Catholic Culture Overview
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Amid Vatican investigations, cardinal 'affirms' members of Leadership Conference of Women Religious

October 05, 2009

Amid two Vatican investigations of American women religious-- an apostolic visitation of active women’s religious communities, and a Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith investigation into the orthodoxy of the annual conferences of Leadership Conference of Women Religious-- Cardinal Seán O’Malley of Boston has sent a “letter of affirmation” to the members of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious on behalf of the US bishops’ committee on clergy, consecrated life and vocations.

After praising Women & Spirit (a museum exhibit devoted to the contributions of women religious to American life), the cardinal adds:

Allow me also, both personally and on behalf of Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, to thank you for having responded to the call to religious life. The Church is grateful for all that your communities have done, and continue to do, to advance the mission of the Church, especially in the areas of health care, education, social services and pastoral ministry, as are highlighted in the exhibit.

I share with you the recognition that recent years have been a challenging time for religious communities. Our founders endured many challenges and obstacles with a zeal that inspired their prayer and work. The Church needs your gifts of perseverance, commitment and fidelity, and your unique charism, as guided by the Holy Spirit. Please know that your ministry is greatly valued. Together let us go forward with the work of building up the Kingdom of God.


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