Tuesday, 22 December 2009

A "vertibable chasm between two groups of women religious..."

From Sr. Elizabeth McDonough, OP, JCD, STL (I once heard her give a talk in Youngstown -- a good speaker!), from the Stonehill conference:

"...those of us who are religious might have to admit we are not so much renewed as we would like to think. We might also have to admit that religious life in the USA has hardly experienced the renewal some may try to claim. A 20/20 perspective (whether in hindsight or in forty years of endurance) reveals a visible, veritable chasm between two groups of women religious in the USA. On one side of this chasm are those who have apparently, randomly or deliberately, trod a circuitous path of unchecked adaptation leading to the brink of imminent extinction. On the other side are those who have apparently carefully walked a straight road of studiously maintaining a very respectable status quo ante. The latter are not likely to disappear. Not merely because this form of life is genuinely attractive to the new generation of youth, but also because in every transition from one dominant form of religious life to another (monasticism, mendicants, apostolic congregations, etc.) the prior form did not simply disappear, because it still had something significant to offer to the great diversity of the truly universal (truly) Catholic Church. But, the thousands of non-progressive sisters caught in progressive communities with no opportunity to live the renewal asked of them must be acknowledged as both a personal and an ecclesial tragedy of immense proportion."

No comments: