Women have strong influence in Church, author insists
February 11, 2022
CWN Editor's Note: “Because leadership in the Catholic Church is often identified with sacramental ministry and women cannot be ordained, it is widely held that women have no influence in the Church,” said Carolyn Woo, the former CEO of Catholic Relief Services and dean of the University of Notre Dame’s business school. “I find the understatement of women’s influence and leadership misleading and unjust with damaging consequences.”
Woo said that 34% of Catholic university presidents, 67% of Catholic school principals, and 47% of Catholic Charities agencies are led by women—compared to 8% of Fortune 500 companies.
“Few recognize that laypeople share a responsibility with the clergy in proclaiming the Good News, bearing witness to the Gospel and serving those in need,” she added. “This point is made in the Second Vatican Council, emphasized by Pope Benedict XVI in his call for co-responsibility, and by Pope Francis in his critique of clericalism.”
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