Christus Vivit 42: An Example With Feminism

Pope Francis gives an example of institutional fear: our struggle with feminism, a main departure point for many young women.

42. For example, a Church that is overly fearful and tied to its structures can be invariably critical of efforts to defend the rights of women, and constantly point out the risks and the potential errors of those demands. Instead, a living Church can react by being attentive to the legitimate claims of those women who seek greater justice and equality. A living Church can look back on history and acknowledge a fair share of male authoritarianism, domination, various forms of enslavement, abuse and sexist violence. With this outlook, she 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. Along these lines, the Synod sought to renew the Church’s commitment “against all discrimination and violence on sexual grounds”.[FD 150] That is the response of a Church that stays young and lets herself be challenged and spurred on by the sensitivities of young people.

I remember a recent article in a Catholic magazine that urged men to be involved in their children’s lives. The author seemed unaware that studies over the past four decades show men far more engaged in child-rearing than men of pre-feminism times. I would imagine that women’s rights movements of the 60s and 70s had far more influence than any church-sponsored initiative.

You can check Pope Francis’ full Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation on this link at the Vatican site.

Any comments?

The text in color is © Copyright – Libreria Editrice Vaticana

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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