Onward Christian socialjusticewarriors


The nuns are still fighting back. Heidi Hall at RNS reports:

Sister Elizabeth Johnson, a theology professor at Fordham University, accepted the Leadership Conference of Women Religious’ top award and then lambasted bishops for criticism of her book “Quest for the Living God,” saying it appears they’ve never read it.

“To this day, no one, not myself or the theological community, the media or the general public knows what doctrinal issue is at stake,” she told the Nashville assembly of about about 900 sisters representing 80 percent of the nation’s nuns.

Omigod a room full of radical feminist nuns listening to a radical feminist nun. Be afraid.

In her 20-minute acceptance speech, followed by a standing ovation, Johnson suggested the conference’s support of her work prompted the investigation by the church’s top enforcer of orthodoxy, the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith.

Johnson’s book includes chapters on black and feminist theology and interfaith engagement. She said book sales skyrocketed after the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops criticized it.

Yeah. Anything the USCCB doesn’t like is bound to be good.

The LCWR has been undergoing a Vatican-ordered doctrinal investigation since 2009. In 2012, the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith ordered nun’s group to reform its statutes and appointed Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain to oversee changes, including a rewrite of the group’s charter and approval of all speakers at future assemblies.

In April, a top Vatican official warned the LCWR that in recognizing Johnson it would provoke the Holy See.

This from the band of brothers that has been covering up and protecting child-rape for decades, in fact probably centuries. What on earth gives them the idea that they have moral (or “spiritual”) authority over anyone?

It’s unlikely the sides can come to a solution, said Bruce Morrill, a Vanderbilt University professor of theological studies and a Jesuit priest.

At the conflict’s heart is a difference in approach to hierarchical chain of command: the top-down, morals-emphasizing Vatican versus the collegial, social-justice oriented nuns.

“As far as the U.S. bishops and Vatican officials are concerned, this is not a debate,” Morrill said. “The hierarchy expects the women religious to obey their directives.”

The nuns are social justice warriors!

 

Comments

  1. quixote says

    “As far as the U.S. bishops and Vatican officials are concerned, this is not a debate,” Morrill said. “The hierarchy expects the women religious to obey their directives.”

    I seem to remember that the guy they are supposed to be following pointed out that the meek shall inherit the earth. The nuns with their social justice and their collegiality are going to prove him right again.

  2. sqlrob says

    This from the band of brothers that has been covering up and protecting child-rape for decades, in fact probably centuries.

    From a video that’s been posted to FTB before, millenia. Started somewhere in the first or second century, if not earlier.

  3. steve oberski says

    What on earth gives them the idea that they have moral (or “spiritual”) authority over anyone?

    The moral and financial support of “moderate” Catholics who claim to disagree with the RCC on every significant social issue such as birth control, abortion, end of life choices, equal treatment under the law for women and homosexuals but continue to give these evil fucks their money and support.

    You know, those “cultural” Catholics who still want their children baptised in the church and married in the church and want their ageing parents buried in the church and continue to send their children to catholic schools and continue to support catholic controlled hospitals, adoption agencies and social support organizations.

    Which in my mind makes the moderate Catholics even worse than the hard line, bigoted, misogynistic and homophobic Catholics who at least honestly state their position and are not afraid to be seen for the anti-human scumbags that they are.

  4. John Morales says

    Ophelia and steve oberski @6, what gives them the idea is the religious vows of obedience the nuns had to undertake to be accepted as such by the Church.

  5. Al Dente says

    The Vatican’s objection is the nuns are more concerned about poverty and discrimination while not caring about same sex marriage and contraception. The nerve of those nuns, actually giving a damn about real people instead of what makes Baby Jesus cry.

  6. John Morales says

    Al Dente @8, ironically, Pope Francis’ PR makes much of his focus on poverty and inequality.

  7. sqlrob says

    And it’s on VIDEO??

    Well, no :-P. It was a video that went over various sources. I wish I had it bookmarked somewhere so I could post it.

  8. steve oberski says

    @John Morale

    That may give them cause to think that they have authority over the nuns, but that hardly translates to authority over the laity.

    Which reminds me of that most likely apocryphal statement attributed to a RCC bishop:

    The role of the laity is to pay, pray and obey.

  9. John Morales says

    steve oberski @11, alas, those who identify as Catholics within the communion of the Church of Rome are also supposedly bound by Canon Law.

    (Or: they supposedly have authority over all professing Catholics, and those who deny that are perforce heretical. This was put to good use, back in the day when the Church had more direct temporal agency)

  10. Shari says

    @11 – “That was no laity, that was my w…” Oh. Sigh. Never mind. Been waiting 20 years to quote Dorothy Parker on that subject…

    The nuns are about 50+ yrs overdue on being heard on this. They take their vows thinking to seve man – and woman – kind, through good works in the church. I think the next major reforms will have a sisterhood at the heart of it, and I am hoping it will indeed be changes for the betterment of the church.

  11. geocatherder says

    The nuns have been fighting this battle for a long time. The ones who taught me first through 12th grades were definitely social justice warriors, but that was back in the 1960s and 1970s. But the church was filled with social justice warriors then. They mostly seem to have left or died off, except for the nuns. The nuns carry on the tradition.

    Religious people tend to be pretty big on obedience, and nuns tend to have very informed consciences. When it seems that obedience to their deity and obedience to their religious hierarchy are in conflict, a lot of them are compelled to choose the former. This makes the Men In Dresses apoplectic, of course. They like their privilege.

    I told the church what it might do with itself ages ago, but I still root for the nuns. We can’t agree on some fundamental things, but they get a lot right. They get a lot more right than the Menz.

  12. says

    @geocatherder

    Could you please quit with the “men in dresses” thing? It implies A) there’s something wrong with dresses B) something contemptible about people who wear them C) something at the very least ridiculous about men (or those assigned male at birth) wearing them in particular.

  13. Pierce R. Butler says

    “To this day, no one, not myself or the theological community, the media or the general public knows what doctrinal issue is at stake,” she told the Nashville assembly …

    And we are here as on a darkling plain

    Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,

    Where ignorant armies clash by night. …

    … a top Vatican official warned the LCWR that in recognizing Johnson it would provoke the Holy See.

    They can’t claim they did not expect the Roman Inquisition!

  14. says

    Many people assume I left the Catholic church because of the child rape bullshit. I didn’t – I left because of thisbullshit. For the record, many of us who are/were Catholic have known about the child rape problem long before it became mainstream, since the 80s. It was thought that the Church could be changed from within, but the election of Joey the Rat blew that hope up and left a crater behind. The inquisition of the nuns – and don’t fool yourself, that’s exactly what it is – was the last straw for me. I had convinced myself that the Church could be changed from within on the subject of women as equals; this proved me wrong. Francis is making many people happy, he’s saying a lot of the right words on child rape. But nobody should expect any actual change, and he has made numerous statements that indicate the Church will never accept women as equals.

  15. geocatherder says

    @Ibis3, thanks. I wasn’t thinking. Growing up, a priest wearing all his vestments always reminded me of one of those Elizabethan paintings, where there’s a woman inside all that fabric somewhere — but you have to look hard to find her. I needed to be reminded that my experience is not universal.

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