News
Jesuit Superior General Says Women's Full Inclusion in the Church 'Has Not Yet Arrived'

March 10, 2017 —  Father Arturo Sosa, SJ, Superior General of the Society of Jesus, joined women and men from around the globe for Voices of Faith, an annual event held in Vatican City to mark International Women’s Day on March 8. He told those gathered that “if we are honest, we acknowledge that the fullness of women's participation in the church has not yet arrived.”

Fr. Sosa gave the opening address at the conference, which celebrated and encouraged the need for women's voices to be heard in the church and in the world. Organized by Voices of Faith, Jesuit Refugee Service and the Fidel Gotz Foundation, the event’s theme was “Stirring the waters: Making the impossible possible.”

Although Pope Francis has voiced his support for broader participation of women's voices in the decisions of the Catholic Church, Fr. Sosa said, “that inclusion, which would bring the gifts of resilience and collaboration even more deeply into the church, remains stymied on many fronts.”

 

“No one is more resilient that women building and supporting the church in the poorest parts of our world,” he said.

Fr. Sosa said the participation of women is also necessary in positions of leadership, especially in areas of conflict such as the Central African Republic, South Sudan and Colombia. While it is hard to imagine peace, “can we have the audacity to dream that women and men working together will bring peace to these countries?” he asked.

He praised German Chancellor Angela Merkel, calling her “the most courageous and visionary leader in Europe during this time of phenomenal forced migration.”

Fr. Sosa also cited the example of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, president of Liberia, for bringing peace and reconciliation “to her war-torn country in a way that most men thought would be impossible.”

He concluded by quoting St. Francis of Assisi: “Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” Fr. Sosa said it was in that spirit that they gathered “to listen to Voices of Faith, to hear stories of resilience, collaboration and inclusion. We have more than started. We will not stop.”

The event featured several guest speakers, including Dr. Mireille Twayigira, a survivor of the Rwandan genocide, and two sisters who are refugees from Homs, Syria, and work with Jesuit Refugee Service helping others forced to flee violence in their homeland.

Among the presenters at a panel discussion was Sister Simone Campbell, executive director of Network, a Catholic social justice lobbying organization that sponsored the "Nuns on the Bus" tour in the United States.

Sister Campbell explained it was “essential for women to work for peace” and social justice, particularly for the poor and the marginalized, and she praised Pope Francis' efforts to bring their plight to the forefront of Catholic social teaching.


Sister Simone Campbell (right) speaks during the Voices of Faith gathering. (CNS photo/Massimiliano Migliorato, Catholic Press Photo)

“­­We rejoice in Laudato Si' that (says) care for the earth and care for the poor come from the same reality of exploitation of both and that until we learn to end the exploitation, we will not care for those at the margins, we will not care for our earth. And that is what moves me in such a deep way,” she said.

To read the full text of Fr. Sosa’s address, click here.

[Sources: Jesuit Curia, CNSNational Catholic Reporter]





Recent News

September 18, 2019 — The president of the Jesuit Conference and the U.S. and Canadian provincials released a joint statement calling for increased advocacy efforts.

Fr. Vinny Marchionni, SJ, who was ordained in June, reflects on his pastoral assignment this summer at a parish in Staten Island, NY.

Sept. 10, 2019 - Fr. Robert Hanlon, SJ, died peacefully on September 4, 2019. He was 87 years old. Fr. Hanlon entered the Society of Jesus on August 14, 1951, and was ordained on June 13, 1964. He pronounced his final vows on November 6, 1972.

September 4, 2019 - Earlier this year, the Jesuits announced four Universal Apostolic Preferences, among them was a call to protect the environment. To respond to this, we will be sharing a series of monthly ecology reflections produced by Fr. John Surette, SJ. Read his September reflection: “Becoming More Fully Human in our 21st Century.”

September 4, 2019 - This month Pope Francis is asking us to join him in praying for the protection of the ocean. "Our solidarity with the 'common home' is born from our faith. Let us pray this month that politicians, scientists and economists work together to protect the world’s seas and oceans."

Aug. 27, 2019 - Register today for Jesuit Friends and Alumni Sunday! It is an opportunity for alumni and friends of the Jesuits to share in the celebration of liturgy, followed by a reception highlighting opportunities for continuing spiritual growth and service to the local and global community.

August 18, 2019 — Today is the feast day of Saint Alberto Hurtado, a Chilean Jesuit priest known for his engagement with Chilean culture and his work with young adults and the poor.

view all news

Search news







Campion Renewal Center
Campion Renewal Center, situated 20 miles west of Boston, is located in a peaceful setting that provides plenty of walking trails through the woods and fields.