Thursday, April 5, 2018

Obstacles and points of support for the promotion of women in the Latin American reality. Reflections on participation in the PCAL: Ana Maria Bidegain

We thank Ana Maria, sister, supportive friend, for granting us the publication of her contribution and reflections, "made with love to provoke reflection and if possible action and conversion".  

It is not my intention to repeat what I said in the Plenary Assembly of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, days ago. (I attach the text) I do not intend to summarize the meeting either, but I will make the effort to point out some points that allow us to continue the reflection.

Opening the discussion on women in the building of society and the church in Latin America was of the Pope, both in what refers to the theme, and the fact that we were invited a dozen Latin American women, with a great diversity of experiences and formation, so that we could dialogue with the cardinals and archbishops that make up the Plenary Assembly of the PCAL. (I attach the list)

How to understand this concern? I believe that it is part of the effort that has been made to return to the essential aspects of the Second Vatican Council, which had remained, let us say, laggards and which, at the same time, obliges us to return to the sources, the Gospel and the beginning of the first Christian communities. .

I believe that, for that reason, it is also part of an effort because we rethink realities and ways of living, which we have included in our religious experience, at some historical moment, but given its long duration we consider as immovable, as absolutes that can not be changed because they have always been like that and they are issues and problems that are petrified. They are the essential themes of his Pontificate that put many things in question and brings us a seemingly new way, but that in the end is a way to return the Gospel to the fundamentals of our Christianity

In the case of women, which I believe is not the "essentialized" woman, but the woman in her relationship with the man or better, the women, in their diversity, who are half of humanity, in their relationship with the other half. In this sense, he calls us to take up Jesus' proposal, which, breaking with the cultural customs of his time, treats women in an egalitarian, friendly, respectful way, never demeaning them, much less disabling them.

Pope Francis proposed, in the audience we had to present our conclusions, that to think theologically, what he called "the mystery of the woman" we must go back to Genesis not only to affirm that man and woman are God's image and likeness but to understand that "stupor, ecstasy, stupefaction, amazement that Adam feels when he meets EVA and discovers her as his equal, flesh of his flesh, bone of his bones. Not because it came from the rib but because of the stupor of being with its other half and feeling that both make up humanity. A call to continue deepening in the theological perspective that was opened since several pontificates and that in the meeting we sought to resume and look for ways to continue deepening it.

The meeting began with two conferences of historical importance, that of Guzman Carriquiri   and mine that I attach. Two others theological cut.

Cardinal Robles Ortega, Archbishop of Guadalajara in his conference, took up the reflections of John Paul II on the theology of the body and on woman and the calls of Pope Francis in their various catechesis and exhortations where both emphasize the rupture, the alteration of that original relationship between man and woman, "the relational uniduality" of the human being created man and woman in his image and likeness that build an identity and a difference between male and female. However, constitutive complementarity and reciprocity are "wounded and disfigured" despite the recognition of the enormous strength and feminine presence in the present and in the past in Latin American Evangelization.

Central in the meeting was the presentation of Cardinal Marc Ouellet on the gift, reciprocity and fertility, as three concepts that express the essence of Love and Trinitarian Communion. the opening in the homily of the First Mass the Cardinal proposes a real conversion effort that showed the seriousness with which the theme wants to be addressed. As also the request of forgiveness to women for so many faults and abuses committed against them.

Pope Francis emphasized that we can not think about the problems of women from the functionality that must be fulfilled, but from their humanity as such. Referencing thinking about the problem historically and interdisciplinarily.

In that sense it was part of my contribution to show that societies and the Christian church had made the definition of women's roles not because they were based on the teachings, message, model and proposals of Jesus, but because of the functionality, which fulfill the woman in a specific historical moment, at the beginning of modernity. That is, to direct all its energy to motherhood, and it is not by chance that it was only in the 16th century that marriage was canonically established at the Council of Trent.

Regrettably, although the Christian kerygma was a bearer of dignity for the woman, for being also a daughter of God, made in her image and likeness, and Jesus gave the example of a respectful, close and egalitarian treatment, confronting the Jewish, Greek and Roman cultures. of his time - with the passage of time, this very central perspective of the message of Jesus, had practically been forgotten. The Western Christian, religious and secular authorities established a feminine pattern, oriented by the function that women could fulfill in society to establish stable structures, NOT by the teachings contributed by Jesus. That is why they closely linked or rather defined the model of women based on the ideas they had about sexuality at that time and how it should be regulated according to the circumstances and historical needs. Regulating sexuality, especially regarding procreation, whether to reduce or increase population, according to the needs of the time, became the object of political and religious concern, and has been recurrent throughout history to our days. What could have been necessary at the time does not mean that it continues to be so today, and it is necessary to reflect on it and propose the changes that are pertinent to help restore that dialogue that was pointed out in the Assembly asmystery of inequity .

For the specific Latin American case, the reflection on women (because we are many and diverse) Pope Francis proposes to be done from the perspective of miscegenation, and as an essential part of the people. I understand it as the proposal to rethink Latin American history also from the prominence of women and recovering what is proper and essential to our Latin American identity, our great cultural miscegenation, recovering and recognizing our cultural matrix where it roots our Catholicism, giving it a peculiarity our religious experience.

In the panels formed by a guest speaker and by a cardinal or archbishop, specific and challenging aspects were deepened. I'm just going to comment on some ideas that I remember, especially about what women have said. I hope that soon the PCAL draw the conclusions and publish the contributions.

The Sociologist María Lía Zervino, Servant, Secretary General of the World Union of Catholic Women's Organizations showed that approximately one million women in Latin America are pastoral agents committed to religious education and catechesis. Women characterized by their faith, courage and sensitivity, united to time, with greater inner unity and special attributes to unite time and eternity and therefore capable of showing and transmitting Trinitarian Love. Although the local churches give training to these women according to their possibilities today it would be possible through technology to offer a university-level training cycle for primary school teachers, a catechetical educational portal and a virtual formation for the leadership of Christian women, intensifying the formation of women who fulfill an essential role in evangelization. María Lía, taking up various challenges proposed by Pope Francis, proposes positions in the church that could be occupied by women, not as vases or for lust for power, but because they are suitable and have a sense of service both in diocesan organizations and in the Holy Headquarters. He concluded by taking up the Holy Father's request in 2013 to elaborate a profound theology on women in order to reflect on their role within the Church, if it were not necessary to include a Synod on women in the Church among the conclusions of the Plenary.

A moving, full of light and wisdom was the presentation of Sr. Sr. Mercedes L. Casas, Daughter of the Holy Spirit, president of CLAR. He spoke from the solidarity of the consecrated feminine life with the poor and the care of the Common House. They are there, without making noise but not in silence, in the spaces where many times the men of the state or of the church do not dare or They can not arrive, where the most needy receive consolation and seek harmony in each place. Female religious life has been invisible in the history of the church and in history, sociology or any analysis of Latin America. However, their presence is not only numerical, they are approximately three times more than the regular and secular clergy gathered, but their presence has been significant in many fields, enabling modernization and almost the only education for women until well into the twentieth century, healing the sick and wounded from so many wars and conflicts, assisting migrants, refugees and displaced persons, women and children subjected to trafficking, prostitution, prisoners and prisoners in prisons, the most vulnerable and forgotten communities of indigenous and Afro-descendant peoples, HIV / AIDS patients, abandoned women and families of victims of femicide and violation of all types of Human Rights, in the decolonization of consciences Today, according to the hard data provided by independent surveys, they are the most beloved and valued face, above other religious agents and the laity as pointed out by Dr. María Luisa Aspe.

