Pope Francis Supports Nun Crackdown, Quashing Hope for a Kinder, Gentler Pope


This week the Vatican confirmed that Pope Francis supports an ongoing crackdown on the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), a group that represents about 80 percent of nuns in the United States.

A year ago, under the leadership of Pope Benedict, the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith issued a report accusing the nuns of “radical feminism” for focusing on social justice rather than spending that time condemning abortion. From the report:

The documentation reveals that, while there has been a great deal of work on the part of LCWR promoting issues of social justice in harmony with the Church’s social doctrine, it is silent on the right to life from conception to natural death, a question that is part of the lively public debate about abortion and euthanasia in the United States. Further, issues of crucial importance to the life of Church and society, such as the Church’s Biblical view of family life and human sexuality, are not part of the LCWR agenda in a way that promotes Church teaching. Moreover, occasional public statements by the LCWR that disagree with or challenge positions taken by the Bishops, who are the Church’s authentic teachers of faith and morals, are not compatible with its purpose.

In response to the report, several male Vatican officials were tasked with imposing a program of reform upon the nuns. This Monday, Archbishop Gerhard Mueller met with the nuns, saying he had discussed the matter with the new pope, who agreed with the findings of the report and to continuing the reform.

“We expected Pope Francis to dismiss the mandate against the nuns but instead he broke the hearts of Catholics everywhere,” Erin Hanna, executive director of the Women’s Ordination Conference, told RH Reality Check. Hanna is also spokesperson for NunJustice.org, a coalition of Catholic groups calling for an end to the nun crackdown.

Hanna referenced St. Francis, who the new pope chose as his namesake. “St. Francis worked collaboratively alongside his sisters rather than against them. We pray Pope Francis will do the same,” she said.

Last year, vigils in solidarity with the nuns took place in cities including Cincinnati, Seattle, and New York, and more than 64,000 people signed a Change.org petition asking the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith to withdraw the campaign against the nuns.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

    Pathetic rebellious nuns USA

    Until recently he was worried about the news from the U.S. about their faith. Some 60,000, according to the press said, facing the Vatican, postulating be ordained as priests, blessing the marriage of sodomites and gomorritas, comprehensive abortion, supporters of liberation theology, Obama enthusiasts … Today I stopped worrying and I spent indignation to pity.
    That’s not an army ready to face the Vatican but a pathetic group of old geezers who refuse to recognize that their time has passed and you are the last of some congregations that they themselves were responsible for killing. Surely witted mostly cajoled by four activists left and are now no longer your only alternative because horizon is disappearing very quickly. Looking at those who might attend your meetings, if these were and they would not attend!, LCWR is not a problem, is a haven.
    Ved photographs of these eyesores and stop worrying about what I thought was a problem. And the song-protest as freak.

    • goatini

      “pathetic group of old geezers”

      Want to see the REAL ugly face of so-called “Pro-life”? There it is. Single-cell fertilized eggs are sacred, devoted and dedicated women religious not so much.

      • HeilMary1

        He’s practicing fetal idolatry.

    • HeilMary1

      Bigot, google intersex syndromes to get a clue why your pedophile heresy cult is wrong on LGBT human rights.

    • colleen2

      hey asshole, why do you care what they look like. Or do you, like most scumbag conservative men, judge women strictly on how much you want to fuck them?

  • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

    Francisco Fernández de la Cigoña an expert Spanish nuns crisis has given them this advice: less Enneagram, and exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. Less yoga, and more glorious liturgies. Less read the Bhagavad Gita, and more Bible. Less transcendental meditation, and more Kempis.

