Church seeks women's views

 Two initiatives are currently underway to seek the views of Catholic women on church issues. Following discussions with the National Conference of Priests, The National Board of Catholic Women are preparing a booklet entitled: Healing Priesthood, featuring articles by women who are involved in the church in specific ways (eg in the media, theology, ministry, education, and social responsibility and justice). They also want to include a selection of short comments from women across the dioceses of England and Wales. These can take any aspect of the theme: Healing Priesthood - What does 'healing priesthood' mean to you? Have you had any experience of 'healing priesthood'? Do you have any comments on this theme that can help move the church forward? The NBCW suggests women could get together in groups or submit individual comments. Responses must be sent to Women in the Church, NBCW, 12 Wordall Road, Yarm, Cleveland, TS15 9DF or e-mail: A second consultation comes from the Joint Dialogue Group* (set up in 1994) between the NBCW and the Bishops' Conference). This invited dioceses to consider the Pope's invitation to 'develop a dialogue with women on what it means to be a woman of our time'. The consultation, which is based on three main areas: Prayer, Thinking and earning Structures, is open to everyone and will be ongoing for the next six months. Responses can be individual as a group with in parish. The collated information will be shared with the Bishops of England and Wales and will form the basis for the next biannual national conference of the Joint Dialogue Group in autumn 2002. Suggested topics for discussion include: - Can you give examples of the church listening to women and responding in its thinking and understanding? -what is your experience of the Church's success. failure to include women in its structures? - What has helped deepen your prayer life? - Can you give any examples of how you or women you know are invited to bring the perceptions of women into the prayers and liturgies. Send your response to: The JDG, NBCW, 12 Wordall Road, Yarm, Cleveland, TS15 9DF or e-mail: *Members of the Joint Dialogue Group are: Bishop Malone, Fr Turner, Assistant General Secretary to the Bishops' Conference, Bishop Keiron Conry, Freda Lambert, Angela Perkins, Pat Hughes, and Verena Wright, Sr Raymunda Jordan, Conference of Religious.

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