I see the LCWR has released a brief statement on being placed into receivership. I haven’t surfed other blogs much on this. Nor do I intend to. I’m going to single out an item for comment that seems to have some connections with the “Vatileaks” revelations and suggest that this investigation is likely more indicative of institutional flaws in the Vatican:

Board members concluded that the assessment was based on unsubstantiated accusations and the result of a flawed process that lacked transparency.

Given recent communcation methods in Rome, this can’t be discounted out of hand. In fact, it strikes me as plausible. Pope John Paul II was reportedly angry at some of the “Temple Police” sources feeding him misinformation in the 80’s.

Cardinal Levada has some explaining to do, I’d say.

One person who featured prominently in last week’s ouster of Ettore Gotti Tedeschi from the Institute for Works of Religion is Supreme Knight Carl Anderson. He hasn’t been solidly stuck with billing for the Cardinal Rodé affair, but it might be fair to wonder. It also goes to show that you don’t need to be ordained to behave badly in the Church. Not that Mr Anderson has been shown to behave badly. Not at all. But it hasn’t been demonstrated that women religious have been behaving badly either. Much of the Catholic laity doesn’t seem to be buying it. I know I’m still squarely in Camp Skepticism on this one.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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5 Responses to Unsubstantiated

  1. John Drake says:

    Why do you contribute to the distortion on this matter? I don’t recall “behaving badly” as the reason for the call for the reform of the LCWR. Sponsoring dissident speakers at its Assemblies, outright dissent from Church teaching on male-only ordination and such issues ARE the reasons. Perhaps, on second thought, that IS “behaving badly”. If so, they have been.

    This sentence tells the tale: “As an entity approved by the Holy See for the coordination and support of religious Communities in the United States, LCWR also has a positive responsibility for the promotion of the faith and for providing its member Communities and the wider Catholic public.”

  2. Jimmy Mac says:

    More Catholics should behave so “badly” as do these sisters. Kowtowing to every male clerical diktat is not the same as “promotion of the faith.”

    Without these women and the influence they have had over generations of students and other Catholics, there would be no “faith” in this country.

  3. FrMichael says:

    “…unsubstantiated allegations…” ?

    Simple Google searches bring up most of what the CDF alleges with respect to the LCWR. This complaint makes it sound like the Vatican was making stuff up.

    Much better is Sr. Farley’s response to her CDF censure: So what if I’m a Catholic theologian writing a book on sexual ethics? Where did I ever write that my book was primarily sourced from Sacred Scripture and Tradition? This is the late 20th century, man, get a clue! We’re all into personal experience now, who cares what God thought about the subject back in the antediluvian age of Jesus and the Bible, much less 1950…

    Both LCWR and Sr. Farley don’t have a clue about what their true mission in the Church is supposed to be in preserving and disseminating Truth, but at least Sr. Farley doesn’t create a red herring.

    • Liam says:

      I believe Todd is using “substantiated” more technically than you are, Father. The Doctrinal Assessment as published is more of an extended executive summary rather than a detailed substantiation of citations to specific instances so that the rest of the faithful can see how accurate the characterizations of the instance is or is not. (I realized there are many who would say that is not the faithful’s job, but it’s relevant to the issue of what substantiation means in this context.)

  4. Todd says:

    “Both LCWR and Sr. Farley don’t have a clue about what their true mission in the Church is supposed to be in preserving and disseminating Truth …”

    In Professor Farley’s case, she is a retired theologian teaching at an ecumenical institution, not a Catholic seminary. I haven’t read much more than the headlines in that story, but I imagine that with the inevitable rise in book sales, she and her order are likely set for retirement now.

    As for the LCWR, their mission is pretty clear. It is a body of the institutional bureaucracy, intended to facilitate communication between Rome and American women religious. I don’t believe it conducts itself in any way connected with apostolic ministry in the larger Church. That would be the charisms of orders and their individual members.

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