Regarding the theme of women in the family pillar and care for life, Cardinal Rubén Salazar, archbishop of Bogotá and current president of CELAM, expressed his concern about the confusion and misrepresentations on the subject, the inconsistencies in the speeches in defense of life, which lead to political alliances at any cost.

The richness of the panels was very significant, and topics such as the need to strengthen the presence of women in political life, the challenges to which they are constrained in the world of work, and the violence faced in both the domestic space, where the greatest number of feminicides occur, as in the social space where women occupy the leadership of many social movements. Dr. Susana Nuin showed with strong data the employment situation of women in Latin America and the Caribbean. Women have always worked but their work has been unrecognized and now that they have been included in the labor market, the compensation is less than 50% paid to men. Apart from the abuses related to unjust pay, women must often suffer the violence and sexual abuse of their bosses. The work hidden and blessed in the church's own structures was also pointed out, as well as the position of Pope Francis in reference to this type of treatment that requires a change of attitude and appreciation of the work of women in the church.

The panel on women pillar in the building of the church was very challenging in particular for the clear proposals made by Mrs. Alejandra Keen von Wuthenau, on women in church government, in positions of responsibility. He showed that despite speeches and conceptual clarity, since several pontificates and since the Second Vatican Council, little has been done to change this situation that contrasts radically with what happens in the civil sphere, despite all the difficulties. He proposed to the present bishops to break with inertia by incorporating women in diocesan government and diocesan institutions to change the paradigm by training and training women who can collaborate with them and include them in their tasks.

As I told you, it is not my task to summarize a rich meeting of contents but to share some points. But above all I came with a concern that I want to share with you and with that I conclude.

As a laity and part of the people of God, I believe that it is no longer time to wait for what the hierarchy can or can not propose. We have a relative autonomy and we must exercise it. I believe that without ignoring the role of each one in the church, we also have a right or perhaps a duty to contribute on those issues in which we can be competent and before which the church feels challenged, particularly those that We are in the Academy. Investigate reflect, discuss those problems that Pope Francis asks us for a conversion and an approach to live more in accordance with the Gospel. From the care of the common home to the relations between men and women, going through the defense of human rights, the rights of migrants and refugees,

In that sense, and if the proposal of a synod on women prospers, we should be preparing subsidies that can feed the discussions and make our opinions known and gradually favor a paradigm shift in terms of relationships and especially to a new dialogue between men and women from interdisciplinary proposals. As on this issue, the debate is open there are many others to whom Pope Francis calls us and there is much we can contribute and do to demonstrate our consonance with his proposals and model of being a church. In most of these topics we are the lay specialists, by our training but also work and experience and those of us who must contribute to the debate of these issues open to debate within the Church.

Another concern I have is the existence of a very organized opposition to the Papacy, and with many resources, which day by day seek to undermine their proposals and leadership. I think that in this sense those of us who appreciate their orientations, should encourage an opposite movement. To begin with, we must break the dispersion that we have lived in the last decades in grassroots movements and create a synergy of support, a network of networks (Amerindia Asset, MIIC, Base Communities Etc) to support the proposals of Pope Francis promoting debates, forums, dissemination in social networks of topics that for us are vital and that also not only concern the Catholic faithful but all humanity. Given the chaotic situation that we live in terms of international leadership, the Pope's voice is increasingly lonely,

Warm greetings and that Easter has profoundly renewed your faith, hope and vocation of service.
Ana Maria

First of all I must thank this effort and challenge, proposed by the Holy Father to the Plenary Assembly of the CAL, and you for accepting it, to think and dialogue with us about the reality of Latin American women, to whom we have, in some way, The responsibility to represent in this forum. The recognition of women as a pillar in the building of the church and society is very significant.

Obstacles and points of support for the promotion of women in the Latin American reality.
                                                                                                                       Ana María Bidegain

To think about the obstacles and points of support for the promotion of women in the Latin American reality, on the one hand, I take as a beacon and guide, the word and the behavior of Jesus with women, and on the other, the perspective of women in our Latin American history.

The proposal of the message and life of Jesus, both in what refers to the dignity of women, and in the transparent, equitable, respectful and friendly treatment he had with the women of his time, is precisely what gives meaning to the faith of women today and the search to participate in the construction of society and the Church faithful to that message. As clearly explained by Francisco in his catechesis of April 2015 [1]   and John Paul II, in Mulieris Dignitatem."Christ was before his contemporaries the promoter of the true dignity of women and of the vocation corresponding to this dignity. In the teachings of Jesus, as well as in his way of behaving, nothing is found that reflects the usual discrimination of women, proper to time; On the contrary, his words and works always express the respect and honor due to the woman. [2]

A look from Latin American history from the perspective of women, not as a result of a mere academic effort but to face the task for which we are summoned; to elucidate that presence of the pillar woman, in the building of the Latin American Church and society. I reflect from our own historical experience, with our peculiarities and our way of appropriating the Christian message, as the bishops proposed in Puebla [3] and Pope Francis reminds us. "" The concrete Catholic ", which responds to the Incarnation of the Word, is constitutive of our Latin American reality". [4]  That way of living the religious experience is like an agglutinating agent of our cultural diversity and hybridity. It does not hide the differences, and gives us, together with the language, a common substrate, in which women are protagonists. A look that does not arise from an intellectual elucubración, but from a long historiographical work based on documentary sources but also in the reflection and participatory research work with many women and men interested in a history of evangelization, including the participation of women, throughout the region. It was made possible, on the other hand, by the continental character of our church, which has given me the opportunity to have a frame of reference and privileged work [5] .

We think about the past but from the questions and concerns that we have today and they demand us to seek to make the world a common home where men and women live with dignity and respect between ourselves and with nature. In Latin America in the last 50 years, women have achieved better living conditions and exercised political and civil rights thanks to the PACIFIC effort carried out by many sectors, but in particular by the determination and determination of the women themselves.

However, day after day we find abuses and assaults on the dignity of women of all ages, social classes and races that make up our female universe. It is estimated that one in three Latin Americans suffer from violence that can be physical, psychological and / or sexual. Each day, an average of two women are murdered in Latin America and the Caribbean, that is, some 60,000 women a year, because they are women, [6]and not infrequently, by their own husbands and sentimental partners. Drama that Pope Francis considers a "plague" that affects our continent: the numerous cases of feminicide and there are many situations of silenced violence ". It asks to fight against this source of suffering, seeking to promote legislation and a culture of repudiation of all forms of violence. [7]

The female labor exploitation, together with a loss of 30% of their salary rights for equal work with respect to the male, is another of the abuses suffered by women and that Francisco considers " a scandal ". [8] Almost half of Latin American women over 15 do not have their own income, while only one in five men is in that situation. In addition, women heads of household have less money income than men, both in poor households and those with higher incomes. [9]

What have been and are the points of support and obstacles for the promotion of women in Latin American society? What can history tell us look from the perspective of women today?
I will reflect on five "moments" of our Latin American history.