    • http://twitter.com/lifepostepic Cade DeBois

      I’m going to be as polite as possible here, but you are deluded, sir. Ennegrams and yoga? No, sir. NO. I not only studied Catholic theology for several years at a Catholic university, I worked at a seminary and I knew and worked with several nuns from different orders. These nuns work TIRELESSLY here in the US, helping the poor, the needy, the sick. You know, what JESUS SAID TO DO. Jesus did not say “spend church money, time and energy on fancy liturgies and special chapels to lock yourselves away praying to a wafer”. He sooooooo did not say that. Go read the Gospels, FOR ONCE! He said to get out in the world and do good work in his name. And if you do not know that this is what these nuns are doing, have been doing and have always been doing, but instead have been listening to the vile, vicious slander that paints them as these silly cartoons for conservatives to sneer at smugly and sanctimoniously, then you are perpetuating a lie. You are bearing false witness and you need to get yourself to Confession fast. Because according to Catholic theology, when you falsely accuse someone of something, you are committing a sin as grave as your accusation. So if you are accusing these nuns of wasting away their vocation on self-centered activities, then, sir, that’s the gravity of the sinfulness in YOUR lie for which YOU need repent. Until then, GET THEE BEHIND ME, SATAN.

      • HeilMary1

        He’s a pompous fascist, misogynist GOP troll who hates the poor and any acts of real charity.

        • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

          I am spanish, not republican.

          • HeilMary1

            Then you are a Franco fascist fan of Republicans.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1098741283 Kristy Cole

      I really have no idea what you are saying. Sorry.

      • HeilMary1

        Neither does he!

    • HeilMary1

      The nuns are being condemned for living in REALITY. You go back to your anti-christ, anti-human rights fascist fantasy delusions of “salvation”. while us sensible realists tackle real life issues.

  • http://twitter.com/whichcrafty Lynnsey

    How dare those uppity sisters be too busy doing things Jesus actually said to do to worry about other people’s sex lives!

  • http://twitter.com/lifepostepic Cade DeBois

    He’s a Jesuit. This is what Jesuits do. They are intolerant bigots. This, after all, is the order that was co-founded by a man who thought non-Europeans were going to hell unless they were baptized, an attitude that fueled centuries of Jesuit-endorsed colonialism, racism, abuse and oppression of native peoples in every corner of the world, especially in South American where this Italian-Argentine is from. And the Jesuits haven’t changed. I am not sure why anyone seriously thought he’d be gentler or kinder then a guy who thought victims of preist sexual abuse were annoying gnats to be swatted away. He’s a Jesuit. He’s been trained to percieve other human beings as sinful things he most morally condemn, berate and beat into submission.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1098741283 Kristy Cole

      I really didn’t know what a “Jesuit” was until a few weeks ago when I researched it as it has come up a lot lately. As usual, I wasn’t surprised to find out that it is yet another religious sect that thinks women are property to be treated like breeding stock. I had some Catholic friends who suggested the new Pope was going to stand up for poor people, well, I suppose the definition of “people” is perhaps not clear here. I never had hope with this one, so no more disappointed than I usually am with religious leaders.

    • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

      San Ignacio de Loyola is right. Some people think that believing in Christ as the only way to be saved is arrogant, narrow minded, and intolerant. But when it comes to Christianity, which states that Jesus is the only way to salvation, pluralism is wrong. In reality, pluralism is just as exclusive as Christianity because it excludes anyone who believes in a single path to God. Therefore, pluralism contradicts itself by admitting that some religions are false. Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (John 14:6).
      Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12).

      • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

        Pope Urban VIII who, at the request of the Jesuits of Paraguay, issued the Bull Commissum Nobis (1639). The Pope reiterated the teachings of Sublimis Deus, listed the unjust actions that are condemned and confirmed the penalty of a reserved latae sententiae excommunication. Urban, aware of the opposition to the pontifical teaching on slavery, warned that the penalty would fall on “all who would give counsel, aid, favour and help of any kind and under any pretext or who preach or teach such acts are legitimate and all others who dare or presume to cooperate.” He recognised also the source of the resistance and made a point of including the various jesuits. The Jesuits in Paraguay and Brazil defended the Indians but were themselves attacked by slaveholders and expelled for publishing the Bull. This action undoubtedly intimidated other well-disposed clergy.

