7 YEARS LATER: Eye Opening Article: “Disorder among the Orders”

April 21, 2015

Eye Opening Article: “Disorder among the Orders”

In 2008 I am wondering:

  • What became of the dissident orders listed below?
  • How has the model of the “sister who lives in an apartment alone and drinks beer on tap at the local watering hole” worked out?  Have folks like that stuck with the orders as the much older members needed care in nursing homes and the motherhouses got consolidated or sold?
  • What became of all the motherhouses?  We are just a few years away from a massive sell off of motherhouses that are the last homes to communities that no longer need them for formation.  For a number of them, they can’t today and most certainly won’t be able to use them in the next 10 years for existing members….  The combination of size, expense and unsuitability of a lot of these locations as nursing homes… And that is where the majority of today’s women religous who belong to the “Leadership Conference of Women Religious” will be – if they are still in this vale of tears – in the next 10-20 years.  Longevity for women who failed to have spiritual daughters will not prove to be a picnic.
  • Conversely, how are the Domincians in Nashville doing?  Ann Arbor?  What about in New Jersey?  How are the women of the Franciscans of the Eternal Word faring?  Are they in need of downsizing today?  Have they been forced into selling motherhouses for lack of bodies to fill them?
  • A recent study of 142 new or emerging communities of consecrated life by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University concluded that “the Catholic Church in the United States may be on the threshold of another cycle of rebirth in consecrated life — new groups of Catholics committed to a shared spirituality and the evangelical counsels [vows of poverty, chastity and obedience] that will address the changing times, concerns and needs in new and creative ways.”” – How did that play out?
  • What happened to the Basilian Sisters of Saint Basil the Great in Union Town?  Are they still at the motherhouse?
  • What happened to the Holy Cross Sisters at Notre Dame?

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Monday, April 21, 2008

SOURCE: http://romancatholicvocations.blogspot.com/2008/04/eye-opening-article-disorder-among.html

Eye Opening Article: “Disorder among the Orders”

From Our Sunday Visitor

By Ann Carey
Emphases and (comments) mine – BW
With vocations shrinking and financial problems looming large, some women Religious find themselves at a crossroads
When leaders of Religious orders met with Pope Benedict XVI earlier this year, he praised and encouraged them, but also expressed concern that many orders are in crisis, with shrinking numbers, confusion over their role and identity, and even disagreement with Church teaching.

Speaking to a group of superiors general, Pope Benedict said that many orders are experiencing “a difficult crisis due to the aging of members, a more or less accentuated fall in vocations and, sometimes, a spiritual and charismatic weariness.”

Three days later, the pope met with leaders of the Jesuits and reminded them of their fundamental duty of “keeping the harmony with the magisterium, which avoids creating confusion and bewilderment among the people of God.”

It may seem strange to Catholics in the pews that Pope Benedict felt compelled to remind superiors that many Religious orders are in disarray and that they should be in harmony with the magisterium. After all, canon law says that sisters, brothers and priests in Religious orders are to be “totally dedicated to God” and to “the upbuilding of the Church.”

Yet, the pope was voicing the obvious: Many Religious orders that thrived for a century or more have given up their traditional work and common life and are struggling to decide who they are and how they relate to the Church.

Furthermore, many of the most outspoken Church dissidents are members of Religious orders, a fact that naturally raises this question: “How can one remain a member of a Religious order while at the same time rejecting Church teaching?”

While Religious orders of both men and women are struggling today, the men’s orders have remained more stable, probably because about three-quarters of the approximately 19,000 men Religious are priests, an identity that grounds them.

The crisis is more pronounced among women’s orders, which have about 65,000 members. What follows is a closer look at the current concerns about Religious orders via a focus on women Religious.

These include a loss of identity, shrinking vocations, retirement worries and at-risk property. Some of the sisters interviewed for this article asked not to be named out of concern for repercussions from their orders.

Some orders have lost a sense of themselves

Before the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), Religious sisters almost always lived in convents, where they shared Eucharist and common prayer with other sisters. They worked in their orders’ institutions in jobs like teachers, nurses, retreat leaders, counselors and administrators, and carried out their work in communion with the Church. They also understood their identity as vowed, consecrated persons dedicated to Jesus Christ and his Church — a role clearly defined by the Church.

