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Francis, the comic strip                                                               by Pat Marrin | June 1, 2016
National Catholic Reporter
Used with permission

Catholic Women Preach goes Live

Today, All Saints Day, catholicwomenpreach.org went live with three faith filled, challenging and inspiring reflections for the Advent Season from Sister Jamie T. Phelps, O.P, Astrid Lobo Gajiwala, and Sister Barbara E. Reid, O.P.! And we're just getting started:   Kerry Robinson, Carolyn Woo, Nancy Pineda-Madrid, Marie Adele Dennis, Sr. Christine Schenk and Sr. Cathy Hilkert are coming up soon!

Be sure to visit Catholic Women Preach today to view both the videos and texts of these phenomenal women preachers!

Catholic Women Preach is an innovative project designed to address some of the most pressing challenges facing the Church today by responding to Pope Francis’ call for broader and more active engagement of the baptized in the preaching mission of the Church. This project is a deeply faithful, hopeful and joyful initiative intended to build up the Church.

CWP offers the theologically informed perspectives of Catholic women:

  • to serve as an inspirational, theologically based resource for ordained priests, deacons, catechists, and all involved in the ministry of the word in the Catholic Church
  •  to encourage Catholics, especially younger adult Catholics, with messages of hope that renew faith, strengthen us and encourage active engagement in the life of the Church for our work in the world
  • to provide a global platform for women’s voices and faith reflections so that the fullness of our Catholics giftedness can be accessed by all Catholics.


On women clergy, Pope Francis fears ‘disease’ of clericalism

John L. Allen Jr. | November 1, 2016

On the way back from Sweden, Pope Francis appeared to suggest that the Church's ban on women priests is "forever." What that doesn't address is where he may come down on women deacons, which seems harder to handicap -- but the right place to start is his aversion to clericalism.

I don’t know how to handicap where the pope will come down on the issue, but I do know where to begin in trying to describe how he’s likely to approach it: What he sees as the “disease” of clericalism, and the danger of clericalism setting the tone for discussions of women in the Church.

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Call To Action Statement: Catholics are Ready for Women Priests

CTA | November 2, 2016

It is clear that Catholics across the United States support women priests. At the time of Pope Francis’ election, the Pew Research Center showed that six out of ten Catholics think the Pope should open ordination to women. Today, however, Pope Francis made it clear that he does not foresee women’s equality in the church.

“For a Pope who proclaims the need for mercy, Pope Francis is not being merciful to Catholic women,” said David Saavedra, Interim Co-Director of Call To Action. “The ban against ordination keeps women from having meaningful representation at the Vatican or in Catholic decision-making bodies across the globe. As a result, policy decisions are being made about women’s lives without any women at the table where those decisions are made.”

This was not always the case. History shows that women were ordained as deacons, priests, and bishops in the early centuries of the church.

“We are ready for women priests to be restored in the church,” noted Mr. Saavedra, “and are supporting women who are moving ahead with ministry or ordination without Vatican approval.  Catholics are working in movements like Call To Action to ensure that one day women and men will be able to equally minister alongside one another. This is what Jesus modeled and we hope the same for our church.”


Sara Butler, MSBT / Robert J. Egan, SJ Debate on the Ordination of Women

Women Priests -- Answering the Call


See preface from the book by Catherine Cavanagh -- click here

Editor's note:  The author has given permission to download for free the complete 48 page booklet and read on your computer or e-reader

Click here for pdf format of Women Priests -- Following the Call

My Journey From Silence to Solidarity

This book available for free as a pdf file downloaded here.


On May 12, 2016 Pope Francis  announced that he will create a commission to study the possibility of restoring the tradition of ordaining women deacons in the Catholic Church.

Follow this special section to stay up to date and get insights and commentary on developments from many news sources.

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Pope Francis confirms finality of ban on ordaining women priests -- sort of

Joshua J. McElwee  |  Nov. 1, 2016

ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT FROM SWEDEN Pope Francis has said he thinks the Roman Catholic church's ban on priestly ordination for women will continue forever, saying his predecessor Pope John Paul II's declaration on the matter "goes in that direction."

Francis expressed his thoughts on the subject in response to a question Tuesday from a journalist aboard the papal flight back to Rome after a two-day visit to Sweden.

Read More...plus comments

Mary of Magdala Inclusive Catholic Community

Jane Kryzanowski | November 1, 2016

Recently the Regina house church reviewed developments in our community over the past year which included serious consideration of a name.  After much prayer and discernment, the name Mary of Magdala Inclusive Catholic Community was chosen. 

