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Vatican Not a Credible Source on Women

July 30, 2004

As Vatican prepares to release statement on feminism, CFFC questions its exclusion of women from leadership in church

WASHINGTON, DC—A new Vatican document on women to be released on Saturday, July 31, is unlikely to position the Vatican as a credible or objective source of information, analysis, or support for women’s rights. “Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on Collaboration between Men and Women in the Church and in the World” surfaces as the world’s women begin their preparations for a ten-year analysis of the UN women’s conference held in Beijing in 1995. At this conference, the Vatican was seen as a source of disinformation and as an obstacle to international policy that improves women’s lives. Early reports indicate that the document rehashes the same false charges and stereotypes about feminism, including the charge that feminism is hostile to men. The reality is that it is the Vatican that is hostile to women’s full inclusion in the church itself. Until the Vatican addresses its own exclusion of women from leadership, it is hard to believe anyone will take seriously its views on women.

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