Monday, April 23, 2012

"Doctrinal Assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious"

On Friday, April 20, the Bucks County Courier Times published a piece by Rachell Zoll of the Associated Press, concerning the Vatican's Doctrinal Assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious
Excerpts from the Vatican's assessment....
  • "The Holy See acknowledges with gratitude the great contribution of women Religious to the Church in the United States as seen particularly in the many schools, hospitals, and institutions of support for the poor which have been founded and staffed by Religious over the years....
  • "The current doctrinal Assessment arises out of a sincere concern for the life of faith in some Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life. It arises as well from a conviction that the work of any conference of major superiors of women Religious can and should be a fruitful means of addressing the contemporary situation and supporting religious life in its most 'radical' sense—that is, in the faith in which it is rooted....
  • "Addresses given during LCWR annual Assemblies manifest problematic statements and serious theological, even doctrinal errors....[Cited] as an example [was] specific passages of Sr. Laurie Brink’s address about some Religious 'moving beyond the Church' or even beyond Jesus.  This is a challenge not only to core Catholic beliefs; such a rejection of faith is also a serious source of scandal and is incompatible with religious life. Such unacceptable positions routinely go unchallenged by the LCWR....Some might see in Sr. Brink’s analysis a phenomenological snapshot of religious life  today. But Pastors of the Church should also see in it a cry for help....
  • "while there has been a great deal of work on the part of LCWR promoting issues of social justice in harmony with the Church’s social doctrine, it is silent on the right to life from conception to natural death....issues of crucial importance to the life of Church and society, such as the Church’s Biblical view of family life and human sexuality, are not part of the LCWR agenda in a way that promotes Church teaching....
  • "The Second Vatican Council clearly indicates that an authentic teaching of the Church calls for the religious submission of intellect and will, and is not limited to defined dogmas or ex cathedra statements (cf. Lumen gentium, 25)....
 Among the corrections....
  • "greater emphasis needs to be placed both on the relationship of the LCWR with the Conference of Bishops, and on the need to provide a sound doctrinal foundation in the faith of the Church"
  • "The Eucharist & the Liturgy of the Hours will have a place of priority in LCWR events & programs....
  • [There is a need to] "review LCWR links with affiliated organizations, e.g. Network and Resource Center for Religious Life. 
As reported by,
  • “'I’m stunned,' said Sister Simone Campbell, executive director of Network. 'I would imagine that it was our health care letter that made them mad,' Sister Campbell said. 'We haven’t violated any teaching, we have just been raising questions and interpreting politics.'”
(This thought is NOT original:) Sister Simone Campbell appears to be an excellent candidate for the Captain Louis Renault award for feigned shock (Click the below image).

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