Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Why Catholic nuns are disappearing

One Ken Briggs just wrote a book called Double Crossed: Uncovering the Catholic Church's Betrayal of American Nuns.

Yes, you read that correctly -- "betrayal." You see, according to Mr. Briggs, the Council told them to do everything they did afterwards. "Most communities of nuns doffed the habit for civilian clothes, decided to permit sisters to live outside the convent, and gave sisters a choice whether to continue working within church institutions or, in keeping with a newfound mission to the broader world, to function as professionals in secular settings," he wrote in the above-linked column.

So when the Catholic Church didn't follow their lead, they were "betrayed." I wrote the following letter to the editor, which I believe sums things up nicely:
I just came across Ken Briggs' commentary announcing his new book on why Catholic nuns are disappearing. There's one thing that Mr. Briggs appears not to get. By "following their own lights," they aren't following the Light of the World, the only light the Church is called to follow. So when you have nuns describing themselves as crones (witches), giving Da Vinci Code tours and leading tours of Central America in order to help women find the goddess within (and that's all within but one community), somehow or other I just don't think too many women are going to be attracted to that as a legitimate expression of Catholic life.

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