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Pope Francis appoints first woman in senior synod post

Date: 09 February 2021 Tags: Appointments & Resignations
  • Pope Francis has broken with Catholic tradition to appoint a woman as an undersecretary of the synod of bishops, the first to hold the post with voting rights in a body that studies major questions of doctrine.
  • Frenchwoman Nathalie Becquart is one of the two new undersecretaries named on February 6 to the synod, where she has been a consultant since 2019.
  • The synod is led by bishops and cardinals who have voting rights and also comprises experts who cannot vote, with the next gathering scheduled for autumn 2022.
  • The pope has signalled his wish to reform the synod and have women and laypeople play a greater role in the church.
  • He named Spaniard Luis Marin de San Martin as the other under undersecretary in the synod of bishops.