Reading aloud from a prepared statement, which came after approval from the 900 sisters gathered at the assembly, LCWR’s president, Franciscan Sr. Pat Farrell, said LCWR membership wanted to use the occasion of the Vatican order “to explain to church leaders LCWR’s mission, values and operating principles.”
“The assembly instructed the LCWR officers to conduct their conversation with Archbishop Sartain from a stance of deep prayer that values mutual respect, careful listening and open dialogue,” the statement said. “The officers will proceed with these discussions as long as possible, but will reconsider if LCWR is forced to compromise the integrity of its mission.”
The organization which represents the majority of U.S. Catholic sisters said Friday afternoon it would continue discussions with church officials regarding a Vatican-ordered takeover, but “will reconsider” if it “is forced to compromise the integrity of its mission.”
The LCWR national board is expected to meet with Archbishop Sartain in St. Louis Sunday for about two hours. The focus of that meeting “will be on beginning to process with him and see how that unfolds,” Farrell said at a press conference.
The LCWR expect “open and honest dialogue” with Sartian that “may lead not only to increasing understanding between the church leadership and women religious, but also to creating more possibilities for the laity and, particularly for women, to have a voice in the church,” the statement said.
“Religious life, as it is lived by the women religious who compromise LCWR, is an authentic expression of this life that must not be compromised,” it said.