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International Womens' Day 2015

woman-man-book-cover-thumbWomen have so much to offer the Church

The talents and skills of women have not yet been harnessed, more than 15 years after a ground-breaking report was released on women's participation in the Church.

To celebrate International Women's Day 2015, the Office for the Participation of Women has launched an e-book of the 'Woman and Man: One in Christ Jesus' report, a research project on the participation of Women in the Catholic Church in Australia.

'We're excited to launch a digital version of the book to make sure it is easily accessible in the lead up to International Women's Day on 8 March, particularly since the book is no longer printed in hard copy,' said Director of the Office for the Participation of Women, Donella Johnston.

One of the greatest challenges to emerge from the research was the need to create a range of opportunities in the Church for respectful listening and a dialogue concerning the experiences, needs and aspirations of women.

"The report is still relevant more than 15 years after it was first presented to the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference," Ms Johnston said. "In particular, the report recommended the increased involvement of women in decision-making at all levels."

Pope Francis has urged the Church to "create still broader opportunities for a more incisive female presence in the Church". (Evangelii Gaudium, 103)

Ms Johnston said the report would help inform a discussion among a new generation of women about how they can take up opportunities to contribute to the life of the Church.

The 500-page report can be downloaded from the OPW website on tablet and other mobile devices as an e-book. It begins with an executive summary and includes an overview of the findings on chapter nine.

View a YouTube video of Cardinal Clancy officially launching the book at the National Press Club on 18 August 1999.

Following the report's publication, the Australian Catholic Bishops published a series of recommendations in the year 2000 as part of the Social Justice Sunday Statement.

Visit this page to view all resources for Women and Man: One in Christ Jesus