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The sisters: two views


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After the April announcement that the Vatican was taking the Leadership Conference of Women Religious into a form of ecclesiastical receivership, appointing Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain to oversee the LCWR until its statutes and program are reformed, Tom Fox, a major figure at the National Catholic Reporter for decades, had this to say:

"Some of our bishops are acting like bullies, abusing the authority of their offices in the name of enforcing orthodoxy.

"Dealing with U.S. women religious, these bishops' actions appear governed more by a desire to enforce obedience than to develop fidelity in our sisters...

"What the bully bishops claim to be matters of orthodoxy are really matters of pastoral style. They are the results of an unwillingness among our bishops to enter into sincere and mutually respectful dialogue with the women. None of the issues at hand has anything to do with the Creed. They stem from the actions of a small group of misdirected and fearful men determined to take 'catholic' out of 'Catholic' while judging, silencing and demeaning those who stand in their way...''

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