Following Pope Francis’ pivotal decision to expand participation in the Vatican’s upcoming Synod of Bishops to include lay men and women, Discerning Deacons released the following statement:
“Discerning Deacons is thrilled by this historic announcement. The Pope’s decision demonstrates a Church that is already listening to the cries and hopes of the people of God. The expansion of participation in the upcoming Synod of Bishops to include lay women marks a pivotal moment that demonstrates that the Catholic Church is listening to and recognizing the importance of inclusive participation in the discernment process. This is yet another seismic shift for the way the Catholic church walks in the world. We encourage Catholic Church leadership to continue this vital work towards genuinely valuing the voices and trusting all of the faithful–women, men, lay, clergy–to be part of discerning the path forward the Church is called to when they gather together in Rome this fall.”
The Synod of Bishops launches the fourth Universal phase of the synodal process and will take place in Rome from October 4-29, 2023, and is expected to address church governance and a number of topics in the Church, including the role of women in Church leadership.