  • The women protagonists of the mestizo culture and popular religiosity.
Like Puebla [10]it announces, our catholic and Latin American specificity, is in the ethnic and cultural symbiosis between the conquering world and that of the populations of the territory that we now call Latin America. In order to survive, the Iberians had to learn from the indigenous tradition that gave him the millennial knowledge of nature. Native women, turned into wives thus against their will, concubines or enslaved, were the ones who mostly had to teach Europeans new food habits and hygienic recipes adapted to the climate, the use of elements of nature in domestic organization, use of medicinal plants to deal with tropical diseases. That original creativity persists in our uses and customs, in our culinary culture,[11]   Therefore, our miscegenation is not only biological, but also, above all, it is cultural. It was in this context, of complex and unequal exchanges, that our mestizo culture was molded, full of diversity, inequality and nuances. But it was in its interstices where the native culture managed to survive and at the same time where it took root in evangelization; as defined by the Puebla document, where the Word incarnated. [12]The indigenous men, many times looked for suicide and drink escape, but the women stood firm in the care of their bastard children drawing strength from the depths of their spirituality enriched by the Gospel message. This had come amid the incongruities of colonialism, but had brought the model of Mary who never abandoned her son despite the difficulties. Thinking about the Latin American past, since miscegenation places women as protagonists of history. The mother of Latin America Tonanzin / Guadalupe / is indigenous / mestizo and we are her mestizo, biological and cultural offspring. It is our cultural matrix, which today we must accept, understand, rescue, value to be able to affirm our own identity and our capacity to have a universal presence but also the one that allows us to understand the look and the specificity of our catholicity. It is in the domestic space where popular religiosity has its roots and is constantly renewed.

This miscegenation, however, was not just the product of the violence and domination of Amerindian women. In the first half of the sixteenth century an attempt was made to implant an Indian Church that, in dialogue with local cultures, would be able to transmit the Gospel. The fathers of the Latin American Church laid the foundations of an original Christianity. Very early on, the importance of the presence of the Hispanic woman was seen both in her role as wife and mother and as consecrated woman. In 1540 Zumárraga founded the first convent for women. The female convents, as Constanza Toquica (2002) says, following Michel de Certau, fulfilled a plurality of functions: religious, cultural, economic, social, educational, because their life was totally imbricated in colonial society.[13] But also, spaces of creativity of that spirituality transmitted in the homes of mothers to daughters. The convents with their lights and shadows were the only places where women, of all conditions, in the cities, could access a rudimentary education and for some it was the refuge where they could develop their intellectual capacity as is, among others, the famous case of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.
-Silenciar and invisibilize the presence of women in history has been one of the greatest obstacles to the promotion of women, because it is to say that they are so insignificant that they have contributed nothing to their families, society, or the church not even themselves.

  • Miscegenation, bastardism and misogyny.
The Iberians encountered a variety of customs in relation to relations between men and women, since polygamy was the norm in the villages with which they came into contact. At the beginning of the sixteenth century, consensual relations or those imposed by means of kidnapping or rape were dominant and gave rise to the mestizo society, as I said earlier. The missionaries, above all theologians and canonists, made many efforts to understand marriage in the different Amerindian communities and for the Spaniards themselves to adjust to the norms that should regulate relations between men and women. In fact, when the process of conquest began in the sixteenth century, the institution of marriage was relatively recent and in full discussion in Europe. Historians of medieval Christianity point out that it is only after the year one thousand that the documentation on matrimonial regulation began to be significant and basically for the noble class, because the people reproduced more freely. The effort to establish marriage in a legal and religious institution took many centuries, but the church placed mutual consent as central to marriage. Despite all efforts, the medieval Christian society was not strictly monogamous because the agreements on marriage little sheltered the other social classes and especially because the sexuality of the aristocracy was judged with a double morality. Although only one wife was allowed at a time, the husband was not denied - or rather the family group breaking the union when it suited him to seek a better match, that is why the marriage commitments sought to protect the material interests of the wife and her lineage. In fact, the word adopted in the sacrament, marriage, comes frommatris (mother) munium (care) , that is, the "care of the mother". As a counterpart is patrimony ( patermunium) since economic rights were recognized only to adult men. Thus, "marriage" gives the idea of ​​defense and protection of the mother, implying the obligation of man towards her and her offspring.

The licit masculine sexuality was not locked in the conjugal frame, it had to take care of his wife, but it did not obligate him at all to not use other women before, during or after his marriage, in his widowhood. The concubinage, and the exaltation of a bad behavior were seen as feats of virility. On the contrary, women sought jealously to guarantee virginity in the case of maidens and in married women fidelity and perseverance, or risk introducing other blood born among the legitimate heirs of the ancestral fortune; the same bastards that men of lineage happily scattered outside the house and among the servitors.

Gradually the rite of marriage that went from domestic and secular was established in the atrium and then in the church and at the same time a spirituality of conjugal union was developed. With the advent of modernity and the consolidation of the bourgeois world, their representations came to dominate the cultural environment, relations were regulated by contracts, the need was established for the nascent modern state, together with the Church, to control the relationship between the sexes depending on the need for adaptation to the emerging world. On the one hand, procreation given the need for arms for production and for war and on the other the regulation of the inheritance and protection of women. That is to say, Although theologians and canonists tried to purify the legal institutions that came mainly from Roman law and "Christianize" them, by strengthening the legal institution, not only benefits were established or women were protected, but also obstacles that will be evident later on. What once meant a benefit for the woman later became a burden, but being canonized and dogmatized is difficult to discuss and its situation in its historical moment. In the search to take care of it and protect it over the centuries it meant the establishment of structures that made it dependent, controlled and at the same time helped to strengthen the masculine and patriarchal primacy. By strengthening the legal institution, not only were benefits established or women protected, but also obstacles that will be evident later on. What once meant a benefit for the woman later became a burden, but being canonized and dogmatized is difficult to discuss and its situation in its historical moment. In the search to take care of it and protect it over the centuries it meant the establishment of structures that made it dependent, controlled and at the same time helped to strengthen the masculine and patriarchal primacy. By strengthening the legal institution, not only were benefits established or women protected, but also obstacles that will be evident later on. What once meant a benefit for the woman later became a burden, but being canonized and dogmatized is difficult to discuss and its situation in its historical moment. In the search to take care of it and protect it over the centuries it meant the establishment of structures that made it dependent, controlled and at the same time helped to strengthen the masculine and patriarchal primacy.
At the Council of Trent (1563) the canonical form of marriage was envisaged and its regulation was reinforced, it had to be celebrated before a parish priest and witnesses, the spouses had to give mutual consent and had to sign a register. Cohabitation outside marriage was prohibited, to avoid concubinage and illegitimate children, however, the rules do not always manage to change customs. Marriage arose then from the historical circumstances, and from the function that women and men had to fulfill in the emerging society, not from the follow-up of Christian proposals, even if they were given a Christian garb. Along the centuries,
Concerning sexuality, Protestants differed little from Catholics with respect to basic concepts. But also the birth of the so-called new science in the seventeenth century was a heavy burden for women and nature. It linked science and modern technologies, knowledge and economic productivity, understood not only as a creator of wealth but also as surpluses and benefits. At the same time, the image of nature as nurturing mother, living being to be considered inert, dead and manipulable matter was changed, which is in perfect consonance with the imperative to exploit the typical nature of capitalist economic growth. In Tempores partus masculus,Francisco Bacon (1561-1626) Chancellor of Francis I of England (1618-1621) promised to raise a blessed progeny of heroes and supermen who through science would come to dominate nature, society, in particular women and the world not -Western, where, like women, they had a maternal conception of nature. They considered that they needed a science and a philosophy that deserved to be called "masculine" that was distinguished by its virile power from its inefficient predecessors, imposing itself by its capacity to subject nature to the servitude of man and make it its slave. [14]  It was necessary to put an end to the millennial knowledge that many European women had of nature and prevent them from accessing scientific knowledge and confine them to the domestic space. The terrible "witch hunt" that was centered on women must be related above all to the birth of the "New Science" that was born together with the incipient capitalism in the XVI and above all XVII centuries, and after Westphalia (1648) and the secularization not only of political life, but of intellectual life, dominated by England and France.

