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We are Catholic Women Speak

Towards a deeper, richer understanding of the Catholic tradition

We are creating a space for open dialogue, theological exploration and collaboration among Catholic women in the worldwide Church.

We seek to bring Catholic women’s voices into dialogue with others in the Catholic Church, with those in other churches and religious traditions, and with wider society, in order to participate in a deeper, richer understanding of the Catholic tradition and its relevance for our times

We do not speak with one voice

We find great creativity by acknowledging and allowing our differences. We regard these as creative aspects of the process of learning and growing towards one another in faith.

Diversity is a strength
Meet our members

We speak as women, not as “Woman”

We resist any attempt to develop a theology of “Woman”. 

Find out why


A forum for dialogue

The purpose of the forum is to create an informed and honest space for dialogue around issues relevant to the lives of Catholic women in the Church and society.

Comments and contributions which are respectful, courteous and intelligent are welcome here.

Whatever your gender, you are welcome to join our conversation here.

Catholic Women Discuss the Charlie Gard Case

This Facebook discussion explores complex ethical questions about life support and end of life decisions, the relationship between health care and 'big pharma', and differences between attitudes to these issues in the US, Canada and

Catholic women discuss ‘What is Church?’

Hours of Louis de Laval, France ca. 1480 DEBORAH: I just want to ask if I have understood the following correctly. I understand that we are all the Church and that it is not

Catholic women discuss Marian devotions

JULIA: What are some of your thoughts on the traditional Marian devotions, especially May crowning? I think it's so gendered and Westernized. I don't think it's what the real Mary would have liked. I love Mary

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We are a global network

We are the voices of Catholic women from many different cultures, perspectives and walks of life, united by a shared belief that the Church will benefit from greater inclusion of women’s perspectives and theological insights in the interpretation of doctrine and the development of pastoral practice.
Find out how
We are an online community of nearly 3000 women


Join our conversation

Reflection on the Immaculate Conception

Mothers, Artists, and Pain: Moon River and the Feast of the Immaculate Conception Reflection from CWS member Jessica Mesman Griffith, originally published on My maternal grandfather was born on December 8, 1912, on

Advent Reflection – The Fourth Joy of Mary

Advent Reflection - The Fourth Joy of Mary: The Adoration of The Magi From

Advent Reflection – The Third Sorrow of Mary

The Third Sorrow of Mary: The Loss of the Child Jesus in the Temple.

Advent Reflection – The Third Joy of Mary

The Third Joy of Mary: The Birth of Christ Taken from a series of

How the Religious Right Prepares Women to be Victims of Rape Culture – Rebecca Bratten Weiss

Rebecca Bratten Weiss writes about sexism, abuse and politics in her latest article originally

Browse more articles here

News and events

CWS Member Jennifer Reek’s New Book

We are excited to share the news that CWS member Jennifer Reek's new book 'A Poetics of Church, Reading and Writing Sacred Spaces of Poetic Dwelling', published by Routledge is available now. Jennifer's book is structured

CWS Member Christine Schenk Book Launch

We are very proud to share the news that CWS member Christine Schenk has written a book detailing archaeological evidence for influential early Christian women, which will be released for sale on 15th December 2017.


The following statement was issued by the Catholic Women Speak Network on 26th September 2017: Rebecca Bratten Weiss is a member of Catholic Women Speak (CWS) – an international network of nearly 900 Catholic women

Browse more news items here

Men and women, young people and adults, communicate differently. They speak different languages and they act in different ways. Everyone has something to contribute, because they have their life experiences, they look at things from a different standpoint and they have their own concerns, abilities and insights. The unity that we seek is not uniformity, but a “unity in diversity”, or “reconciled diversity”.

 – Pope Francis,  Amoris Laetitiae – The Joy of Love

Catholic Women Speak – The book

Paulist Press (US)


Alban Books (UK)


The book

The Catholic Women Speak network’s first major project was to edit an anthology of Catholic women’s writings that was published to coincide with the opening of the October 2015 Synod on the Family. 300 copies of the book were made available free of charge to Synod participants and displayed on a table in the Synod Hall, and we understand that nearly of them were taken.


Review of Catholic Women Speak in Tui Motu InterIsland Magazine

Catholic Women Speak: Bringing our Gifts to the Table is, I believe, a significant contribution to the discussion around the role of women in the Catholic Church in the 21st century. It is not only well-researched, but is a lively and thought-provoking read. I thoroughly recommend it.

Daily Theology, ‘Review: Catholic Women Speak’

One of the strengths of the volume is the plurality of voices, which do not speak with a single, unified opinion on controversy. This is all the better, really, to reflect the complexity of women’s lives. I can easily see this book being valuable for pastors and pastoral associates, for parish book clubs, for academics to use in their classrooms when dealing with perennially hot-button topics.

Vox Nova, Jeannine Marie Pitas, Book Review: ‘Catholic Women Break Their Silence’:

For me, this book is a breath of fresh air. A thick wall of silence has been broken; masks have been removed. It is refreshing to see these forty-four women speak in such a courageous, vulnerable and self-revealing way. This book is a must-read for all who seek a better understanding of the real, lived experience of women in the Catholic Church today.

Read more reviews

Get involved with Catholic Women Speak today

Join a vibrant network of Catholic women who all support each other on their personal and spiritual journeys.

Join our online community

We welcome Catholic women to join our Facebook group to dialogue with us, and to support other Catholic women around the world working for a more inclusive Church.

Take part in our closed Facebook group

This private Facebook group is open to bona fide members who self-identify as Catholic women. It offers a secure and confidential forum for dialogue, awareness raising and theological engagement around issues of concern to women in the Church and society. If you wish to join in the conversation please contact us

Join a local group

Catholic Women Speak is a worldwide movement. Find out if there is a group in your area that you can join and support.

How to join a group

Even though we take full advantage of online communication, we know that this does not replace the value of meeting face to face in groups to support each other. Find out if there is a group near you for you to join.

Join our conversation

Whatever your gender, you are welcome to join our conversation here.

Join our forum

The purpose of the website is to create an informed and honest space for dialogue around issues relevant to the lives of Catholic women in the Church and society. Comments and contributions which are respectful, courteous and intelligent are welcome here.

Join online
Join local group
Go to forum
Sign up to our newsletter
Go to magazine

We are delighted to collaborate with L’Osservatore Romano in distributing the English translation of their Women Church World magazine through our website.

L’Osservatore Romano – Orthodox Women

Orthodox Women - November 2017 After the issue on Protestant women which followed the comparison with Jewish women and while we await an issue on Muslim women we look here at women belonging to

L’Osservatore Romano – Discernment

Discernment - September 2017 Discernment is a concept that has been frequently used in the Christian tradition since the most ancient times. It refers to the interior reflection which each human being is called to

L’Osservatore Romano – Rape as Torture

Rape as Torture - October 2017 At last the world’s attention and conscience is beginning to focus on the phenomenon of the continuous and systematic rape to which women and children migrants are

In collaboration with Catherine of Siena College

We work closely with the college which provides an online learning environment for the promotion of higher education in the fields of theology, religion, gender and social justice, intended particularly but not exclusively for women in the global South who would not otherwise have access to university education.

Both the Network and the College are administered by the University of Roehampton in London, under the umbrella of the Digby Stuart Research Centre for Religion, Society and Human Flourishing.