Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture, said that the opening of the diaconate for women is a possibility in a long Feb. 24 interview with the German Catholic sitekatholisch.de."Women deacons would be a possibility in my eyes, but it would naturally have to be discussed first as the historic tradition is very complex," he said. The present continuous fixation on women's ordination was "clerical," he added.
Bridget Mary's Response: Cardinal Ravasi seems to be making the connection between gender equality in decision making and in presiding at the altar with diaconate ordination. The full equality of women in all areas of the church includes a renewed priestly ministry in a non-clerical, inclusive, egalitarian community of faith. This is the vision of the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests. www.arcwp.org "Ravasi recalled that when he first set up his women's only permanent consultation group two years ago, Pope Francis immediately visited the dicastery and listened to Ravasi's plans to give women a consultative role. Francis told him of several bishops who, after listening to their advisory councils in which only men were represented, had created women's councils and found their feedback better and more substantial. In other words, good advice is sometimes feminine," Ravasi said. "In the Vatican that is a new discovery." Bridget Mary's Response: As my Irish mother often said, "words are cheap, it is actions that count"! While women's voices are being heard now by Pope Francis and bishops at the Vatican, are they being heeded? Where are the changes in teachings that impact world poverty and the destruction of the planet such as the ban on artificial birth control? A pro-life church must be pro-women and pro-responsible family planning by all effective means!