The rigorist perspective, both in Protestant and Catholic Christianity, deepened. Sexuality was conceived essentially as a malignant energy that had to be repressed or simply oriented towards the reproduction of the species. The sexual moral passed from a peripheral and secondary position, such as the one he had in the Middle Ages with Albertus Magnus or Thomas Aquinas, to be practically the center of it. This polarization on sexual morality implied the rejection towards the periphery of political-social concerns. That is why, in addition, it has tended to identify sin almost exclusively with the sexual. But, the individualization of sin, centered on sexual life, which at least theoretically, became part of the intimate, of the private and had to be lived in the bosom of marriage, became the responsibility of the woman.

A clear dichotomy was established in the roles in society, but particularly in sexual life. Contradictorily, and in spite of considering the woman an inferior and incapable being, but that influences the man and the society by its progeny, it was destined to fulfill the divine mission of regenerating the corrupt society making of its home a space of honesty. "  [15]All women's personal energy should be concentrated on the construction and reproduction of intra-family relationships and not be oriented towards socio-political action or work other than domestic work and without pay. The private space, the domestic one, should be that of the women who did not need education, including those of the elite who were Spanish or Creole and who could do better than cover themselves and cover themselves; because according to Fray Luis, men are for the public and women for confinement, and just as it is for men to speak and come out, it is women to keep silent [16] .

When in Spain there was awareness of what it meant to integrate the "new" continent, to form an empire and the role that religion could fulfill, Felipe II, through the Junta Magna of 1568, prohibited miscegenation and any adaptation that was based to the Indian church. All works that spoke positively of the natives and their culture or that were written about the forms of their exploitation, or the ways in which the Hispanic culture was being imposed, were prohibited. The aim was to avoid miscegenation and cultural hybridity, with only European culture, in its Spanish and / or Portuguese versions, being valid. But above all the "purity of blood" was imposed. For this, the conquistadores were required to bring their wives from Spain and also to send Spanish women.

This reorientation of the Crown's policy had a huge impact on the nascent society. A new "racialized" and hierarchical social order was established that established estates, "the castes", rigidly separated by reason of race. But this process was gradual. It was throughout the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries that the new pattern in the forms of relationship between the sexes was imposed. At the same time, that sexual control was greater, the stratified, racial and social society was cemented. [17]

Class differences among Spaniards, settled in America, relatively disappeared and constituted a kind of nobility: "the republic of the Spaniards" that contrasted with members of the other castes such as mestizos, mulattos, indigenous and enslaved of African origin. This new order was characterized by establishing moral codes to order the relationship of Spanish and Creole males with each of the different categories of women, depending on whether they were Spanish, mestizo, native or enslaved. While relations with whites were oriented towards marriage, men could maintain consensual relations with the "castes", that is, mestizos, indigenous, slaves.

Following the pattern of what was happening in Europe, the Spanish male and the male of the creole elite, only married and formed a legitimate family with a woman of the same social status, but it was not disturbed if at the same time, sexual relations with women of another social and racial condition with whom it was not their intention to marry. On the contrary, white women were controlled because they had to keep the blood purity of their offspring and because they could not transmit social prestige to their partner, therefore, an unequal marriage meant a social loss for both. The extra-conjugal and consensual relationships were fostered by the existence of racial and social hierarchies that generated a contingent of women from other social strata, always available to men from dominant strata.

This situation, necessarily brought 1) a devaluation of the female condition, which was expressed in disregard for the honor of the legitimate wives, generating tensions and violence both within recognized families and clandestine where violence was even greater. 2) a very unequal style of relationship between men and women, in a society in which women were classified socially and legally as inferior in the social and racial scale both inside and outside of marriage. [18]
This male predominance generated a masculine identity centered on the conviction of his natural superiority. They were naturalized: the extramarital relations of the male, violence against women, and the abandonment of the legitimate family and above all that born of consensual relations.

This reality led to a pattern of Latin American masculinity very generalized, also placing women, as father and mother. This social functioning has generated a great recognition and rootedness to the mother, which is everything, but on the other hand it has generated a relative social acceptance of male irresponsibility, (it is believed that they can not take care of the children, take care of them and educate them) a true trivialization of paternity, which until now accompanies us, as stressed by the anthropologist Olga Lucía Ramírez. [19]

Regrettably, although the Christian kerygma was a bearer of dignity for the woman, for being also a daughter of God, made in her image and likeness, and Jesus gave the example of a respectful, close and egalitarian treatment, confronting the Jewish, Greek and Roman cultures. of his time - with the passage of time, this very central perspective of the message of Jesus, had practically been forgotten. The Western Christian, religious and secular authorities established a feminine pattern, oriented by the function that women could fulfill in society to establish stable structures, NOT by the teachings contributed by Jesus. That is why they closely linked or rather defined the model of women based on the ideas they had about sexuality at that time and how it should be regulated according to the circumstances and historical needs.

  • Education is the first link for the promotion of women.
The ideological turn that the Enlightenment signified and then the establishment of the National States of a liberal nature, did not allow a change in relation to the imaginary of what should be the role of women. Although the banner of their education was raised, it was meant to prepare them for a better exercise of their motherhood, but not for their personal and intellectual development or to occupy a space in the labor or political world. With the ideas of the Enlightenment and the arrival of Liberalism, education meant the foundation of Emilio's freedom and the subjection of Sofia in accordance with the Social Pact proposed by Rousseau. [twenty]  However, the open space for the education of women, especially the upper classes, led to a gap where lay women began to claim their right to education in the eighteenth century, but especially in the nineteenth, as before they had made the religious who managed to dedicate themselves to letters [21] . Since the end of the eighteenth century, lay women financed the establishment of schools for young ladies, such as the schools of the Compañía de María, in Mexico City, in Bogotá and in Córdoba, Argentina. [22]In the nineteenth century, normal and nursing schools were established, which fitted perfectly into the ideal of women they considered appropriate, in the second half of the nineteenth century the first public schools for girls were opened within the plans of liberal reforms. Some women of the elite, had achieved a careful education, and were exceptional as the historian, novelist and essayist, Soledad Acosta de Samper, but also geographers, naturalists and journalists. [23]  But there were also groups of women like that of Chilean Catholics [24], that fought because they were recognized the right to suffrage since the election of 1856, and liberal Mexicans who in 1870, in a feminist newspaper requested political participation and at the end of the century the governesses and teachers began to demand access to university studies.

In the nineteenth century, despite all the contradictions between the liberal and the Catholic world, a postulate was developed that shared the spiritual superiority of women, thanks to motherhood. The woman was essentialized and defined as the "Beautiful Sex" or the "Angel in the home". Domesticity and male responsibility as a fundamental provider were promoted. Ideal basically designed for women of the elite, "a lady does not work" and in opposition to the reality that it was the life of working-class women, mostly mestizos and undoubtedly indigenous and afro-descendants. [25]
The consideration of women as a separate and totally different being, although spiritually superior, continued to justify their marginalization of public space and therefore not worthy of the category of citizen. The marginalization of women of all public life was done in two ways: on the one hand, legally, considering it as a minor almost devoid of understanding, which must be under guardianship, and on the other, exalting it in a kind of sublimation that make extra family activities unworthy of her.

