Creating an Amazonian-rite liturgy and new ministries for laypeople, including the ordination of women deacons, are some of the recurring proposals made by small groups at the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon.
Such proposals, one group said, would increase as well as transform the Catholic Church’s presence in the Amazon, turning it from one of transience to one of permanence.
The group identified as Spanish-B noted differences of opinion. Some Synod members, it said, proposed asking the Pope for the “the possibility of conferring the priesthood on married men in the Amazon on an exceptional basis, under specific circumstances and for certain specific peoples, clearly establishing the reasons that justify it.”
The 12 small-group reports, published by the Vatican on Oct. 18, were the result of reflections in groups organized by language; each group summarized their members’ conclusions and offered proposals for the whole Synod. Most of the groups cited the presence of women as a “decisive factor in the life and mission of the church in the Amazon,” and one that must be recognized officially. Four of the groups explicitly called for the ordination of women deacons and three others said the church should study the possibility.