11 December 2014, The Tablet

Women theologians are 'the strawberry on the cake', says Pope

Pope Francis has praised the role of women in theology, saying that women have a "feminine genius" that helps them discern "unexplored aspects of the unfathomable mystery of Christ."

He told the Vatican theological commission that advises him and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith that he wanted more women on the committee. Women "are the strawberry on the cake,” but we want more, he said. 

Francis has previously said that women should have greater decision-making powers in the Church. The presence of women, the Pope said, "becomes an invitation to reflect on the role that women can and should play in the field of theology."

“By virtue of their feminine genius, [female] theologians can detect, for the benefit of all, some unexplored aspects of the unfathomable mystery of Christ,” the Pope said. "I invite you, therefore, to take the best advantage of this specific contribution of women to the intelligence of faith."

Francis advised the International Theological Commission of 30 theologians, including five women, to respect a diverse range of views and listen to the "signs of the times" in their work. Opposed factions “cannot ignore each other, but in theological dialogue should enrich and correct each other," he said.

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