When Vatican II documents directed Religious orders to update obsolete practices and to examine their lives and ministry according to their founders’ vision, confusion reigned in many orders. Some orders did manage to renew their practices — perhaps 10 percent to 20 percent of women’s orders — while maintaining their identity as consecrated Religious.

Pope Benedict alluded to those renewed orders in his remarks to superiors, saying they are a positive sign, “especially when communities have chosen to return to the origins and live in a way more in keeping with the spirit of the founder.”

However, many orders of women Religious went far beyond the mandates of Vatican II, even blurring the distinction between their vowed members and lay “associate members.” These orders have been outspoken in their efforts to “transform,” bring “systemic change” and “re-image” Religious life and Read the rest of this entry »


Catholics In Need: Ivory Coast

April 28, 2009

One Bread Delivers Bibles to St. John the Baptist Mission in Mandallah

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Africa:

 

This summer our African Missionary in the Ivory Coast, West Africa, travelled north in his country to the city of Mandallah, and the St. John the Baptist Mission to delivery 688 bibles in two native languages spoken by the villagers.

 

Above, at a special Mass at which the bibles were presented to the congregation, the altar servers carried some of the bibles to the altar.

The grant to purchase these bibles for the mission was provided by a Catholic foundation in Raleigh, North Carolina. The congregation was most grateful and will use these bibles in their catechism classes.

Below One Bread’s African representative, Bekoli Boika, presents the bibles to the priest in front of the congregation.

 

The Congregation of St John the Baptist Mission at the start of the Mass at which the bibles were presented.

 

To request materials for use in Africa, please contact:
Mr. Boika Bekoli Louis
One Bread Lay Apostolate-Africa
25 BP 1100 Abidjan 25
Ivory Coast, West Africa
1bread-africa@excite.com
(+225) 07845050

 


VOCATIONS TUESDAY: Third Order Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate

December 9, 2008

The Third Order Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate is an offshoot of the Franciscans Tertiaries of the Immaculate founded by Fr. Stefano Manelli, FI. They are totally dedicated to Our Lady sealed by the Marian vow of total consecration to the Immaculate, after the recent example of St. Maximilian Kolbe. They live a penitential life of prayer in community; have made private vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.

 

Starting the day with Morning Prayer, the Sisters go out to work in a variety of church related occupations centered in the parish. They also make and sell rosaries, rosary bracelets, and a variety of craft items to help support the FI missions. Spiritually united with the other Sisters, each sister prays the Angelus, Rosary, Chaplet of Divine Mercy and other community prayers. Living a life of love and joy in the Immaculate, the Sisters seek to make Our lady known and loved and to bring all to Christ through the Immaculate. Coming together for meals, the Sisters are spiritually renewed with readings from a variety of pious works.

The Sisters live in community, wear a traditional habit, and are in total conformity with the church magisterium. Under the guidance of the FI priests, the Sisters share the same charism and spirituality as the FI missionary friars and Sisters, and also evangelize through mission appeals to support the FI missions. The formation program consists of aspirancy, postulancy, novitiate, and profession. The Sisters accept candidates beginning with the age of 18, as well as delayed vocations. They have one retreat Sunday a month, make a variety of novenas during the year, pray the Stations of the Cross, Franciscan crown and have choir practice as well as other spiritual exercises throughout the month.

After coming together for evening prayer, the Sisters enjoy each other’s company at recreation. Closing the day with night prayers, the Sisters retire after singing a hymn to Our Lady enclosing themselves under her mantle with the knowledge that they have brought joy and solace to mission lands through their prayer and support of Our Lady’s missionaries.

If you are interested of knowing more about these sisters, please write or contact:

Franciscan Tertiary Sisters of the Immaculate
E-Mail: maryqueenofapostles@cox.net
Telephone (401) 725-8417

SOURCE: http://www.marymediatrix.com/religious-life/franciscan-tertiary-sisters-of-the-immaculate/

NOTE TO READERS: If you have any suggestions for orders or communities you feel should be highlighted for TCB’s “Vocations Tuesday” please Contact us! @ ASimpleSinner@gmail.com!

