Leadership Conference of Women Religious - Doctrinal Issues - Women’s Ordination

Women’s Ordination

On October 7, 1979, Sister Theresa Kane R.S.M., former president of the LCWR, issued a formal plea during Pope John Paul II's Apostolic visit to the United States at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception for "providing the possibility of women as persons being included in all ministries of the church." Since then, various similar sentiments were expressed by LCWR members which later drew conflict with the Holy Office who sought to maintain Catholic doctrinal orthodoxy, a position disputed by LCWR members as unfair and unjust to what they perceive as gender inequality in the Catholic Church. The LCWR were asked, ‘Please don’t talk about expanding ordination beyond celibate men.’ But the LCWR never withdrew a 1977 statement about women’s ordination, which concerned those doing the doctrinal assessment.

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