The nineteenth-century positivism that took hold in Latin America in the second half of the nineteenth century deepened misogyny and racism with "scientific" foundations. They argued that human differences were products of nature and not of social relationships and that only reason and science could explain these natural differences. They argued that women, like colored men, were inferior. So positivism was opposed to fundamental changes in the conception of human beings, their capabilities, their rights and their place in the universe. The individual was unable to act on the conditions imposed by nature, which is why biology should regulate the world. According to positivism, biologists and experts in natural sciences became judges of social problems,[26]

This patriarchy, based on biology, reminds us of the patriarchalism that Jesus faced when women were oppressed by their own bodily constitution. There is no talk that menstrual cycles make them impure, as in the Jewish tradition, but if weak and that their lighter brains would show their inferiority. [27] This proposal, scientifically argued, led men to a high degree to make their own the ideas of the natural inferiority of women.

At the same time, a differentiation of feminine and masculine roles was developed in relation to religiosity: The males did not follow the religious precepts but they wanted their wives (wives, daughters, sisters and mothers) if they followed them [28]Religiosity was an inescapable component of the feminine ideal, part of its biological destiny according to the positivists. "Religion is a women's thing." Masculinity was constructed in opposing keys, through an emphasis on the emancipation of religious ideas and the Church in a time that sought explanation of social phenomena in empirical data from the natural sciences. Women would be religious by nature and as a corollary, science should be opposed to religion and every scientist would necessarily be anti-religious and all religious would be anti-scientific. That explains the gigantic difficulties that women still have to be able to develop scientific careers, so we can achieve greater university training and better investigative performance. At least to show the difference,

This model of ideal femininity in the sense of the exaltation of the virtues that should be characteristic of women, modesty, resigned acceptance of reality as if it were divine will, are arguments that have served men a lot to maintain a position of privilege, and on the other hand, continued to demand that women accept with humility and resignation "their position" and leave men the conduct of earthly and celestial businesses.

This ideology created many difficulties for the full access of women to education, in general, and higher education in particular; obtaining civil and political rights, access to work and wealth. But also to other sectors marginalized by "biological reasons" like the indigenous and Afro-descendant. This explains the difficulties of these sectors in the twentieth century and that today in many proposals, which claim to be progressive, women are considered "minorities" forgetting that we are 50% of the population. In short, the implantation of positivism in the Ibero-American world, as the dominant ideology, was a great obstacle for the promotion of women, but it also hampered political evolution towards more democratic projects given the enormous racist burden of which it was a carrier. Contrary to what their intellectual leaders would have liked, this anti-feminist attack from the positivism, benefited the possibility of structuring an organizational expression of women in the religious space.

At the end of the 19th century, members of the elite, even if they were liberal, did not see with bad eyes that some women or ecclesiastical authorities wanted to invite European religious communities to settle throughout the continent, because these women knew how to take care of their health. , education and poverty. If for the church they would fulfill a missionary role, for society they would educate women and for the State they would solve a difficult front to attend to. In the states, that the confrontation Church-State was very strong and it was not possible to bring foreign congregations, Latin American congregations were founded. [29]The religious congregations also came to accompany the immigrants of European origin who settled in Brazil, in the countries of the Southern Cone, in Mexico and Venezuela at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century [30]

Many of the European congregations that installed their homes in Latin America were obviously socially and culturally conditioned by the ideologies and prejudices of their country of origin. They came to fulfill a civilizing role: "discipline" as Sol Serrano says, in the standards of their own culture to promote "development", modernization and above all the integration of this region of the world to the capitalist project. But they helped the development of a more plural and democratic society to the extent that they promoted education for women and women had more elements to claim their civil rights and citizens. Benefiting in particular the daughters of the elite and favoring the development of an incipient middle class.
  • From the defense of the Church, to the social and political promotion of women.
Despite the institutional power that the Catholic Church had enjoyed for centuries as a universal institution, as well as local spaces, in the 19th century, it found itself marginalized and persecuted by the establishment of secular states and the process of secularization that made it lose its impact social and cultural influence. In Germany, France, the Netherlands, Italy and Spain strong links of Catholic identity developed among the faithful, who from the social, political and cultural arena had as their goal the defense of the "interests of the Church"; at the same time that some of them, grouped in the conservative parties, also saw an opportunity to defend their own. [31] Through various encyclicals, several Pontiffs [32]They called the Catholics, males first and then also women to unite their in the defense of the interests of the Church in a broad organization under the direction of the bishops and forming a series of Unions and Leagues, which would allow the organization of the laity
The Pontiffs, early in the twentieth century, were aware of the enormous historical transformation of Western women who gradually began a difficult but peaceful path, to be recognized their dignity, their civil and political rights, so that their points of view, their jobs and their concerns were taken into account in the spaces where decisions were made that affected their lives, those of their children and their environments. Pius X had to face the situation when Catholic women began to organize in Europe [33]and if at first she rejected the possibility, in April of 1909 she accepted "that the woman has other duties outside the family circle" although she perceives it more as a duty than as a right, and recognized the founding of the Union of Italian Catholic Women . [3. 4]
Despite the hostile environment, in Latin America there was also a great effort by women to break down the wall of the exclusion of social, political life, university education and civil and political rights at the beginning of the 20th century. In the 1880s, they achieved the first university degrees and secondary schools for girls were opened to facilitate this access. Philanthropy and work in social works was another space that allowed the women of the late nineteenth century to have a presence in the public space and voices began to be heard, from different currents of thought and political orientation, claiming civil rights, of politicians, for women in the first decades of the twentieth century. [35]

Pius XI (1922-1939) fully trusted the need for an organized laity, and called both men and women through a mandate that they should receive from their bishops. He integrated them into what he called the hierarchical apostolate of the church, that is, they assumed a place in evangelization and pastoral care, an axis of the life of the Church. Under her pontificate, women's organizations achieved great development and women had the opportunity to play a new role in the church and in society. For its implementation from the Vatican, lay propagandists, priests or religious were sent, the development of international organizations and the creation of continental coordinations of Catholic Action associations were supported. Maybe, without considering the repercussions that it would have in other planes, women were asked to temporarily leave the traditional role of the wife in the home and the virgin consecrated in the religious community, to develop an active presence in the social and political arena. What clearly demonstrates that the role of women (and men) that the church was canonized in different ways over time, has nothing to do with the dogma that derives from the Gospel and the theological tradition, but rather It is always functional to the historical conjunctures of the Church (or society) of the time. For that reason, the proposal of Pope Francis is forceful when he says that we can not think "the mystery of women from its function" to develop an active presence in the social and political arena. What clearly demonstrates that the role of women (and men) that the church was canonized in different ways over time, has nothing to do with the dogma that derives from the Gospel and the theological tradition, but rather It is always functional to the historical conjunctures of the Church (or society) of the time. For that reason, the proposal of Pope Francis is forceful when he says that we can not think "the mystery of women from its function" to develop an active presence in the social and political arena. What clearly demonstrates that the role of women (and men) that the church was canonized in different ways over time, has nothing to do with the dogma that derives from the Gospel and the theological tradition, but rather It is always functional to the historical conjunctures of the Church (or society) of the time. For that reason, the proposal of Pope Francis is forceful when he says that we can not think "the mystery of women from its function" it is always functional to the historical conjunctures of the Church (or society) of the time. For that reason, the proposal of Pope Francis is forceful when he says that we can not think "the mystery of women from its function" it is always functional to the historical conjunctures of the Church (or society) of the time. For that reason, the proposal of Pope Francis is forceful when he says that we can not think "the mystery of women from its function"[36]

