Limited Posting

Due to a serious health crisis in the family, blogging is going to be sporadic for a while. Thank you for your understanding.

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Fr. Z On The Great Nun Controversy

Friends, no matter what the nuns claim, this whole mess with the CDF and American bishops is not about bishops having power over nuns, or men being over women.

The problem is that the LCWR types are “moving beyond Jesus”.  They are drifting out Christianity.

That looks like hyperbole when I state it this starkly, but this is really where they are going.

I don’t think these nuns even realize where they are going.

When you come right down to it, their problem is – ironically – with the documents of Vatican II!  They really have a problem with Lumen gentium on the constitution of the Church.  They don’t know who the Church is and who they are in the Church.  They no longer understand what consecrated life is (they think they are “prophetic” and therefore are allowed to “question” any teaching and are free from the “institutional” Church and hierarchy) and they have forgotten who their Lord is (they are moving beyond Jesus).

And their real enemy is Vatican II.  They have more problems with Vatican II than the Lefevbrists have.  We will probably reach an accord with the SSPX before the LCWR is squared away.

I know where they are going.  The LCWR gals are on a train, zooming down the track straight toward a canyon, and the bridge is out.
From here.

I think that is a pretty insightful summary of things.


igumen gregory said...

And so why are they listed as Roman Cwqtholics in good standing?

John (Ad Orientem) said...

I am not sure they will be for much longer. Rome has already put the canonical equivalent to an asterisk next to their name.

Fr Theodore said...

I know well the language these renegade religous speak -- I learned it in the Episcopal Church before I became Orthodox!

"Dialogue": Haranguing others with your "story" until, in one way or another, they give in, give up, or get out.

Anonymous said...

What in the teaching of the Orthodox saints suggests these nuns are missing mark further than the Roman hierarchy?

John (Ad Orientem) said...

Well most of these so called nuns are sympathetic to female ordination, homosexual marriage, most support birth control and at least some openly support abortion. Some also have become almost Universalist in their theology and accept the legitimacy of all religions. So yes, I would say they have moved far beyond Rome in their heresies.

sjgmore said...

We will probably reach an accord with the SSPX before the LCWR is squared away.

I think this is where Fr. Z. is off the mark.... I would hope he's right, but let's face it, the "biological solution" to the LCWR's problems may square away their situation before an accord is reached with the younger, more vibrant SSPX.

Jack O'Malleyd said...

John: I would say they have moved far beyond Rome in their heresies

Good Lord, but how do we determine how far Rome has moved in her heresies? Who determines that? Who? Not what council, but who?

Especially considering the conciliation of Ferrara-Florence. Oh yes, the theologic plebs rebelled. Tanto peggio.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
John (Ad Orientem) said...

Abusive and bigoted comments are a no no here.

Matushka Anna said...

The Church fathers were Universalist? Where on earth are you getting this? And I am getting sick and tired of the "Oh, they served the poor so they can support abortion," argument.

I'm disgusted. These "nuns" are nothing of the sort. They have renounced the Catholic faith but like to call themselves Catholic. In another 20 years they'll all be too feeble to notice that they've died out and the newer vocations want nothing to do with them.

Matushka Anna said...

[My comment was in response to the comment which John just deleted.]

John (Ad Orientem) said...

Sorry Matushka. But that comment was beyond the pale. I'm not sure if it was the same anonymous who has been trolling around here for a few weeks now. But I am about done with it.

Stephen said...

John, why do you accept Anonymous postings in the first place?

John (Ad Orientem) said...

It has rarely been a problem until recently. But I am rethinking the comments policy.

CJ said...

"The Church fathers were Universalist? Where on earth are you getting this?"

Didn't Gregory of Nyssa drift uncomfortably close to univeralism? Not that it's the teaching of the church, but it has popped up from time to time, even among the saints and fathers of the church.

Anonymous said...


The difference is their universalism never rejected Jesus as the sole saviour.

stranger-in-a-strange-world said...

Wait, are we talking about the Dostoevsky quote that was removed? In what sense was that "bigoted" or "beyond the pale" - isn't that the climax of The Idiot and one of his central critiques of Christianity? Help me out with this one...

By the way, I think removing anonymous blog comments is a good policy.

John (Ad Orientem) said...

The comment was a way over the top attack on the RCC complete with references to the anti-Christ etc. It was worthy of Jack Chick.

stranger-in-a-strange-world said...

Just to be clear, I am not your recent troller.

But let me get this right - Dostoevsky's central critique of Christian history - the climax of the Idiot - is worthy of Jack Chick? Never thought I would see that in writing - even Rodney Delasanta in his First Things hit piece doesn't go quite that far. I am at a loss as to how to respond. By the way, the Idiot is at least as critical of Orthodox Russia.

(For reference, Delasanta's piece is here:

Unsurprisingly, the best translation of Dostoevsky's second most important novel is Pevear and Volokhonsky's - I doubt the quote was taken from their translation.)

Anonymous said...


Dostoevsky did borrow heavily from the black legends on that issue, that have been debunked by historians.

Anonymous said...

stranger in a strange world,

The difference is that this black legends coming from Elizabethan England has been debunked by historians.

The other thing is that these good sisters do not understand basic theology.

The rule of faith is both scripture and tradition, so if they want private revelation, that scripture warns against, they can look to thousands of Protestant denominations, that each claim to be inspired by the Holy Spirit and have conflicting doctrines.


Anonymous said...

Now, I understand the whole claim to conscience, but informed conscience is based on examining the evidence available to make up your mind. If you refuse to look at the evidence or data, then it's sola ego, which means you think you are better inspired by God.

This is in fact an act of blind faith and not reason.


Anonymous said...

Are you confusing Karamazov with the Idiot? Dostoevsky's point about temporal power is one that many Roman Catholics would agree with - I find the edits on this blog of normal (even normative) Orthodox views incomprehensible. Stranger

Anonymous said...


The point is what the heck does this have to do with the article about doctrinal issues?

The Orthodox church clearly holds that if someone does not agree with their doctrines, they can move on.

Everybody's personal and political views cannot be declared official.


Anonymous said...


The point is what does this have to do with doctrine.


John (Ad Orientem) said...

OK this thread has long since fallen off the main page and I think it's pretty much been beat to death. Thanks for everyone's comments.