LCWR 2015

Sr. Janet Mock: 'Everything I learned about leadership, I learned from you'

Sr. Janet Mock said it is not she, but those around her who deserve accolades. “I have no illusions — everything I learned about leadership, I learned from you and your predecessors,” she told the Leadership Conference of Women Religious’ annual assembly after accepting the group’s Outstanding Leadership Award at their banquet Friday evening. LCWR officials said Mock not only provided extraordinary leadership as their executive director, but did it “through one of the conference’s most profound and transformative challenges — the doctrinal assessment of LCWR by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and its subsequent mandate.”

Sr. Mary Pellegrino becomes LCWR's new president-elect

Sr. Mary Pellegrino, a Sister of St. Joseph, was installed Friday as the president-elect of the nation’s largest leadership group for women religious, LCWR, which is closing its annual assembly this evening (Aug. 14). In Pellegrino's candidate materials, she said the critical issues for LCWR in the next three years are to remain both learners and leaders while discerning the most appropriate use of the group’s moral authority. She also said LCWR needs to continue to integrate the contemplative process into all the organization’s work.

LCWR reviews its own steadiness, finds ability to build relationships where trust could grow

In the penultimate address at this year’s Leadership Conference of Women Religious national assembly, former LCWR executive director St. Joseph Sr. Janet Mock made some of her most pointed public remarks on the Vatican’s now-concluded LCWR doctrinal assessment and mandate. The Houston assembly marked the first time the general membership had met since the Vatican’s controversial oversight of the group ended in April, and LCWR leaders had only been speaking to select media outlets in the interim, wanting to save further discussion until everyone had a chance to reflect together.

In latest justice resolution, U.S. sisters recommit to ending family detention

The Leadership Conference of Women Religious membership on Friday morning voted to adopt a resolution that commits member congregations to addressing systemic causes of injustice. While the resolution itself is broad, the focus of the resolution presentation, unquestionably, was immigration and the detention of women and children seeking asylum.

Reporter's notebook from LCWR assembly: Best-laid plans, LGBT outreach, new officers

GSR Today - Not all of the activity at the Leadership Conference of Women Religious' annual assembly is worthy of a separate news story. Still, your GSR reporting team is here from gavel to gavel, and we know our readers are following along with great interest, so here's a wrap-up of some of the things that didn't make the big headlines at the conference.

LCWR speaker: Quench the thirsts of the world by focusing on the Holy Spirit

The church does not have a mission — rather, God's mission has a church, a priest told a gathering of women religious Thursday morning. Divine Word Fr. Stephen Bevans told approximately 800 members of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious gathered here for the group's annual assembly that only by focusing on the Holy Spirit can they quench the thirsts of the world. To live God's mission, Bevans said, the church must live in what he called "prophetic dialogue."

Changing reality of religious life takes stage at LCWR conference

In the second public address of the first full day of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious' 2015 assembly, St. Joseph Sr. Janet Mock spoke about the changing reality of religious life, likening it to the resurrected body of Christ. "If your congregation has done all it can do, you must place the collective wisdom that is yours at the service of the world through prayer and suffering, entering into the passivity of Christ for the good of the world," she said, adding that life always comes out of death.

LCWR president: A new era of communion with Vatican closes 'cultural chasm'

The controversial investigations of U.S. women religious by the Vatican — and resulting tensions — stemmed largely from a "cultural chasm," the group's president, Immaculate Heart of Mary Sr. Sharon Holland, said Wednesday. But that chasm is closing, she said, and a new era of communion seems to have begun.

'Meeting the Thirsts of the World' opens with relaxed tone

The 2015 annual assembly of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious officially began Tuesday evening with centering song followed by greetings from Sr. Marcia Allen, president-elect; Sr. Sharon Holland, president; and Sr. Carol Zinn (past president). This is the first such gathering for the approximately 1,400 leaders of the United States' sisters in several years that is taking place without being under the cloud of Vatican investigations. LCWR represents about 80 percent of the 50,000-some women religious in the U.S., and almost 800 of the leaders are in Houston, Texas, this week for "Springs of the Great Deep Burst Forth: Meeting the Thirsts of the World."