Note: Read the white paper developed by a collaborative working group that included members from the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests (AUSCP), lay religious, and representatives from VOTF and FutureChurch.
The Women’s Initiative is dedicated to the proposition that all baptized Catholics—women and men—have equal access to all positions within the Church and have a voice in all decision-making processes. VOTF encourages conversation on all ministries and opportunities for women, but we focus our project work primarily on the restoration of the female diaconate.
In conjunction with FutureChurch and the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests, VOTF participates in DeaconChat, an initiative aimed at fostering education and conversations about women deacons. The program includes three elements:
- Learn about women deacons.
- Share what you learn with others--both lay and clergy.
- Connect with others for conversations about restoring this Church ministry for women.
While on the DeaconChat page, be sure to check out the resources available for download. We are grateful to FutureChurch for preparing the web pages and sharing their documents so that we all can participate in this vital conversation.
VOTF and FutureChurch also have issued a call for U.S. bishops to to publicly support the restoration of the female diaconate.
For a broader look at the issues and resources on women deacons, also check out the Catholic Women Deacons website.
Read Women Deacons: Past, Present, and Future by Gary Macy, William T. Ditewig, and Phyllis Zagano and host sessions using the Study Guide prepared to accompany the book (after clicking the link, look in the left-hand column and click "Download Study Guide for Women Deacons."
DeaconChat Campaign -- collaborative effort with AUSCP and FutureChurch
Women Deacons: How Long? -- paper on restoring the female diaconate to the Church (15 pages)
Suggested Readings: Women in the Church -- additional resources and information on women's roles (9 pages)