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Religious superiors laud new Vatican prefect’s irenic approach

Catholic World News - June 06, 2011

The heads of confederations of men and women religious are praising Archbishop João Bráz de Aviz, the new prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, for taking a more irenic approach than his predecessor, Cardinal Franc Rodé.

“Only after we've established a dialogue do we discuss issues and try to clear things up if there's a problem,” the archbishop told the Vatican newspaper. “This seems much more fruitful that simply going in with a prejudiced attitude.”

“The windows have been opened to fresh approaches,” said Sister Mary Lou Wirtz, president of the International Union of Superiors General, after meeting with the prefect and Archbishop Joseph Tobin, the Congregation’s secretary since 2010. “We really felt their eagerness to build bridges with religious men and women and to rebuild the trust--especially with the sisters in the United States following the visitation, and all the feelings that surrounded that and the way it happened.”

“From our point of view, this is a different approach,” said Salesian Father Pascual Chavez Villanueva, president of the Union of Superiors General. “The Congregation seems to understand that its role is one of collaboration, and not so much of confrontation.”

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Show 4 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: - Jun. 06, 2011 7:09 PM ET USA

    “The windows have been opened to fresh approaches,” So have the gag reflexes.“The Congregation seems to understand that its role is one of collaboration, and not so much of confrontation.” You can almost hear the knuckles rapping on the desktop. No, I am not reassured either.

  • Posted by: non-faithfulcatholicschools7869 - Jun. 06, 2011 11:16 AM ET USA

    There appears to be too much outright disinformation when it comes to Religious orders in the US. All one has to do is look at the Catholic School System and see just how far out in left field these so called "religious groups" have strayed. As stated before by Cornelius, I'm not reassured either.

  • Posted by: jdieterich616502 - Jun. 06, 2011 10:39 AM ET USA

    Taking a conversational, approach is in my opinion the charitable way to address issues. The question is not whether or not one side or the other is going to come in "predjudiced", but what the outcome is going to be. If they come to an agreement consistent with the teaching of the Church, that's a great thing. However, are those orders who are in heresy (or more) going to be open to the Church's guidance? Is the congregation going to put its foot down if they are not?

  • Posted by: Cornelius - Jun. 06, 2011 7:05 AM ET USA

    For some reason I'm not reassured.

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