RELIGION

The Vatican Has An Abysmal Track Record Of Hiring Female Employees

Pope John Paul II is greeted by Sister Enrica Rosanna, of the Salesian order, in this 2002 photo made available by the Vatica
Pope John Paul II is greeted by Sister Enrica Rosanna, of the Salesian order, in this 2002 photo made available by the Vatican, Saturday, April 24, 2004. Sister Rosanna, 65, has been named by the pope undersecretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, the highest position ever held by a woman in the Roman Catholic Church. At center is Belgian Cardinal Jan Pieter Schotte. (AP Photo/Osservatore Romano)

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican has always been a heavily male bureaucracy, and statistics released on the eve of International Women's Day now back that up.

As of last year, only 18 percent of Holy See employees were women, up from 17 percent four years ago.

In the separately administered Vatican City State — which runs the Vatican Museums, the Vatican supermarket, pharmacy and tax-free department store — there has been a more marked increase, according to statistics released Friday. In 2004, 13 percent of personnel were women, rising to 19 percent in 2014.

Francis has pledged to name more women to higher-ranking governance jobs in the Vatican, though he has ruled out naming a woman to head a congregation. Currently, only two women hold the rank of undersecretary.

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