In response to the Leadership Conference of Women Religious statement regarding their commitment to dialogue, Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain, who is one of three bishops recently commissioned to oversee the LCWR, responded with the following statement:
The Holy See and the Bishops of the United States are deeply proud of the historic and continuing contribution of women religious to our country through social, pastoral and spiritual ministries; Catholic health care; Catholic education; and many other areas where they reach out to those on the margins of society.
As an association of women religious, the LCWR brings unique gifts to its members and to the Church at large. This uniqueness includes sensitivity to suffering, whether in Latin America or the inner-city; whether in the life of an unborn child or the victim of human trafficking.
Religious women have made a lasting contribution to the well-being of our country and continue to do so today. For that they deserve our respect, our support, our thanks and our prayers.
Along with the members of the LCWR, I remain committed to working to address the issues raised by the Doctrinal Assessment in an atmosphere of prayer and respectful dialogue. We must also work toward clearing up any misunderstandings, and I remain truly hopeful that we will work together without compromising Church teaching or the important role of the LCWR. I look forward to our continued discussions as we collaborate in promoting consecrated life in the United States.
Hmm… The sisters’ and bishops’ commitment to respectful dialogue coincides perfectly with today’s second reading from St. Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians:
All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling must be removed from you, along with all malice.
[And] be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ (4:31-32).
May the peace of Christ be with you all.