        • HeilMary1

          And other popes supported slavery, torture and genocide of “heretics” and feminist “witches”.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            Heilmary, what the hell are you talking about? Heilmary, what the hell are you talking about? Do me a favor and read Jenny Gibbons: _maleficarum.htm

          • goatini

            The same Jenny Gibbons whose writings are recommended by Satanists? Of course, I think the whole organized religion thing is nonsense, but ironic that an RCC apologist agrees with Satanists.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            Jenny Gibbons is not satanist, she is wiccan.

          • goatini

            I said “recommended by Satanists”, which they are.

          • HeilMary1

            LOL! — Is there a difference?

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            Philip II of Spain forbade (1589) the taking of slaves “whether by just or unjust war” in the Philippines. Pope Gregory XIV gave his support with the Bull Cum Sicuti (1591) where he noted that although the philippines were “very fierce and many took up arms” in self defence, nonetheless, “much harm was done” them, and restitution, under pain of excommunication, must be made.

          • HeilMary1

            Pius IX supported our slave-owning Confederacy and hid one of Lincoln’s assassination conspirators in his Swiss Guard.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            Only the fundamentalists believen lies of Charles Chiniquy.

      • HeilMary1

        People who experience NDEs have refuted that nonsense.

        • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

          On many occasions the clergy spoke with authority to prohibit the witch persecutions. Among them, Pontiffs and Catholic saints, San Agobard, Archbishop of Lyon (who wrote “Against vulgi insulsam opinionem of grandine et tonitruis” (against the foolish beliefs of people about hail and lightning) (PL, CIV, 147). 936: Pope Leo VII wrote to Archbishop Gerhard forcing you to instruct local authorities not to execute those accused of witchcraft. in his letter made ​​specific reference to the fact that the new law under Christianity mercy sent while pagan law had ordered the death. Pope Gregory VII in 1080 wrote to King Harold of Denmark forbidding witches were sentenced to death.

          • HeilMary1

            And other popes supported genocide. Cardinal Montini (aka Paul VI of mother-killing Humana Vitae infamy) funded Nazi Catholic Croatian Ustasha death camps to punish 1 million non-Catholic Serb Christians with torture and death for not being born Catholic. Even after they were filmed being force-converted, they were still slaughtered so they couldn’t “change their minds”. And German Catholics were ordered by the Vatican to vote for anti-abortion Catholic Hitler.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            “The fertility of the Slavs is undesirable. They may use contraceptives or practice abortion, the more the better. Education is dangerous. It is enough that can count to 100. In the best case is admissible us an education that produces useful servants. Every educated person is a future enemy. “(Excerpt from a letter to Adolf Hitler by his personal secretary, Martin Bormann, from Ukraine in the summer of 1942)

            “In view of the large families of the native population, only we can fulfill that girls and women have so many abortions as possible.” (Adolf Hitler, in response to the letter from Bormann from Ukraine.’s Abortion was used as a active method of controlling the population in the territories occupied by the Nazis, promoting campaigns under the slogan “auswahl-freiheit”, ie, “freedom of choice”)

            “All propaganda media, especially the press, radio and films, as well as pamphlets, brochures and conferences should be used to instill in the Russian population the idea that it is harmful to have several children. We must stress that cause expenditures children, the good things that people might have had with the money spent on them. They could also allude to the dangerous effects of giving birth in women’s health. Parallel to this kind of propaganda, large-scale campaign will be launched in favor of contraception. A contraceptive industry should be established. Neither the circulation and sale of contraceptives nor abortions should be prosecuted. Even be necessary to open special institutions for abortion, and to train midwives and nurses for this purpose. The population will practice abortion very willingly if these institutions are run competently. “(Written Memorandum April 27, 1943 by Erhard Wetzel, manager Nazi regime’s racial occupied eastern Europe).

