Zusammenfassung / Summary
Is it possible to consider the diaconate of women as a sacrament without addressing the question of women’s admission to the ordination as a priest and bishop? Male and female theologians who answer this question in the affirmative declare that though there is only one sacrament of Holy Orders, its forms (i.e. its three degrees the episcopate, the presbyterate and the diaconate) can vary and even lead to the creation of a diaconate of women. The counter thesis asserts the sacramentality of the unity and the three degrees of ordination. Both sides refer to the same documents of the Second Vatican Council. This is why this treatise looks back on the history of the definition of the relation between the episcopate, the presbyterate and the diaconate in order to show that the Fathers of Vatican II once and for all have settled a question which had remained unresolved for centuries: The sacramental representation of Christ’s going ahead of the Church is realized in the three ministries of the bishop, the priest and the deacon. If women are not admitted to episcopal and priestly ordination, then they are neither admitted to the diaconate being a sacrament of Holy Orders.