· Vatican City ·

Feminism and Catholic identity

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27 June 2020

Feminism and Catholicism have not always gotten on with each other. Therefore, it is no surprise if a diploma on the subject has aroused such interest; all the more so if it is being offered at a high-level Catholic institution.

Women in Public Life: Feminism and Catholic Identity in the 21st Century, is the title of an international diploma in Social Doctrine of the Church, organized by the Latin American Academy of Catholic Leaders. The objective is clear: to reflect on a new feminism which has an irrefutable Christian identity. Even though the theme is not new, it is still a subject that proves divisive. In Mulieris dignitatem (1988), John Paul II had hoped for a Christian feminism that was capable of resisting the temptation to imitate male models and to express, on the contrary, the authentic feminine genius.

From July 11 to 25, this year, renowned personalities will come together to speak about this issue from an evangelical perspective. In addition, they will try to discern aspects of different feminisms, and identify the risks of ideological manipulation. Regarding the event, it is not to be underestimated that the inaugural session has been entrusted to the head of the Roman Curia, Father Alexandre Awi Mello, secretary of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life. The choice of entrusting the opening event to such a figure is a demonstration of the extent to which the condition and expectations of women, the necessary valorization of their commitment and abilities, as well as the injustices and abuses of which they are victims, challenge the Catholic Church today.

By Romilda Ferrauto