By Rita Ferrone June 27, 2016 Commonweal Magazine on-line
At last fall’s Synod on the Family, Archbishop Paul-André Durocher of Quebec asked that the ordination of women as deacons be considered. The suggestion didn’t seem to go anywhere. More recently, however, when a gathering of nine hundred heads of women’s religious communities from around the world (the International Union of Superiors General) raised this question again in May, Pope Francis was interested. He said he would call together an official commission to clarify the question of the historical role of women deacons. I was pleasantly surprised.
It was not long, however, before doubts set in. Hadn’t such a study already been done, with zero result? And the pope’s idea of asking the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) to inform him of the state of the question—wasn’t that the kiss of death? After all, the head of the CDF, Cardinal Gerhard Müller, is well known for his opposition to women in the diaconate. Was this just a way to avoid a tough question—form a committee?
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