Speakers at LCWR assembly urge sisters to embrace new challenges
Published: August 10, 2012
ST. LOUIS (CNS) -- A keynote speaker and a group of panelists addressing the 900 sisters at the annual assembly of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious urged the sisters to embrace new challenges. Speakers did not refer directly to the Vatican doctrinal assessment calling for a reform of LCWR, whose members are the 1,500 leaders of U.S. women's communities representing about 80 percent of the country's 57,000 women in religious congregations. Instead, they spoke broadly about how the sisters can bring about change or specific challenges they should consider. The St. Louis gathering was the first time the organization had assembled since the release of the April 18 Vatican assessment, which said reform was needed to ensure LCWR's fidelity to Catholic teaching in such areas as abortion, euthanasia, women's ordination and homosexuality. Barbara Marx Hubbard, the main speaker Aug. 8, essentially told the sisters to embrace the notion of change and growth reflected in biblical passages that speak of rebirth and "making all things new." Hubbard pointed out that although she is not Catholic, she was drawn to the work of the sisters and called them "the best seed bed I know for evolving the church and the world in the 21st century." "That may be a surprise to the world," she said. "But, you see, new things always happen from unexpected places."
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