Details: 18 - 20th Sept, Marriott Downtown Philadelphia, 1201 Market St

Contact: Miriam Duignan: (+1) 510- 984- 8678

Philadelphia, PA: Five hundred women's ordination advocates and leaders from 19 countries and 5 continents will gather in Philadelphia, September 18-20th to call for ordination and equality for women in the Roman Catholic Church.  As Pope Francis arrives in the United States, Women's Ordination Worldwide (WOW) urgently calls on the institutional Church to model equality and end the unjust treatment of women. 

The theme of the conference, "Gender, Gospel, and Global Justice," links the exclusion of women from priesthood to the greater inequalities and injustices experienced by women worldwide.  Speakers include, Sr. Teresa Forcades, Tina Beattie, Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, Mary E. Hunt, Sr. Theresa Kane, Shannen Dee Williams, Fr. Roy Bourgeois, Fr. Tony Flannery, Sr. Christine Schenk, Kate Kelly, Asra Nomani, Sr. Maureen Fiedler, and Barbara Blaine. See schedule here.

"Our hope for the conference is to mainstream the conversation about women's ordination as a social justice issue," said Kate McElwee, organizer and co-executive director of the Women's Ordination Conference.

"We call out sexism when we see it in our schools, the workplace, and in politics, but when it comes to the Catholic Church, far too many look the other way. Women's leadership is integral to all aspects of church and society and it is long overdue that our church opens the door to the ordination of women." Erin Saiz Hanna, organizer and co-executive director of the Women's Ordination Conference. 

"Women's Ordination Worldwide urges Pope Francis to recognize that maintaining false teaching to keep women excluded from priesthood legitimizes prejudice throughout the world. Pope Francis' integrity as a faith leader is compromised by his refusal to recognize women as fully human and able to discern their own vocations. Pope Francis' mission must include freeing the Church from the sin of sexism," stated Miriam Duignan, organizer and communications director of the Wijngaard's Institute for Catholic Research.

"Pope Francis and the Catholic Church must model equality by opening all ministries, including ordination, to women. As an institution that educates and provides healthcare and services to millions of women and girls globally, the Catholic Church must model full equality as the cornerstone of its mission," McElwee continued.