Female Anglican bishop addresses Pope Francis’ Council of Cardinals

A female Anglican bishop who has campaigned for “gender equality” addressed the Council of Cardinals on Monday as part of a session dedicated to deepening a reflection “on the role of women in the Church.”

Rev Jo Bailey Wells, deputy secretary general of the Anglican Communion, was one of the first generation of women to be ordained a vicar in the Church of England in 1995. Married to an Anglican clergyman with two children, she has also served as chaplain to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

The Anglican bishop, who in the past has praised “gender history” for highlighting how “institutions are gendered and how institutions gender individuals,” also addressed an interreligious meeting attended by Pope Francis in Kazakhstan in October 2022 when she reportedly said, “gender equality is part of God’s plans.”

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