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Eastern Orthodox Studies Unit and Ecclesiological Investigations Unit

Call for Proposals

Title: Current Debates on Women's Ordination to the Diaconate (Joint Session with Eastern Orthodox Studies Unit and Ecclesiological Investigations Unit)
At this session we would like to discuss women's ordination in various forms across churches, with the focus on those churches that are currently in debates about expanding ordination through the diaconate or other structures. The conversation surrounding the female diaconate is especially important in Orthodox Christianity (in both Eastern and Oriental traditions) and for the Catholic Church. Interest in the historical tradition of the female diaconate has prompted dialogue and controversy within Orthodox Christianity, as well as reconsideration of more recent expressions of the female diaconate where it exists. In the Catholic Church, the discussion about the female diaconate did reach a certain level of theoretical consensus, but has yet to result in any practical applications. In addition to ecclesiological aspects, we welcome proposals that explore related questions of sexuality and gender constructions, taboos, ideals, prejudices, etc. that shape current conversations related to women’s ordination, ecclesial leadership and apostolate in general, as well as the overall participation of women in church. We would also like to invite papers on lessons that can be learned from the realities of ordained women's work and examples of exercising authority, in churches that ordain women or otherwise have recognized the exercise of authority by women for some time.



Steering Committee Members



Review Process

Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members until after final acceptance/rejection