Friday, 6th February, Pope Francis appointed two people as under-secretaries to the Synod of Bishops. The appointees were Sr Nathalie Becquart and Fr Luis Marin de San Martin.
Becquart’s appointment is the first time a woman has held a senior Vatican position.
Women have previously been observers of the Synod’s sessions, Becquart herself has been a consultant to the Synod since 2019. However, this is the first time a woman is getting voting rights.
The Synod of Bishops is a permanent institution established in 1965 by Pope Paul VI that advises the Pointiff and debates controversial issues in the Roman Catholic Church.
Cardinal Mario Grech, the body’s secretary-general, says the appointment showed that “a door has opened”. He also mentioned that the decision is in line with the Pope’s vision to increase women’s participation in the process of discernment and decision-making in the church.
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