          • goatini

            (1) Ms Sanger abhorred Hitler and his regime and (2) Hitler criminalized safe, legal pregnancy termination for female German nationals, so keep on posting your garbage, since it only continues to showcase your deliberate dishonesty.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            I did not say that Sanger a Nazi. I affirm that American eugenicists Nazis and shared many beliefs. It is true that Margaret Sanger rejected Nazi antisemitism but it is also true that Marie Stopes was a great admirer of Hitler.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            “Honorable Chancellor,
            I enclose a newspaper clipping of Minnesota Minneapolis, United States of America, in relation to, and praising his plan to end the mental inferiority among the German people.
            I hope you accept my sincere hope that their efforts in this direction will be a great success and advance the eugenics movement in other countries as well as in Germany.
            Sincerely. C. F. dight Minnesota Eugenics Society President “(Letter to Adolf Hitler on August 1, 1933 by Dr. Charles Fremont Dight, admirer of Nazism and board member of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, PPFA, lobby founded by Margaret Sanger) .

          • goatini

            Since it’s amply documented that Ms Sanger abhorred Hitler and his regime, you’ve just made a very public fool of yourself.

          • colleen2

            ah, he’s been doing that right along.

          • colleen2

            The ‘Witch Persecutions’ being the Inquisitions? The Church has never stopped persecuting women. When I listen to them speak of ‘feminists’, your clergy has the stench of the Inquisitions about them, the same mindless hatred, sick sexuality and sadism their predecessors expressed when they tortured and burned us alive. It’s what the Church does when it needs to bolster it’s supposed moral authority. Now y’all are just going to have to be content with trapping women whose bodies cannot sustain their pregnancies and torturing them in your hospitals untill the rotting fetus inside them kills them.

          • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

            Inquisitor Alonso de Salazar Frías has been given the epithet “The Witches’ Advocate”.

          • colleen2

            so what?

    • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

      Cade, the jesuit standard is not bigot. Jesuits had contributed to the development of pendulum clocks, pantographs, barometers, reflecting telescopes and microscopes, to scientific fields as various as magnetism, optics and electricity. They observed, in some cases before anyone else, the colored bands on Jupiter’s surface, the Andromeda nebula and Saturn’s rings. They theorized about the circulation of the blood (independently of Harvey), the theoretical possibility of flight, the way the moon effected the tides, and the wave-like nature of light. Star maps of the southern hemisphere, symbolic logic, flood-control measures on the Po and Adige rivers, introducing plus and minus signs into Italian mathematics — all were typical Jesuit achievements, and scientists as influential as Fermat, Huygens, Leibniz and Newton were not alone in counting Jesuits among their most prized correspondents [Jonathan Wright, The Jesuits, 2004, p. 189].

      • HeilMary1

        The Jesuits are also guilty of many genocides and gynocides. Get over yourself, abuse apologist!

        • http://www.facebook.com/alfonso.taboadaportal Alfonso Taboada Portal

          Can you give me some example of genocide Jesuit? Please.

          • goatini

            Native peoples of what is now California.

          • HeilMary1

            Wherever they were “missionaries”, especially the Americas.

  • http://twitter.com/#!/dameocrat Dameocrat

    Hard to parse the Church’s current strategy. I think those delusional old guys think if they get a guy that rides the bus that working class women will think birth control is evil. That defies common sense since the real reason use it is because it makes life easier. Nuns have nothing to do with anything, but the wierdos in the vatican think they have an affect.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=9433650 Sarah ES

    You mean there was hope for a gentle Pope in the first place? Maybe I’m just cynical, but…

  • Ruth Rivera

    Wow, color me surprised! /sarcasm

    The new pope, same as the old one. A misogynistic, rape-sanctioning, pedophile-enabling prune.

  • 1nsomniacTheater

    How sadly ironic. Upon his election, this man chose to take the name of Francis of Assisi, and claimed he did so because of his concern for the poor.

    • goatini

      His “humility” is all BS window dressing.