AUSTRALIAN Professor Tracey Rowland is among Pope Francis’ latest appointments to the International Theological Commission.
On September 23, the Vatican released the names of 30 theologians who will serve a five-year term on the commission. Women have served on the panel since 2004, but, until now, there have never been more than two.
Prof Rowland is dean of the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family in Melbourne and is a prominent authority on the theology of Pope Benedict XVI.
She has written “Ratzinger’s Faith: The Theology of Pope Benedict XVI”, released in 2008.
Born in Ipswich, Queensland, she was a boarder at St Brigid’s Convent, Rockhampton, and has two degrees in Theology – one from Cambridge and one from the Pontifical Lateran University in Rome.
Another of the women appointed to the commission is United States Mercy Sister Prudence Allen, who is former chair of the philosophy department at St John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver and now a member of the chaplaincy team at Lancaster University, England.
The International Theological Commission was established in 1969 to study important doctrinal issues as an aid to the pope and to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. It has produced documents in recent years on such topics as “Christian monotheism and its opposition to violence” and “sensus fidei in the life of the Church”.
Others appointed to serve on the commission until 2019 are: Dominican Father Serge-Thomas Bonino, France; Fr Terwase Henry Akaabiam, Nigeria; Sr Alenka Arko, of the Loyola Community, Russian Federation/Slovenia; Monsignor Antonio Luiz Catelan Ferreira, Brazil; Msgr Piero Coda, Italy; Fr Lajos Dolhai, Hungary; Jesuit Father Peter Dubovsky, Slovakia; Fr Mario Angel Flores Ramos, Mexico; Fr Carlos María Galli, Argentina; Fr Krzysztof Gozdz, Poland; Fr Gaby Alfred Hachem, Lebanon; Professor Thomas Kollamparampil, of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate, India; Fr Koffi Messan Laurent Kpogo, Togo; Fr Oswaldo Martinez Mendoza, Colombia; Professor Moira Mary McQueen, Canada; Fr Karl-Heinz Menke, Germany; Fr John Junyang Park, Korea; Jesuit Father Bernard Pottier, Belgium; Fr Javier Prades Lopez, Spain; Professor Héctor Gustavo Sanchez Rojas, of the Sodalitium of Christian Life, Peru; Professor Marianne Schlosser, Austria/Germany; Fr Nicholaus Segeja M’hela, Tanzania; Fr Pierangelo Sequeri, Italy; Fr Zeljko Tanjic, Croatia; Dominican Father Gerard Francisco P. Timoner III, Philippines; Jesuit Father Gabino Uribarri Bilbao, Spain; Fr Philippe Vallin, France; Capuchin Father Thomas G. Weinandy, USA.
CNS and Zenit