(Crux) Mothers and women have always had a central role in the Catholic Church. The Virgin Mary is the ultimate example of its devotion to motherhood, to the point that one could say that every day is Mother’s Day in the Vatican.
Pope Francis, following the legacy of the previous two pontiffs, has taken steps to turn the Church’s devotion to women and mothers into facts, in part by calling for more women to be appointed to positions of prominence in the Vatican and throughout the Church.
“A Church without women would be like the apostolic college without Mary. The Madonna is more important that the Apostles, and the Church herself is feminine, the spouse of Christ and a mother,” Pope Francis told journalists on the flight back from Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in 2013.
“We cannot limit the role of women in the Church to altar girls or the president of a charity, there must be more.”
And more followed, with women being appointed by the Argentine pope to roles that had always been occupied by men. Some of the pope’s “firsties” are also mothers, and a few of them accepted to talk to Crux about their experiences, challenges and projects. [More]