According to a new document endorsed by Pope Francis, women are right to be pissed off about “male authoritarianism, domination, various forms of enslavement, abuse and sexist violence” in the Catholic Church, but...... they still can’t be priests.
The Church “can support the call to respect women’s rights, and offer convinced support for greater reciprocity between males and females, while not agreeing with everything some feminist groups propose,” according to the text.
The document is the culmination of an October 2018 meeting of bishops about young people’s alienation from the church. The Associated Press notes that “it uses millennial lingo, calling the Virgin Mary an ‘influencer’ and describing relations with God in computing terms: ‘hard disk,’ ‘archive’ and ‘deleting.’” I shudder.
Pope Francis does call for some reform, including recommending that women be placed in more roles in the church and deeper teachings on sexual development, but he doesn’t go so far as to welcome gay people into the Church or elevate women to priesthood.
The document also calls for an “eradication” of sexual abuse in the Church, but doesn’t explicitly outline a “zero tolerance” policy. From the AP:
He calls for the faithful to call out a priest who seems at risk of seeking affections from young people “and remind him of his commitment to God and his people.”
Asked why there was no reference to Francis’ frequent call for “zero tolerance” for abuse, [Cardinal Lorenzo] Baldisseri said the pope doesn’t need to repeat the phrase in every document. “You don’t need to say ‘zero tolerance’ every time you go to lunch and dinner,” he said.
The thing that most reveals the Church’s half-assed commitment to justice, though, is how the document came together: 267 cardinals, bishops, and priests offered input a document attempting to address women’s rights, while only seven nuns were invited, and none of those women had the right to vote on the final text. How nice.