 


Happy 20th Anniversary, Fraternity of Saint Peter (FSSP)

October 25, 2008

Today the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter celebrates the 20 anniversary of its canonical erection as a society of apostolic life of pontifical right by His Holiness of happy memory, Pope John Paul II. It began humbly with 11 priests and 1 deacon.

Today they are 300+ members strong with two packed seminaries – one in Austria and one in Nebraska.

Consider sending a birthday card with a $5 bill to:

The Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter
North American Headquarters
Griffin Rd, PO Box 196
Elmhurst, PA 18416

“Who would have thought that this small group of traditional, Latin rite priests would so quickly grow to over 300 members working and studying on 5 continents in the 17 different countries serving over 85 dioceses … and then become THE main force for the implementation of a papal decree expressly promoting the return of the traditional Latin Mass, now known as the “extraordinary form” of the Roman missal, as well as all the sacraments and devotions that go along with it?” (from: http://www.fssp.com/main/News071019.htm)


VOCATIONS TUESDAY: Carmelite Monks in Wyoming

August 12, 2008

5 bob to Roman Catholic Vocations Blog which writes: Carmelite Monks in Wyoming #1

The post below was written by Deal Hudson on September 25, 2007 and orginally posted on his personal blog.
The Last Carmelite Monks in America
By Deal W. Hudson

The last eight Carmelite monks in America, perhaps even the world, live in a four-bedroom rectory in the mountains of northwest Wyoming.

With 35 candidates in various stages of discernment, they hope to move 70 miles away to a 492-acre property near Carter Mountain once owned by Read the rest of this entry »


VOCATIONS TUESDAY: Ann Arbor Dominicans (Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist)

August 9, 2008
“We are consecrated women first, and so our foremost model is Mary, the Mother of God. Inspired by the charism of St. Dominic, our prayer life comes first so that our apostolate overflows from a contemplation nourished before the Eucharist.”
– Mother Assumpta Long, O.P.
By living this strong sacramental and liturgical prayer life, we hope to:
  • Attract and form women to be faithful religious serving the Church for the good of souls, especially through the total gift of themselves as spiritual mothers and brides of Christ.
  • Establish and support Catholic schools steeped in the rich culture of the Catholic faith to nourish the spiritual formation of youth, their families and society.
  • Promote the culture of life and respect for the dignity of each person through apostolic work.
  • Respond to the needs of the Church arising in the third millennium through teaching, catechesis and evangelization.Learn more below:
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    NOTE TO READERS: If you have any suggestions for orders or communities you feel should be highlighted for TCB’s “Vocations Tuesday” please Contact us! @ ASimpleSinner@gmail.com! Include “VOCATIONS TUESDAY” in the subject line please!


    VOCATIONS TUESDAY: Community Of St. John: 32 Years, 500 Members & Growing

    June 10, 2008

    A friend of mine once stated “The only good things to come out of France were wine, cheese and Jean-Claude Van Damme!”

    Of course he was wrong about that.

    Jean-Claude Van Damme is from Belgium.

    But these folks definately DID come from the “Elder Daughter of the Church”… And they are certainly a very GOOD thing.

    Community of Saint John, founded in 1975 by five or six university students under the guidance of a Dominican priest, Fr Marie-Dominique Philippe. They are now a Congregation of diocesan right, approved by the Church, with over five hundred members, about two hundred of whom are priests; they also have contemplative sisters and sisters of apostolic life who share the same charism and spirituality.

    From their FAQ: “What is the current number of Brothers in the Community of St. John?On July 31, 2006, the Brothers were 531 in number; 365 (68%) were perpetually professed Brothers (of which 221 were priests) and about 40% were in formation. The Sisters were 464 and there were more than 2,500 secular Oblates. “

     

    In the US there web presence is: http://www.communityofstjohn.com/
    From that website:
    The brothers have excercised much of their apostolic activities through the Retreat Center in Laredo, Texas. Brothers living in the Laredo priory serve as University chaplains and also minister to prison inmates. The Contemplative Sisters of Saint John live adjacent to the Laredo priory.
    In 2000, the Congregation opened a Novitiate House for brothers and sisters in Princeville, Illinois, where they receive their first Read the rest of this entry »