Vatican officials downplay speculation on women deacons
[The papal pooper-scoopers again go into action]
Catholic World News – May 16, 2016
Two Vatican officials downplayed speculation occasioned by Pope Francis’s call for the establishment of a commission to study women deacons– “above all with regard to the early days of the Church,” as the Pope said during a question-and-answer session with women religious superiors on May 12.
In examining the Pope’s remarks, “we need to be honest” said Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Holy See Press Office. “The Pope did not say he intends to introduce the ordination of female deacons, and even less did he talk about the ordination of women as priests.”
“The Holy Father has telephoned me, surprised about the … deaconesses!” tweeted Archbishop Angelo Becciu, the Substitute of the Secretariat of State, who coordinates the work of the Curia. “He thinks about a commission. Let us not rush the conclusions!”
Addendum from Catholic News Service – May 16, 2016: VATICAN SPOKESMAN SAYS NEW DEACONESS COMMISSION IS NOT A PATHWAY TO ORDINATION
In a video statement a day after the UISG meeting, Sister Carmen Sammut, president of the UISG, said of the Pope’s remarks: “He was very strong about the fact that women should be in the decision-making processes and the decision-making positions of the Church,” she said.
“About the diaconate,” she said, the sisters “had proposed that there would be a commission. He accepted that proposal and has said that he would bring that forward so that it could be studied even more than it has already. And I hope that one day there will be a real decision about this.”
FutureChurch, the Catholic organisation striving for greater recognition for the role of women within the Church, welcomed the Pope’s plans for the commission saying they had been praying for this for over ten years. In an e-newsletter sent to supporters, FutureChurch said they would “closely follow the development of the commission and other initiatives focusing on Catholic women deacons and work to influence the development of the commission to study women deacons and its membership”.