WOMEN'S ORDINATION WORLDWIDE (W0W) Challenges Pope Benedict to Include Women in Church Leadership as Church Celebrates Proclamation of 12th  Century Feminist to be 4th woman Doctor of the Church in 2,000 years


October 7, 2012

  • Erin Saiz Hanna: 401.588.0457
  • Therese Koturbash: 204.648.5720

WOW Praises Pope Benedict for elevating Hildegard of Bingen to 4thWoman Doctor of Church

 – Women's Ordination Worldwide (WOW) joins Pope Benedict in celebrating as he proclaims Hildegard of Bingen to be the 4th woman Doctor of the Church. 

An environmentalist, composer, writer, and spiritual director,  Hildegard was a 12th century modern feminist of her time who was fiercely sanctioned by Church authorities for her outspoken criticism of their wrongdoings.

WOW Communications Coordinator, Therese Koturbash observes:  'While the  Pope presents Hildegard as an inspiration for women of today,  considering that his administration freely levies sanctions against modern women who challenge  Church leadership to do better for women, we take little comfort in knowing that were she alive today, Hildegard, on account of her outspokenness, would still be an outsider.'

Hildegard now joins other ancient and long since deceased women -- Catherine of Siena, Teresa of Avila and Therese of Lisieux -- as the only women Doctors of the Church in its 2,000 year old history.

On this day in particular, Hildegard's elevation begs the question, 'When will this Pope welcome modern living feminist women to equally participate with men in all levels of Church ministry and leadership?' 

Women's Ordination Worldwide (WOW):  Founded in 1996, WOW is an international network of groups whose current mission is the inclusion of Roman Catholic women in all ordained ministries. Founded on the principle of equality, WOW opposes all discrimination. 'There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus'. (Galatians 3:28)

WOW currently includes representatives from Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, France, Germany Great Britain, Ireland, Malta, Poland, and the United States.