17 August 2018
It has been revealed to We Are Church Ireland that none of the 15 Cardinals who are coming to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families will attend "The Voices of Impact Women Leaders Shaping Global Change" Symposium on 24th and 25th August chaired by Ms Norah Casey and U.S. business executive Ms Susan Ann Davis.
The issues of misogyny and equality for women in the Catholic Church are not included in the Symposium program.
The Symposium was referred as being “extremely important” and “groundbreaking” in the invitational letter sent to selected women by the President of the WMoF, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin (letter attached)
"However if it is so groundbreaking, why are no Cardinals attending? The total absence of all the cardinals confirms that this is a fringe event intended to provide a fig leaf for the patriarchal hierarchy and an event without substance" stated Brendan Butler
Brendan Butler, We are Church spokesperson.
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Invitational letter from Archbishop Diarmuid Martin
Private and Confidential
Dear Ms. XXX
Pope Francis and the World Meeting of Families
The Holy See’s (Vatican) World Meeting of Families (WMOF), the largest worldwide family conference, is held every three years. This summer, it will be hosted in Dublin, from 21 to 26 August. Pope Francis personally chose Ireland for the conference and will be travelling to Dublin to participate.
For the very first time, the World Meeting of Families will be followed by a new and extremely important Women’s Leadership Symposium, “Voices of Impact: Women Leaders Shaping Global Change” on the evening of 24 August and the morning of 25 August. We would be honoured if you would agree to join us on the stage to share your wisdom and experience. A Festival of Families Concert for the Pope will follow on the evening of 25 August in Croke Park featuring Irish and international music artists to include Sir James Galway, Andrea Bocelli and Riverdance. And Pope Francis will celebrate a Papal Mass in the Phoenix Park on August 26. You and your guests would be our honoured guests for both.
The Women’s Leadership Symposium will spotlight the role of women within the family alongside their role as change agents starting and running businesses, fighting poverty and human trafficking, providing health care and education for the poor and, for many, leading corporations, NGOs and countries. This discussion couldn’t be more timely or more important. Our goal is to bring strong women’s voices together for two dedicated inspiring sessions that spark legacy conversations going forward.
“Voices of Impact: Women Leaders Shaping Global Change” will begin at 18.00 on Friday 24 August with an invitation-only dinner and program. On Saturday 25 August, the Symposium will continue bringing together women change makers from across the globe from 8.00 to 11:00 at the RDS in Dublin. The Symposium is based on the simple yet powerful premise that the changing role of women across all spectrums of life is having a real and positive influence on the future of society. We will share real stories from women that powerfully connect with the audience and, via media, throughout the world. Our speakers will focus on the challenges women face serving their families, their careers and their communities; and the challenges women face while helping to build flourishing and sustainable societies.
We very much hope you can join us and have asked our strategic advisor, Susan Davis, to follow up with your office (202 414 0777 or firstname.lastname@example.org). You may also contact her assistant, Sheridan Davis, at 202 414 0789, or email@example.com. Our World Meeting of Families Secretary General, Father Tim Bartlett, is available for discussion as well.
We would be honoured by your participation for this groundbreaking event, and look forward to your reply.
+ Diarmuid Martin
Archbishop of Dublin
President, World Meeting of Families 2018