Mutuae Relationes 27: Poverty and Service to the Poor

SenanquecloisterOne of the three pillars of religious life is poverty. Here the Church reminds religious communities of the importance of that in context of the other evangelical counsels. The aim is a life of Christian perfection. We don’t achieve perfection on our own, even in the community of the Church. But with God’s help we can be on the way.

27. In promoting ongoing formation of religious, it is necessary to insist on the renewal of the witness of poverty and of service to the most needy and to bring about, furthermore, that through a renewed spirit of obedience and chastity communities become signs of (filial) love and unity.

In institutes of active life, for which the apostolate constitutes an essential element of their religious life (cf. Christus Donimus 12; 15; 35, 2; Lumen Gentium 25; 45), as both initial and ongoing formation progress, the apostolate itself should be duly emphasized.

It strikes me that part of the recent kerfuffle over American women religious involve the witness to poverty and service to the needy as something emphasized while the political realm is thought to be minimized. It would seem women religious in this country are on the right track where DPPL 27 is concerned, and perhaps the CDF and the USCCB not so much.

Clearly, the witness of poverty and service is drawn out for special attention here.

Thoughts or comments? You can check the full document online here.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in bishops, Mutuae Relationes, women religious. Bookmark the permalink.

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