The National Catholic Fishwrap, pipe for the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR – a subsidiary of the Magisterium of Nuns) continues lapdog-like in its tail-wagging support of dissident women religious. A case in point:
Former LCWR leader gives take on Vatican order
Among those still trying to understand the implications of the Vatican order as the LCWR board meets this week is Mercy Sr. Theresa Kane.
A former LCWR leader, Kane made headlines across the world when she welcomed Pope John Paul II to the United States in 1979 and pointedly asked [interesting verb choice] him about the possibility of ordaining women to the priesthood. [What a gal!]
Kane, now an associate professor at Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., first spoke to NCR about the Vatican order in a wide-ranging, half-hour-long phone conversation in early May.
Among her reflections then were her initial thoughts on hearing news of the Vatican’s move, how she sees it fitting into the larger history between the Vatican and U.S. women religious, and what advice she has for the current LCWR leadership.
Following is that conversation, edited for clarity and length.
At this point, what do you think about the idea of LCWR letting go of its canonical recognition and just becoming a voluntary organization?
I think there’s some wisdom to looking at the question. The reason I would be uncomfortable with the direction is it’s like giving up the power that we have. And I don’t really want to do that. [Not when your goal is power, no. Besides, disbanding and reforming without the approval of the Holy See would make you irrelevant.] I don’t think we have a reason to not be pontifical, to not be officially and canonically Catholic. [I don’t think we have a reason not to be… hmmm.]
But at the same time, if we were to really do a discernment on this to decide if it’s more harmful to continue as a pontifical organization or not, we may say it is — that it’s taking too much energy, its taking too much time, or we’re misdirecting our energies from the service of people. [That’s one way to justify it.]
I wouldn’t not want to look at it, but I don’t find myself saying that should be our position because I think there are forces in the Vatican and the hierarchy that would be happy if we did it. I really do. [And I think you are deluded. They would much rather have such a group functioning well and properly. But that is NOT what the state of the question reveals in the case of the LCWR.]
It’s almost like you’re saying that if you go noncanonical, you remove yourself as the thorn in the Vatican’s side.
That’s correct. That’s absolutely right. And I think that we do give up the power that we’ve had.
I’ve been in LCWR since 1970. So I’m in the organization 40 years. I’m not sure that I want it to go that quickly. I really don’t. They actually could have taken it away if they wanted to. After five years, that may be part of their plan. But who knows? [blah blah blah] Between now and then there’s much of divine intervention and divine providence that can come along.
As Sister continues to struggle to understand what is going on and to remain relevant, let me remind you of the paragraph we had about her in the post Nuns Gone Wild: A Trip Down Memory Lane:
Theresa Kane: as president of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) in 1979, she greeted Pope John Paul II at the National Shrine in Washington, D.C. In her address she urged him to open all ministries of Church life to women. Her remarks made headlines around the world. Shortly after her address, she stated that “as a result of the greeting, a few congregations withdrew from the conference. Through that experience LCWR became more public; the membership gained new responsibilities.” Today she supports women in deciding to undergo fake ordinations of women in the Catholic Church as if they were real. “The Roman Catholic women priesthood is small, highly criticized, and not going away,” she went on. “No one controls our future but ourselves.”
Ain’t she a peach?