It could be the scene of an ordinary school day anywhere. Just a few days before Christmas, the younger students were making decorations and singing carols downstairs, while the older ones were taking their final exams upstairs. But for the Syrian refugee children at the Good Shepherd Social Center in Deir al-Ahmar, getting an education is something many of their young compatriots are missing. "It started with a storm," said Good Shepherd Sr. Micheline Lattouf, who heads the center
GSR Today - I’ll give you three guesses for naming the No. 1 mainstream media story this week concerning women religious. Actually, you don’t even need three. The Vatican’s report on the apostolic visitation released Tuesday accounted for most of this week’s news about nuns and merited the same type of headlines from the mainstream media that it did from the non-secular press.
See for yourself - As Thanksgiving week approached, any number of faculty and staff at the university where I work asked me what I was going to be doing for the Thanksgiving holiday break. I replied, “I’ll be judging a beauty pageant.” The incredulous reactions were something like, “You? Judging a beauty pageant? What does a nun know about doing that?”
Troubled Filipino Worker in Japan? Call Sr. Marcy. If you are a Filipino migrant worker in Japan who has had troubles with immigration, chances are you have heard of Sr. Marcy Jacinto. She is the Mercedarian Missionaries of Berriz nun from Zamboanga City, southern Philippines, whose name and mobile phone number are circulating in detention centers for undocumented migrants in Japan, or in homes of families of problematic Filipino workers.
The Vatican’s report on the apostolic visitation released Tuesday was an affirmation of women religious in the United States – but was it yet another possible sign of a change in tone at the highest levels of the Catholic church? With its calls for dialogue and collaboration – and a nod toward greater decision making by women – the report follows October’s Synod on the Family, where open debate of topics that had not previously been up for discussion appeared to signal to some a sea change in how the Vatican operates.
An exclusive interview with Immaculate Heart of Mary Sr. Sharon Holland, president of LCWR: The woman who represents tens of thousands of U.S. Catholic sisters has said she hopes release of a report on the controversial six-year Vatican investigation of their life and work can lead to "greater forgiveness and reconciliation" between sisters and church leaders.
Tuesday, the Vatican released the final report from the three-year apostolic visitation to U.S. women religious – and largely to praise. Many people, both religious and lay, celebrated the report’s conciliatory language, calling the document an olive branch and a step forward in mending the relationship between women’s congregations and the Vatican. But the sentiment wasn’t universal.
Three Stats and a Map - On Sunday, United Nations delegates wrapped up a two-week climate summit in Lima, Peru. The point of the summit was to draft an agreement that would commit participating countries to a plan to cut carbon emissions – a plan that would not put undue financial pressure on developing nations.
Commentary - The apostolic visitation, which sowed much division and cast a dark shadow over the lives and work of U.S. women religious for nearly six years, is finally drawing to an end. Beleaguered as we are, for this we should express gratitude. To quote from T.S. Eliot: "Not with a bang but a whimper."
The Vatican has an archived copy of the press conference from Dec. 16 at the Vatican where the apostolic visitation report was released and discussed, and Rome Reports has three short video interviews of key players: Mother M. Clare Millea, Sr. Sharon Holland and Mother Agnes Mary Donovan. Filmmaker Melissa Regan, who is making a Nuns on the Bus movie, talked to Sr. Simone Campbell about the report, too.
Women religious and interested watchers responded with gratitude – and a bit of caution – to the Vatican’s response to the apostolic visitation Tuesday, saying it represents both a dramatic change in tone toward sisters’ work in the United States and a path for future dialogue.