As a community, we honour Mary as:

  • one who received the healing touch of Jesus,
  • a faithful follower and supporter of his ministry,
  • a person loyal to Jesus even in his darkest hours of suffering and death,
  • a tomb watcher to whom the mystery of the resurrection was revealed,
  • the apostle to the apostles proclaiming Jesus risen,
  • a dearly beloved disciple, and
  • a leader in the early church.
She also bears the burden of being greatly misunderstood throughout much of church history and by many today.

We ask her inspiration and guidance as we journey in faithfulness to our call to proclaim by our words and actions the Good News Jesus preached and which she witnessed, the loving tenderness of God.  We also commit to telling herstory as we claim our story.

Rejoice with us in this development of our community!

Jane Kryzanowski, RCWP
Email:  photina61@gmail.com


Patriarchy Will Not Have the Last Word -- Press Release by Women's Ordination Conference

For Immediate Release: 1 November 2016

Contact:  Kate McElwee +1 607.725.1364

On the papal plane from Sweden to Rome, Pope Francis was asked by a journalist:

“Is it realistic to think that there might be women priests in the next few decades?” 

“On the Ordination of women in the Catholic church, the last word is clear,” Francis responded, before mentioning John Paul’s 1994 apostolic letter banning the practice, Ordinatio Sacerdotalis. “It was given by St. John Paul II and this remains.”

“But really forever? Never?”

“If we read carefully the declaration made by St. John Paul II it goes in that direction.”

The Women’s Ordination Conference (WOC) is profoundly disappointed with Pope Francis’s reliance on his predecessors’ documents regarding the possibility of priestly ordination for women.

Several times Pope Francis has been asked by journalists aboard the papal plane regarding women’s priestly ordination.  The reason this question cannot be suppressed is because the exclusion of women defies the example of Jesus, who welcomed men and women equally. Ordinatio Sacerdotalis is an outdated, fallible and painful document created by his predecessors to diminish the leadership and vocations of women.

Instead of citing John Paul II, Pope Francis might have cited the Vatican’s own Pontifical Biblical Commission that concluded in 1976 that there is no valid scriptural or theological reason for denying ordination to women, or looked to archeology and historical documents that show women’s leadership in the early church. He could have looked to Jesus who welcomed women as his equal. Or he could look to the people of God who overwhelmingly support the ordination of women.

The Church cannot be afraid to examine customs when they no longer communicate or resonate with the Gospel. A Church that is not open to the gifts of half of its membership is unsustainable and out-of-touch with the needs of its people. “Never changing” is not only historically inaccurate but simply not an option when it comes to women’s equality.

The Women’s Ordination Conference and the majority of U.S. Catholics we represent do not accept “never ever” as an option. We will continue to work for the full equality of women in the Roman Catholic Church knowing that unjust laws are indefensible with a God that does not discriminate. Patriarchy will not have the last word.


'I want to see women priests in the Catholic Church', Lutheran Archbishop tells Pope Francis

Ilgin Karlidag | Oct 28, 2016

Pope Francis still has a lot of work to do on a range of moral issues despite encouraging comments from the Catholic Church head, leaders of Sweden's Lutherans say ahead of his visit to the country.

"It is clear that he has said and done things that have ignited much hope among many Catholics and even many people outside the Catholic Church," Sweden's first female Lutheran Archbishop, Antje Jackelén, told AFP.

Stockholm Bishop Eva Brunne hailed the Argentine pontiff as "a breath of fresh air". But the openly lesbian bishop added: "He has a lot to work on when it comes to gender issues, for example."

Francis kicks off a two-day visit to Sweden on Monday to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation – a highly symbolic trip, given that Martin Luther's dissenting movement launched centuries of bitter and often bloody divisions in Europe.

Sweden's branch of the Lutheran Church is amongst the most liberal in Christendom, and the pope's visit highlights deep splits between the Vatican and this gay-friendly constitutional monarchy, where same-sex marriage is allowed even for priests.

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How to Be a Catholic and a Feminist

Jean E. Barker | Sep 28, 2016

Full of questions about her lifelong Catholic faith, journalist-turned-public-interest-lobbyist Celia Viggo Wexler decided to interview other women who have remained in the Church despite their disagreements with its official teachings. Her new book, Catholic Women Confront Their Church: Stories of Hurt and Hope (Rowman & Littlefield, Sept.), features nine activists, theologians, and other professional women who are engaging with the institutional church in multiple ways.

Conflicted about the Church’s refusal to respond to the concerns of Catholic women, and uncomfortable with the conservative Catholicism practiced in her parish, “I had come to a fork in the road in my own life,” Wexler told PW. “I did not know whether I could continue to be a practicing Catholic and a feminist.”

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Francis, the comic strip                                                                                                           Francis Comic Strip Archive
by Pat Marrin | October 20, 2016
National Catholic Reporter
Used with permission

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