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Catholic Women Religious Superiors Should Vote at the Pan-Amazonian Synod
Release date: 
Sunday, September 15, 2019

To: Pope Francis, Synod Officials, Cardinals, Bishops

Catholic Women Religious Superiors Should Vote at the Pan-Amazonian Synod

We call on Catholics to sign our petition ( calling on Pope Francis and the secretary general of the Synod, Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri to

1. Amend the synod's agenda so that women’s full voting rights is the first topic of discussion when it opens on October 7th.

2. Amend the synod's protocols to include women religious as voting members.

3. Ensure language in the final synod document gives women full voting rights.

Why is this important?

As the upcoming Pan-Amazonian Synod begins on October 6, 185 men are expected to vote on the final document, and 0 women are expected to vote. One non-ordained, religious brother is voting while no non-ordained, religious sisters will be voting. Women who have the same ecclesial status as non-ordained men are excluded, again.

In 2018, calls for women religious to vote at the Synod on Youth came from Catholics across the globe. Women religious themselves worked hard for the vote. And the final document, which was the will of the bishops, for the first time, called the inclusion of women in decision-making structures a “duty of justice.”

This year, among the 265 participants, only 33 are women.

Ten of the women are religious from the International Union of Superiors General (UISG). This group of women have the identical ecclesial status as the male non-ordained religious superiors, one of whom is voting at the synod. Still, these women religious superiors are not voting at the synod.

Two women religious were named as part of the pre-synodal council, orchestrating the agenda and the working document alongside 16 ordained men. All 16 ordained men on this list are voting members of the Synod. The two women religious are auditors but not voting.

This injustice must end.

Join us in signing this petition. We will not stop until women have the right to vote at our synods.

How it will be delivered

We will deliver the signatures to the secretary of the Synod of Bishops office at the end of synod.

FutureChurch   Women's Ordination Conference    Voices of Faith

About FutureChurch Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, FutureChurch seeks changes that will provide all Roman Catholics the opportunity to participate fully in Church life and leadership. It is a national coalition of parish centered Catholics striving to educate fellow Catholics about the seriousness of the priest shortage, the centrality of the Eucharist (the Mass), and the systemic inequality of women in the Catholic Church. FutureChurch is a nonprofit organization that makes presentations throughout the country, distributes education, advocacy and prayer resources and recruits activists who work on behalf of its mission.