Feminists believe that men bully women

For Women's Day on March 8th Courage to be angry!

Up until the year 2000, I secretly wondered if International Women's Day on March 8 was really needed. After all, women should be celebrated 365 days a year! Maybe I asked myself that because I grew up in Switzerland, where I always feel like «Equal rights» felt.

It was only through my work in the Fidel Götz Foundation, which works exclusively with Catholic organizations and the institutional church, that I was taught better: I saw an injustice or inequality and discrimination that shook up my value system. For the first time I saw the church system through the eyes of committed women religious - women who everywhere, often at the end of the world, achieve incredible things to help people and are the ones who live and carry out the actual mission of the church.

I found that «my church» not only represents a religious community, but institutionally and organizationally resembles a non-governmental organization (NGO), almost a global corporation in which mainly women do the work, but have no voice in the system, let alone in the leadership.

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, abbreviated to the UN Women's Convention or CEDAW, was never signed by the Vatican, the heart administration of the universal church institution and at the same time city-state - although the actual contribution to the church's mission lies with women. The Catholic Church as «World employer» seen even today there is still no evidence of a gender policy that applies to the entire world church. The fact that women's rights are human rights does not apply to the largest humanitarian organization in the world! Isn't that absurd and shouldn't women just get angry?

Feminism in the Church

When one talks about what stands in the way of equal rights for women in the church, the conversation mostly revolves around men - in our case the 0.01% consecrated men of the total of 1.3 billion believers - who just sit in the executive chairs and theirs Taking advantage of power because it is based on a patriarchal system. It justifies the men who don't want to change anything and keep looking the other way.

But that's only one side of the coin. The patriarchy is a system that many Catholic women still support.

I would therefore like to speak deliberately about us women here. A few days ago I received this email (not a nun!):"Awful! Pray, pray - message from Our Lady! Dear Ms. Goetz, if you women really want to do something good, finally stop attacking our faith and our church. With deeply concerned greetings, M.S. »

Dear (criticizing) women, you make me angry! Why don't you question the prevailing ecclesiastical system instead of kicking your sister on the shin? The system is called patriarchy and according to the definition it deliberately devalues ​​women - in all respects. It aims to make women powerless or muzzled, or to suppress their opinions. The word too «feminism» is almost a fall from grace for many of us women in the Church. Screaming heaven and incomprehensible from my point of view. The goal of feminism is equality. Equality means that we believe that we have a right to a life of more integrity and authenticity, a right to education, to paid work. A right to dignity!

Courage to be angry

But the church system does not give us women a voice or a say. We are ignored, and in certain countries we are still punished, killed, harassed and humiliated. This is where my courage to be angry comes up: Just because I'm a woman, I don't let 0.01% male ordained decision-makers deny me these basic rights! And I will not give any rest until my own church implements them and lives them. I would have to be deeply ashamed if I did not stand up for our basic rights, which apply in society, but not in the church!

I am deeply influenced by Switzerland and did my high school diploma with the Pallottines, so that I would let this value attitude be taken away from me - certainly not by «Fellow sisters» in the church. It initially took courage - at the age of 30 - to stand up against the hierarchy, but the anger in me triggered positive energy and creativity in order to look for ways that sooner or later firmly anchored human rights must also be valid in our church.

No more church patriarchy

Dear nagging women, through your silence or your negative remarks to your fellow sisters and brothers, you make the church «with-broken». The patriarchal church system has silenced us women for centuries, and the fresh, brave ones «Catherina of Siena Voices» got lost. But we win back these voices: We recognize the misogyny in ourselves and in the church. With this we end patriarchy and stand up for equal dignity and equal rights.

I am a proud feminist who enthusiastically stands up to pave the way for an emancipated church!

According to Pope Francis, the Church is a "story of love". It is the mission of all of us to implement the work of love in the world. This love, also called “church”, is what we women wear and create. Without us, this work would not exist. It is the 0.01% of gentlemen who are authorized to make decisions who are unable to recognize what love it takes to lead this work. Men who do not have the necessary management experience or a lack of financial, economic or political training to cover clerical abuse, financial mismanagement and a lack of care, who cannot say or ask when they do not know something.

The Pope needs a women's council

I advocate a female CEO in the Curia representing the Pope «in love» advises. It is inexplicable how the Pope can only have cardinals in his closest circle of advisers, where history teaches that pure male societies bring even great visions to failure. Three years ago, Voices of Faith suggested that he urgently set up a women's committee for advice. But Francis, for all his openness and passion, is immune to advice from women.

I advocate that we women take responsibility for the «story of love»!

I currently see my hope and my commitment in the fact that we, as a growing network of Catholic women worldwide, can sensitize many women to stand up for their own church with united forces, women's solidarity and humor. Tidying up your own house is a top priority. We should be proud feminists and treat March 8th as an official church holiday until the abuse of power and marginalization have ended and equal dignity and equal rights apply in the Vatican and in the world church.

We are the change!

Sr. Clara Torres, Johannesburg, Comboni Sister, Project "without chains"

Sr. Lucy, Nairobi, Comboni Sister, Project "violated women become entrepreneurs"

Voting Rights for Synod 2019 with Swiss religious women

Papal audience