Although the inspiration and organization of CA in Latin America was due to the desire of some bishops, and the existence of organized groups of women, in general it was a suggested proposal from the papacy. The urgency of organization of "the ladies" was expressed by Pius XI to the different episcopates. He placed a renewed interest in the institution of religious marriage and in the importance of the family for the reproduction of the Catholic faith. The great sacrament of the colonial era had been baptism, now moved to the Eucharist and especially to marriage in particular, "mothers", became the point of support of the new effort [37]More recently with the gradual change of roles it is more frequent to find that the parents are the educators in the faith, which shows the changes that are naturally occurring. [38]

A series of local initiatives among Catholic women had developed since the 1920s. [39] In Argentina in 1932 [40] In Mexico there are other groups since before 1930 but it is officially organized in the country in 1931. The international support of the International Union of Catholic Women's Leagues allowed to develop what already existed, revitalizing it or for sow the idea of ​​the Feminine Catholic Action. Christine de Hemptinne, [41] first European propagandist of Catholic Action who visited the continent in 1932 and 1934. In 1932 she traveled invited by Cardinal Leme, [42] from Brazil and launched a nucleus of Catholic young men and women who organized the Brazilian Women's Catholic Action [43]In 1934 she was expressly sent by Pius XI to spread the proposal and to form the women's groups of Catholic Action in South America. Miss Hemptinne traveled to Rio de Janeiro, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, Santiago, Lima, Bogotá, Caracas. In each city, he taught Catholic Action courses [44]aimed at shaping the nucleus of Catholic Women's Action.

Pius XII, continued to support the development of the AC, and opened a new horizon for them, breaking with centuries of female domesticity. He often exhorted Catholics to assume their responsibilities in all areas, including politics [45] , although he recognizes that it is not a task that women have sought, but that they have been forced by circumstances [46] and in 1957 encouraged to take charge of the promotion of women "especially among those with greater economic and social difficulties [47]Words that led many women to undertake social work in that direction and that still play an enormous role today as is the case of the organization Manos Unidas de España that has its origin in the work of these women of the Spanish Catholic Action.
The leadership of the CA gave practical guidelines for the establishment of the coordinating boards, the role of the president, secretary, treasurer, etc. All this prepared women to establish organizations that despite the clerical nature of Catholic Action allowed them to act with relative autonomy and learn to organize and organize the bases of a social movement. The organization in small nuclei and the weekly use of study circles for the analysis of local, national and even international social, political and religious reality gradually created a society of ideas, preparing for democratic work and the defense of their ideas. [49] Thus thousands of Latin American women, young and adult, had through their incorporation into the local Catholic Action groups, their first sociability activity with social, cultural impact, analysis and knowledge of social reality and early forms of political participation although in many cases women were still excluded from political rights.

These general coordinates for the continent as a whole had their pillar in the base associations - parochial - that functioned as a redoubt of sacramental life and defense of its members before what was considered the siege of the non-Christian influences that modern life entailed. [fifty]Weekly meetings at the local level, regional and national meetings, international assemblies were creating an immense network of contacts and relationships that would form a certain conception of the politics of the country and the international world, but also of the nature, of the customs, of the interpersonal relationships, of life, creating a social movement of transnational dimensions essential for the Catholic restoration, whose fundamental agents were the organization of local base, publications and networking. As María Salas says, Catholic Action placed in the hands of women two very powerful weapons for their promotion: the formation, received through the study circles, and the action, through different apostolic positions that they exercised at the parish level, diocesan, national and international; both trained them in the exercise of planning, decision-making and execution of projects. Maybe not all took advantage of the opportunity in the same way, but many women who later have played important roles in society and in the Church began to form from adolescents in the heart of CA[51]

  • Female religious life and the reintegration of the Church into the State.
As a result of the economic crisis of 1930, the welfare state emerged in the following decades. It was a state with a strong impact on the economy and aimed at promoting many social advantages for the working class and peasants. However, in most cases, it lacked the human and material resources to carry it out. The church as an institution, and particularly the female religious congregations, had the solid experience and capacity to mobilize their people to address problems related to poverty, education and health. There was a real symbiosis between church and state. The State gave the institutions of the church, particularly female congregations, the facilities and economic means to carry out the necessary social work. The sisters served the state and society with their own projects, doing their work within the convents. But they subordinated them to the mission of the church, or better, to the strategies of the church to affirm its presence in society before the state.

The emerging populist state needed to consolidate the middle class and develop a social mentality that avoided the strong confrontation between landowners and peasants and between employers and the working classes. This new political model did not reject Catholicism, as liberalism did before, but rather tried to incorporate it into the reformist programs of the State. In this way, Catholicism gave legitimacy to the new regime The reintegration of the State and Catholicism occurred officially and practically, in almost all Latin American countries and in the Spanish-speaking Caribbean. [52]This reintegration was largely possible through social work of congregations and religious orders through primary and secondary schools, hospitals and other social institutions. Although both participated in the effort congregations of men as women, when we look at the figures we see that works largely relied on the work of religious women who and numerically ran an absolute majority. [53]

Religious women14,00055,56769,073
Regular Clergy4,57811,38913,282
Secular clergy11,77612,99214,270
Total Men15,35423,38027,552

His mere numerical presence tells us that understanding the historical, political and religious significance of religious congregations in Latin America is crucial to understanding the history of Latin American Catholicism in the 20th century. 1) They played a leading role in developing a huge network of social work to meet the needs of all social classes and thus propelling the process of modernization.2) They facilitated the process of reintegration, which ended the conflicts between Church and State and therefore they strengthened political stability.3) Mitigated class confrontations, strengthening the middle classes and facilitating the incorporation into the labor system of the population educated by them. 4) They helped to re-Catholicize Latin American societies.

Thanks to this reintegration and expansion of the works, after the Second World War, the Catholic Church had a lot of recognition in Latin America. However, the bishops were aware of the difficulties, among which the lack of priests stood out. That is why some of them proposed that religious women could be in charge of some parishes. This initiative was well received by some congregations that accepted the challenge of taking care of the parishes. [54]

Pius XII, aware of the work carried out by the religious despite little professional training the limited theological training that was provided, in 1952, authorized them to preferentially form Catholic universities and Catholic professional schools but if the circumstances demanded they were also able to attend secular or public universities. Although not all of them went to the universities, some of them achieved a high level of education in Social Sciences as well as in other Sciences and Theology, including the PhD level in European universities. Gradually, some of them participated in the ecumenical approach, and welcomed the biblical and liturgical movements in the late 1950s. [55]  In this way, these women were well prepared to receive and propose new changes in the next two decades during the Council and the immediate post Council.
The reflection on these five aspects of the history of the life of women in society and the church in Latin America allow us to draw some brief conclusions that will surely be enriched by the debate that follows and the discussions we will have in the coming days.
  1. To ignore the feminine contributions, to make them invisible, has been a great obstacle for the promotion of both lay and religious women. For this reason, rewriting the history of evangelization, also counting on the contribution of women, would not only allow us to have a more authentic and truthful account of evangelization, but it would help us to understand ourselves better as humanity, value our contributions and understand our difficulties and to foster a deeper dialogue about our identities and differences (male and female) that allow us to rediscover ourselves as humanity and to better accept the message of Jesus.
  2. Machismo, converted into the essence of masculine identity, distorted human relationships and corrupted the masculine capacity to develop parental relationships. When a macho culture is generated, any initiative that questions this masculine predominance is felt as an attack because it questions that corrupted masculine identity. Thus, machismo is the root of all forms of violence against women, because to begin with it creates in it, insecurity, dependence, inability to react by itself, submission. Redefining masculinity is essential so that the dialogue of equals between men and women, made both in the image of God, can be restored. Of course the masculine and feminine identities of the consecrated ones also
  3. The experience of Maria, who never abandoned her son despite the difficulties, model of resilience, strength and decision has been a point of support for women we have suffered century after century, abandonment, loneliness and the ravages of war and we have not been afraid to go out to pick up the wounded, look for thousands of disappeared, bury our dead and ask for justice and reconciliation. On the contrary, a deviation from the Marial cult or better a sexist exploitation of the Virgin Mary has been an obstacle to the promotion of women.
  4. The relationships between men and women still have many remnants of the past and of a macho culture that today needs to be revised from the perspective of the Good News that Jesus brought us and of the knowledge we have today of sexuality and its importance for the construction of identities promoting a new ethic of those relationships.
  5. The one that prioritizes pragmatism in social organicity, to define the relations between men and women, in the so-called Christian nations, leaving aside the message of Jesus, has generated centuries of subjection of women legitimized with a misogenic ideology, based many times in religious texts taken out of context. Although some structures sought to protect women and respect their dignity, they could have been useful in the sixteenth century, maintain structures arising from historical conditions and the role that men and women were required to fulfill at a historical moment, in a dogmatic way, is an obstacle to the promotion of women and a true encounter with men today. It is necessary to rethink new forms of dialogue between men and women according to the Gospel lived in our current circumstances. The effort of a theology and biblical reflection that considers / includes the perspective of women, (of course also of men) and the contributions of social and human sciences in that same line, is a support for the promotion of women in the measure that helps to create a culture of respect, strengthening the profound dialogue between men and women
  6. Education, the recognition of civil and political rights and participation in conditions of equality and respect for men, have been fundamental points of support for the realization of women in social and ecclesial construction.
  7. The incorporation of women into the Catholic Action project to integrate them into the apostolic tasks at the parish, local, diocesan, national and international levels gave a very important space for women within the church, but also to prepare them for their action in social and political life. Having underestimated that presence did not favor the Church, nor the preparation and organization of women on the social visa. This motivated women in the 80s and 90s to look for new organizations and new work spaces.

See also
[4]   Bergoglio, Jorge Mario Prologue in Carriquiry Lecour, Guzmán. The bicentennial of the independence of Latin American countries: Yesterday and today (Pocket No. 87) . Ediciones Encuentro, 2012. Kindle edition.
[5]In addition to my personal experience, having been born and been schooled in Uruguay, I have lived in Colombia and now among the Latino community in the United States; I was trained in the university movements of the youth of Catholic action, where I found and nourished myself with the knowledge of intellectuals gathered in the environment of the Eve Magazine, and pastors who helped me deepen my experience of faith as a woman, in the particular context of Our Great Homeland. I was born the first sketches of the Theology of Liberation. I trained at the Catholic University of Leuven, I worked with CEHILA, I did a long research and reflection work with nuns from all over the continent in the framework of CLAR and on several occasions I collaborated with CELAM, including with the Council for the laity in the preparation of the Synod of Laity of 1987.

[10] PUEBLA Document Conclusive. III Conference of the Latin American Episcopate (5.6)
[11] Zapata Olivella Manuel. The Colombian man , 1974, Bogotá, Canal Ramírez
[12] Conclusive Document of Puebla Chapter 1
[13] Tochica Constance In the absence of gold: lineage, credit and salvation. A story of the Royal Convent of Santa Clara de Santafé de Bogotá. Seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. (2008) Bogotá, Univ.Nacional de Colombia.
[14] Fox Keller Evelyne. The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology and the Scientific Revolution , 1980, New York, Harper & Row / Merchant Carolyne, Reflection on Gender and Science, 1985, New Haven, Yale University Press.
[15]    DE LEÓN FRAY LUIS The perfect married woman in the Library of Spanish Authors Writers of the 16th century Vol 2 - Works of Fray Luis de León.   Cap II page 215 Google Book Collection from Harvard University-College
[16] Idem.
[17] See my article "Sexuality, State and Religion: The controls of sexuality and the imposition of monogamous marriage in the Spanish-American colonial world". REVER Revista de Estudos da Religião No 3/2005 / pp40-62. REVER Revista de Estudos da Religião No 3/2005 / pp40-62.

[18]   Fuller Osores Norma, Masculinidades: changes and permanences. Men from Cuzco, Iquitos and Lima. 2002 Lima Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, Editorial Fund
[19] Ramirez R. Olga Lucia "Paradoxes in the life of women and challenges for 21st century feminism" Conference in the Union of Citizens of Colombia.17 d November, 2012 Text facilitated by the author founding member of the Coorporación Vamos woman and the Peaceful Route of women
[20] MARIA ÁNGELES CANTERO ROSALES "From Perfecta married to" Ángel del Hogar "or the construction of the female archetype in the XIX". This study includes the project of Excellence of the Junta de Andalucía: Andalusian daily life through historical-linguistic and dialectal documents, University of Granada. Published in Digital Tones : Electronic Journal of Philological Studies , 14 (2007).
[21]   Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz in the seventeenth century, but also the Chilean Úrsula Suarez y Escobar (1666-1749), or the Colombians Francisca Josefa Castillo y Guevara (1672-1742) and Jerónima Nava y Saavedra (1669-1727) ) : many others. See ROBLEDO ANGELA INÉS Jerónima Nava y Saavedra (1669-1727): Autobiography of a venerable nun A. Robledo, transcriber and editor. Cali: University of the Valley, (1994) IBSEN KRISTINE Women's Spiritual autobiography in colonial Spanish America University Press of Florida, (1999) HERNÁNDEZ HINOJOSA VICTORIA Ursula Suárez: An expression of the marginal Indian Baroque  Thesis Department of Literature University of Chile. (2008)
[22]   The project of Juana de Lestonac had already taken root in Spain when the nuns committed to collaborate in the missionary enterprise of America. The convent-school of Cap. France, (today city of Cape Haitian, CapeHaitien) founded by the house of Périgeux in 1733, was developing a fruitful catechetical-scholastic work among the Creole and black population, when the House of Tudela established in 1754 the second convent-school of the Company of Mary in America, this time in Mexico P.FOX   The pedagogical revolution . cited in "Historical Memory of Religious Life in Mexico." P.6 Summary made by Mexican religious within the CLAR project under the direction of AM BIDEGAIN Historical  Memory of Religious Life in Latin America.. CEP Lima2003, Volume1
[23] Acosta de Samper Soledad Woman in Modern society , published in Hnos Granier, in Paris, in 1895 Part VI, 385 It can be consulted in Google Books
[24] Maza Valenzuela Erika Liberals, Radicals, and Women's Citizenship In Chile, 1872-1930 (1997) Kellogg Institute, Working Paper # 245 - November 1997
[25] SUZY BERMUDEZ QUINTANA The Beautiful Sex. The woman and the family during the Radical Olympus . Uniandes editions. (1993) - Daughters Wives and lovers. Gender, class, ethnicity and age in the history of Latin America Ediciones Uniandes Bogotá (1992) NEREA ARESTI ESTEBAN "The Angel of the Home and its Demons" Contemporary History 21, (2000) - pp 363-394
[26] Nerea Aresti Esteban "The Angel of the Home and its Demons" Contemporary History 21, (2000) - pp 363-394
[27] Julious Moebous  The mental inferiority of women, 1908
[28] . Emilia Pardo Bazán showed the duality of thought "the law made by men, that, whether they like it - deists, atheists, skeptics or rationalists - their daughters, sisters, wives and mothers can not be more than pure Catholic "" (The Spanish woman
[29]In Venezuela, despite the provisions of Guzmán Blanco, Father Machado and Mother Emilia Chapelin founded the Little Sisters of the Poor in Maiquetía in 1888 [29] for hospital care and a school for girls one year later. In 1890 Isabel Lagrange founded the Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to collect and educate poor girls in Caracas. In 1896 Archbishop Castro of Caracas founded the Servants of the Most Holy Sacrament [29]. In Aragua, Venezuela, Rosa Enriqueta Irigoyen Arévalo, with the support of the parish priest, José Manuel Jiménez founded the community of the Lourdes sisters in 1909 to provide education for girls without resources. In Peru, Teresa de la Cruz Candamo, daughter of a wealthy family, founded the Canonesas de la Cruz in 1919 to attend catechesis and liturgy.

