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Safeguarding the Consecrated Life

A very thoughtful response to the Leadership Conference of Women Religious’  doctrinal assessment by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith comes from Mother Mary Assumpta Long, OP. Mother asks:  Why spend three years assessing the state of the LCWR and then subsequently mandate a five-year plan of change going forward?

Answer: It is the Church’s responsibility, assumed in love, to safeguard the beauty and gift of consecrated life at all times. This responsibility is most acute when the integrity of consecrated life begins to diminish, evidenced in this case by clear examples of dissent from the hierarchy and lack of authentic ecclesial communion. The CDF hopes that, through this mandate, members of the LCWR will awaken to once again “think with the Church.”

Read all entire article and the background behind Mother’s assessment at the National Catholic Register website.

Pope John Paul II wrote: Its universal presence and the evangelical nature of its witness are clear evidence — if any were needed — that the consecrated life is not something isolated and marginal, but a reality which affects the whole Church. … In effect, the consecrated life is at the very heart of the Church as a decisive element for her mission (Vita Consecrata, 36).