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In a First, Pope Francis Names Three Women to Hitherto All-Male Committee

Francis has named two nuns and a lay woman for the top-level posts.

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Edited By :Tejas Harad

In a first, women will be a part of a hitherto all-male committee that is responsible for advising Pope Francis in decisions regarding the selection of bishops across the world, the Vatican said on Wednesday, 13 July.

Francis has named two nuns – Raffaella Petrini and Yvonne Reungoat – and a lay woman – Maria Lia Zervino – for the top-level positions in the committee. In early August, Francis had revealed his decision regarding this to Reuters.

Explaining the reason behind the appointment of women, he told the publication that "he wanted to give women more top-level positions in the Holy See."

While Petrini currently serves as deputy governor of the Vatican City, Reungoat is a French nun, and Zervino is a head of association of women's catholic organisations UMOFC.

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Background

In the recent past, Francis has named several women, both nuns and lay Catholics, to leadership positions in the Vatican departments.

Last year, he gave Sister Raffaella Petrini the number two position in the governorship of Vatican City, making her the highest ranking woman in the country.

He named Sister Alessandra Smerilli, an Italian nun, to the number two position in the development office of the Vatican, and Nathalie Becquart, a French member of the Xaviere Missionary Sisters, is co-undersecretary of the Synod of Bishops.

Additionally, Francis has appointed several lay Catholic women to top jobs at the Vatican, such as Barbara Jatta, the first female director of the Vatican Museums, and Cristiane Murray, the deputy director of the Vatican Press Office.

(With inputs from Reuters.)

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Topics:  Pope Francis   Vatican 

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