[30] GARCIA RUIZ JESUS. (2010) "Christianity and migration: between" church of transplant and strategies of accompaniment "in  Histoire and Memoire   Les Cahiers ALHIM No 20 Migrations, Religions et integration.
[31] Movements of the Catholic Congresses of Mons Von Ketteller, in Germany, the Catholic Association of French Youth, under the impulse of Albert le Mun, The Catholic Movement in Italy,
[32] LEON XIII in several  Encyclicals " QUOD APOSTOLICI MUNERIS ", of December 28, 1878; RERUM NOVARUM ", May 15, 1891; and GRAVES DE COMMUNI ", of January 18, 1901; and also, in particular Instruction emanating from the Sacred Congregation of Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Businesses on January 27, 1902, seeks the organization of the laity.
Pío X ( 1903 and 1914 ) established a structure for the Catholic movement that acted in social and political life under the influence of the Church Encyclical letter on the regime of Popular Catholic Action of December 18, 1903  The purpose , institution and development of the "Catholic Action" in Italy (June 11, 1905)
Pio XI (1922-1939) Non Abbiamo Bisogno 29 d ejunio de 1931 Faced with the persecution of Catholic Action by Fascism, Catholic Action is defined as the bearer of the hierarchical apostolate and the bearer of a canonical mandate to carry out its work.
[33] In 1896 the French novelist Marie Maugeret (1844-1928) founded the Society of Christian feminists and in 1898 the Nationalist Union of French Women, In 1903 the League of German Catholic Women was founded. In 1908 the Princess Marìa Cristina Giustiniani Bandini proposes an organization of the women that gave origin to the Union of Italian Catholic Women. In 1911 in London the Catholic Women's Sufrage Society was founded. See Lunen -Chenu, Ma.Therese "the Church before feminism. Concilium 111 (1976)
[34] Pius X speech of April 21, 1909
[35] French Miller. Latin American Women and the Search for Social Justice
[36] Pope Francis. Audience Plenary Assembly of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, March 9, 2018.
[37] O.BEOZZO. The Church against the liberal states (1880-1930) in E.DUSSEL edit. Resistances and Hopes , San José DEI 1995.
[38] Because "the fathers" were out of this task for centuries. Today, there are many families in which the educator in faith is the father and the mother does not practice faith (not even in the case of the marriages of men who educate their children in the faith). I in my last parish, In family catechesis, he had several cases in which the person accompanying the child was the father and the mother often resisted or only accepted. Comment of Father Ernesto Fiocchetto. Mendoza Argentina.
[39]   The Chileans were the first to attempt an organization of female Catholic Action. In 1921 an association of Catholic young ladies was founded in Santiago under the denomination of Catholic Action of the Feminine Youth M EZQUERRA: Chile, the Catholic Action of the feminine youth , report presented to the Congress of FIJC realized in Rome in 1947, in Vivante Action Catholique . special consecrated to the congress of Gand. pp 56 and 57
[40] LASTRA: art. cit. pp 8.
[41] C. DE HEMPTINNE was President of the World Youth of Catholic Action for thirty years, she developed an outstanding work spreading the proposal of the Catholic Action for the five continents.
[42] SEBASTIANO LEME. First Cardinal of Brazil, he led the Brazilian Church during the first half of the century and in his strategies for the recovery of the political, social and cultural space of the ecclesiastical institution used Catholic Action as the cornerstone of his project.
[43] "As missoes do Bem" in: Diario da Noite , 12.08.32, pp. 1 and 2. "Visites en Amérique du sud, de Mlle. Hemptinne ", in Jeunesse Nouvelle, March 1964.
[44] "You visit in Amérique du sud, of Mlle. Hemptinne, "in Jeunesse Nouvelle , March 1964. His courses were translated and edited by the ladies of Lima who constituted the Catholic Action of the Peruvian woman and spread throughout the continent. D'HEMPTINNE CHRISTINE, Handbook of Catholic Action. Lima 1935
[45] Pius XII, October 1945 appeal of Italian women.
[46] Pius XII 1947 Disc. to the International Congress of Women's Catholic Leagues
[47] Pius XII Disc. to the participants in the XIV International Convention of the World Union of Catholic Women's Organizations (September 29, 1957) ( 906)
[48] Pius XII April 1943 Address to the Youth of AC, cited by Salas María op cit. P.22
[49] Society of ideas: a form of socialization whose principle is that its members must, in order to preserve their role in it, divest themselves of all concrete particularities and their real social existence. The opposite of what in the old Regime were called bodies, defined by a community of professional or social interests lived as such. The society of ideas is characterized by the fact that each of its members has only one relationship with ideas: in this sense these societies anticipate the functioning of democracy "JEAN PIERRE BASTIAN The dissidents. Protestant societies and revolution in Mexico 1872-1911. FCE Mexico 1989.
[50] Report of the National Council of Colombian Catholic Action to Vitorino Veronese, President of International Congresses of Catholic Works, October 1935, conserved in the Private Documentary Fund (FDP).
[51] Salas María From the Promotion of Women to Feminist Theology , 1993, Santnader, Sal Terre
[52] PICADO MANUEL (1985) "The Church before the Benefactor State" in the General History of the Church in Latin America. T.VI Central America .p.540
[53] ALFONSO SALINIT (1960) "The Church of Latin America" ​​inEssays on Pastoral Problems of the Catholic Church today. Rome
[54] Rivas Nelda.  They went to announce it: Parishes animated by religious communities in Uruguay . (2008) Montevideo, Obsur Doble Clic, see also Bonino María, With desire of Wind: the experience CRIMPO in Uruguay (1978-1996 ) - 1997, Montevideo, OBSUR.
[55]   RELIGIOUS BRAZILIAN. (1998) Sources for the study of the history of women's congregations in Brazil. CLAR PROJECT. Directed by AM BIDEGAIN (2003) Historical Memory of the female religious life. Lima CEP

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