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Bishop Erwin Kräutler.

ROME, October 9, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — A key organizer of the Amazonian Synod who favors a female diaconate for the region has said it may be the “first step” to ordaining women priests. 

In a scrum after Wednesday’s daily synod press briefing, Austrian-born Bishop Emeritus Erwin Kräutler of Xingu, Brazil, said that he supported the ordination of women. Asked by journalist Edward Pentin if that extended to women priests, Kräutler said “yes, logically,” and added that a female diaconate in the Amazon “may be a step to” achieving that goal.

“Many of the bishops [at the synod] are in favor of women deacons,” Kräutler asserted. 

As a missionary, Bishop Kräutler spent years in the Amazonian region defending the rights of indigenous people and was the principal author of the synod’s controversial working document [Instrumentum laboris].

The exchange with Edward Pentin was caught on video:

LifeSite sat down briefly with Bishop Kräutler as he was finishing post-press briefing interviews, to follow up on his thoughts on the Amazon synod as a “first step” to the ordination of women. Here is our exchange:

Diane Montagna: You spoke about the diaconate for women, given that the role of women is so important in the Amazon. You’re in favor of the priesthood for women.

Bishop Kräutler: Yes.

Will this be a beginning of a movement towardst this [a female priesthood] in the Synod, as you see it?

Maybe the ordination for women to be a deacon will be the first step. 

So, the ordination for women. How would that work, because Pope John Paul II wrote a document saying it can’t happen, and others have…

John Paul didn’t talk about deacons, only the presbyterate [priesthood].

But doesn’t the diaconate belong to the overall order of the priesthood. 

Yes. Of course. 

So, if a woman can’t become a priest, how can she become a deacon? Is this possible?

I guess it is possible. There were deacons in the first times of our Church – female deacons. 

But what kind… so you think this could be a beginning for ordaining women to the female priesthood. 

Exactly. I am convinced with that. 

Do you think the Holy Father agrees with you?

No one knows.

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