meeting in Rome of all the Heads of Bishop’s Conferences. The call for truth covers 4 main areas (see Appendix 1 below for full details):

i. Survivor Justice and Civil Recourse

ii. Church Transparency and Accountability

iii. Patriarchy Dismantled in all its forms

iv. Clericalism Dismantled in all its forms

You will find more details at this website http://catholictoo.org/.

From: Francophone Baptized Catholics Conference, 76 rue de la Verrerie, Paris 75004

31st August 2018,

Dear Very Holy Father,

Following the massive disclosures of a large number of scandals of the Church concerning the sexual abuse of minors by priests, you have addressed a letter to God’s People, in which you condemn clericalism as one of the causes of this evil and you have appealed to the baptized persons to help you resolve the problem. We want to respond to your appeal.

Read more: Letter to Pope Francis - Demand for a Council of God's People

Indian Christian Women’s Movement 1st National Convention ‘Women Take Wing’

PRESS RELEASE 13th August, 2018

About 100 women including nuns and ordained women from churches all over India strongly condemned the weak institutional response of the church to gender violence faced by women in the Church.

The women were attending the first National Convention of the Indian Christian Women’s Movement (ICWM) at Jnanadeepa Vidyapeeth, Pune, on the theme ‘Women take Wing’.

In her keynote address, Prof. Vibhuti Patel, Advanced Center for Women’s Studies, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, traced the history of Indian women’s movement and the importance and relevance of ICWM in this larger context.

The delegates, cutting across age, region and Christian denomination expssed dissatisfaction at the lack of voice, role and decision making for women in Church structures, and declared their determination to struggle for justice equality, dignity and rights for women, children, Dalits, Tribals, Transgender people and LGBQIA.

They resolved to work together to enhance women’s participation, representation, decision making in the Church and related structures.

In the new normal of sexual violence and polarization in the country, and the abuse of women’s and children’s bodies to settle political and communal scores, the ICWM resolved to partner and work in solidarity with civil society groups and movements in the ongoing battle for justice for survivors and their families.

Noella D’Souza
Convenor, ICWM

Virginia Saldanha
Secretary, ICWM

 

Recent statements by Pope Francis and top Vatican officials support the need to bring more lay women to top leadership positions at the Roman Curia. However, Voices of Faith is concerned about the apparent difficulties and lack of transparency in regard to how those women are chosen and the process undertaken to appoint them. In an extensively quoted interview with Reuters on June 17th 2018, Pope Francis is reported saying, “I don't have any problem naming a woman as the head of a dicastery." At the same time, he talks about difficulties in finding the right candidates and convincing curial officials to accept women for leadership positions. The Prefect of the Dicastery of Laity, Family and Life, Cardinal Kevin Farrell, stated that the Vatican is "overloaded with clerics" and that "administrative functions within the church can be done by anybody" including laity.

Read more: Transparent policies and accountability needed if the Vatican is serious about bringing more women...

Today, Thursday 7th June We Are Church Ireland is launching a petition calling on Pope Francis to change Vatican theological language that is gravely insulting to LGBTQI people.

Words like 'objectively disordered ' and ' intrinsically evil' to describe any human being is wrong but for an institution like the Catholic Church to teach that these words are an expression of the mind of God to describe her image in LGBTQI persons is not alone scandalous but blasphemous.

The petition is being launched by Ursula Halligan of WAC Ireland, Senator David Norris and Pádraig Ó Tuama of the Corrymeela Community.

Find the petition on Change.org at:

https://www.change.org/p/info-dublindiocese-ie-pope-francis-change-church-lgbtqi-language?recruiter=16658031&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition

'We Are Church Ireland encourages every Catholic who continues to be enraged by this Vatican Un-Christian language to sign the petition demanding the withdrawal of this offensive language to describe our LGBTQI sisters and brothers' stated Brendan Butler.

Brendan Butler, We are Church spokesperson.
Mobile 086 4054984
7 June 2018

To all Catholic Women,

Catholic Women Speak and Voices of Faith have collaborated to write an open letter to Pope Francis appealing for greater participation of and dialogue with women in the worldwide Church. They have asked for our support of this effort to open a meaningful dialogue with women in the church so that women can have a more "decisive" presence in the universal Church. Please read the letter and, if you agree, you are invited to sign the letter and, in turn, circulate it to your networks.

​As you will see, the letter is supportive of Pope Francis and seeks to open up a dialogue. The creators of this website believe it is important to express our concerns about the language used to describe women, and this letter strives to do so gently - not to provoke a confrontation 

Here is the link to the website with the letter and the signature form: We are grateful in advance for your support.

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