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Friday, July 04, 2008

Take Action for Sr. Louise Lears

NOTE: Please head on over NOW and sign the petition for Sr. Louise Lears who was excommunicated for her support of the ordination of women. Any woman who is ordained in Christ's one, holy, catholic and apostolic church is not complete until every woman who is duly called to ordained ministry has the opportunity to fulfill her true and authentic vocation.

Target: Pope Benedict XVI, The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Most Rev. Raymond Burke, Prefect Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura
Sponsored by: Women's Ordination Conference

On Thursday, June 26, Archbishop Raymond Burke imposed penalities on Sister Louise Lears, Sister of Charity, for her support of women's full equality and justice in the Roman Catholic Church.

After six months of proceedings, the decree was issued the day before Pope Benedict XVI appointed Archbishop Burke to head the highest court in the Catholic Church, as the Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura in Rome.

Archbishop Burke of St. Louis imposed two penalties on Sister Lears, 1) the penalty of interdict, which means that she cannot participate in public worship in a ministerial capacity and cannot receive the Sacraments and 2) the penalty of prohibition from reception of a mission anywhere in the Archdiocese of St. Louis, which means she can no longer serve in her positions as a member of the Pastoral Team at St. Cronan's Catholic Church and as the Coordinator of Religious Education.

We the undersigned believe the penalties callously imposed on Sister Louise Lears-a Sister of Charity who has dedicated her life in service of the Catholic Church-is a prime example of the way women are often wrongly treated by the hierarchy in the Roman Catholic Church.

We support Sister Louise Lears in her life and ministry in the Church. We oppose these penalties as way of dealing with differences and dissent. Such misuse of Church discipline will not extinguish the widespread call for women's equality nor intimidate women into accepting marginal status within the Church.

Sister Louise has the support of millions of Catholics who seek only the gospel promise of equality and we demand that these penalties be revoked as quickly as possible.

Thank you.

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/10/Take-Action-for-Sister-Louise.org

9 comments:

FranIAm said...

This is great and everyone can sign. At FranIam a lot of people mentioned that they were not Catholic... well that does not matter!

Please support Sister Louise!

Thanks for this Elizabeth.

David said...

Well this queer Anglican signed, and I've also sent out group e-mails to friends and my contact lists.

The sad thing is, I have faint hope that either the promoted Bishop or the Pope will be swayed, or even recognize the initiative. My sense is that these days, especially under the current incumbent, the Vatican is little more that a collective self-delusion.

That said, it's essential that whenever we witness we stand up to it, and so thank-you Elizabeth for making this possible

David@Montreal

Kirkepiscatoid said...

I think the thing that torques me off the most about this is that it was definitely a parting shot from Burke as he heads to Rome. That dude threatens excommunication at the drop of the hat.

As one of my RC friends here said, "He's perfect for the Vatican. He's one of the greatest minds of the 13th century."

Muthah+ said...

This is what happens to women who are good in the Roman Church--and this is what happens when bishops of any stripe when we do not call them to account.

Pam said...

Sr. Louise was not excommunicated. Just to keep the record clear on the Anglican side, these are the two penalties that while harsh and unwarrented, are not excommunication. Archbishop Burke of St. Louis imposed two penalties on Sister Lears, 1) the penalty of interdict, which means that she cannot participate in public worship in a ministerial capacity and cannot receive the Sacraments and 2) the penalty of prohibition from reception of a mission anywhere in the Archdiocese of St. Louis, which means she can no longer serve in her positions as a member of the Pastoral Team at St. Cronan's Catholic Church and as the Coordinator of Religious Education.
She merely attended an ordination and supports women's ordination, but did not seek ordination herself. Women's ordination in the RC church is instantly awarded by excommunication. All of you Anglicans are truly catholic in the sense of the word meaning universal and inclusive. I am a former Anglican and my RCIA classes did not prepare me for the sexism and mean-spiritedness some bishops, priests and even lay people exhibit towards women who seek to answer their Call to be priests. The bishop who punished Sr. Lears was swiftly promoted and sent to Rome. This is how they deal with controversial bishops-they promote them where they can no longer mess with the laity.
Sort of the Catholic Peter Principle (forgive the pun).
God bless all of you. I may find myself back in your fold if I keep mouthing off. Who knows I may get a visit from the the men in black, whoops, red.
Pam

Kirkepiscatoid said...

Well, as my Amish farrier would say, "They shunned her."

Ellie Finlay said...

Um, help me understand this, Pam. If she cannot receive the sacraments, how is that not being excommunicated? Does it mean that the hierarchy has generously refrained from saying she's definitely going to hell???

Heck, if I were not allowed to receive communion I would sure FEEL excommunicated and for all practical purposes I might as well be.

By the way, I signed the petition.

JCF said...

I am a former Anglican and my RCIA classes did not prepare me for the sexism and mean-spiritedness... God bless all of you. I may find myself back in your fold if I keep mouthing off.

Um, Pam hon: you DO know you're welcome back at ANY time? No groveling, no "auricular confession" for your time away required? (And no excommunications hanging over your head, either) Come on home! :-)

Bill said...

It always amazes me when I see the fear the Catholic Church has towards women. Just what is it they think women will do to the Church. You can’t study the Bible and church history and not realize that the prohibitions against women in the Church come from a long history of male dominated societies. They absolutely refuse to see the writing on the wall. Every time women make inroads into these bastions of male dominancy, do they act embarrassed or ask forgiveness? NO, they just dig the heels of their little red shoes in deeper. I wonder if they think that if they ignore the problem, it will simply go away?

Sometimes you just want to SCREAM!!!