Women and the Catholic Church


Sir, – The truth is that the ideals espoused by the Catholic Church mean the same, whether preached from the pulpit by a man, or a woman.

Women play a very strong role, working in the background, to assist the Catholic Church in carrying out its various activities. A role which seems not to be properly appreciated by the hierarchy within that church.

I doubt very much that the Catholic Church could function at all if women withdrew their support from it.

Perhaps it is time for Catholic women to do just that and go on strike (as the women of Spain did during International Women’s Day), for a week, a fortnight, a month, or for as long as it takes for the hierarchy within the church to wake up to the fact that Catholicism and participation within it is for all genders.

If the hierarchy will not budge, Catholic women should remember that there are other Christian-based religions in Ireland to turn to, who do allow full participation by women and who would welcome them with open arms.

Mary McAleese would seem the obvious choice to organise such a strike. – Yours, etc,



Co Carlow.

Sir, – Mary McAleese has insulted the thousands of women who take part in the life of the church, as if what they are and what they do count for nothing. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 5.

Sir, – I see that Pope Francis appointed Cardinal Kevin Farrell to head the dicastery of the laity in 2016. Clearly no better man! – Yours, etc,



Sir, – I would urge all my fellow brothers who stepped up in the Catholic Church to take up the diaconate role to express their solidarity with their Catholic sisters who are still refused entry even to this role. This could take the form of en masse resignations or, if that is too radical, they could at least make some prophetic gesture towards their disenfranchised sisters. – Yours, etc,



Co Dublin.

Sir, – The price we pay for educating women and allowing them to study theology! – Yours, etc,



Co Kerry.