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Nathalie Becquart, first woman to hold the post of Under-secretary of Synod

The Vatican has announced the appointment of Nathalie Becquart, a Frenchwoman, under-secretary of the Synod of Bishops. She thus becomes the first woman appointed to this post, which is in keeping with the pope’s determination to promote “greater participation of women” in ecclesial decision-making processes.

Pope Francis on Saturday appointed Nathalie Becquart as an under-secretary of the Synod of Bishops, the first woman to hold this post, the Vatican said.

A religious of the Xavières congregation, Nathalie Becquart has been a consultant to the synod, the assembly of bishops responsible for studying the major doctrinal questions of the Catholic Church since 2019.

Her appointment reflects the pope’s desire to promote “greater participation of women in ecclesial discernment and decision-making processes,” said the synod’s secretary-general, Cardinal Mario Grech, in an interview with the media.

Therefore, Nathalie Becquart also becomes the first woman to obtain the right to vote at the synod.

“During the last synods, the number of women who participated as experts or listeners increased. With the appointment of Sister Nathalie Becquart and her possibility of participating with the right to vote, a door has been opened,” added Cardinal Grech.

History of Nathalie Becquart

Born in Fontainebleau in 1969, Nathalie Becquart is a graduate of HEC, studied philosophy and theology at the Center Sèvres – Jesuit Faculties in Paris, as well as sociology at the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS).

According to the Vatican News website, she recently majored in ecclesiology at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry in the United States.

In France, she directed the National Service for the Evangelization of Youth and Vocations of the Conference of Bishops of France from 2012 to 2018.

Nathalie has published several essays, including “Religious, why? This life is worth it” and “Now is the right time – Five views of women on the crisis”.

The pope also appointed Spaniard Luis Marín de San Martín, a member of the Order of Saint Augustine, as under-secretary.

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