HRC Blog

Message to Catholic Nuns: Be Not Afraid

Post submitted by Sharon Groves, former HRC Director, Religion and Faith Program

A recent New Way’s Ministry post has a clear message for nuns in the Catholic Church who have come under fire from the Vatican recently: be not afraid.

Last week, Church leadership lashed out against the Leadership Conference of Women Religious for a variety of matters, including for taking “a position not in agreement with the Church’s teaching on human sexuality.”

As New Way’s points out, this is an opportunity for women religious to respond in a fashion that highlights the true values and beliefs that are core to the Catholic faith:

Whenever the Vatican makes a strong statement against LGBT people, one of the most widespread reactions and responses from church people is to be afraid.  Yes, there are many who express anger and outrage, but many, many more respond quietly by silencing themselves, afraid that if they speak out that they, too, will experience the wrath of Church authorities.

Fear, however, is not the full story.  I believe that though church authorities might be instilling fear through their actions, there is another reality present in these situations.  I believe that when fear is present, God is calling us to courage.  Though it may seem that the LCWR has few options at this juncture (see the posting about canon law guiding this case), they do, in fact, have the option to respond courageously, relying on God’s power instead of the power of human beings–themselves or their oppressors.

Read the full entry.

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