History of U.S. nuns battle against male Church authoritarianism

This is a link to a marvellous article from Global Sisters Report, giving the history of almost two centuries of struggle between American Nuns and Church Male authority, local bishops in the earlier years, and the Vatican more recently.

I have great admiration for the U.S. sisters in the way they handled their recent dealings with the CDF.  But I realised from this article that they have years of experience, and have developed a skill and a political savvy that is hard to resist.

The Irish Times

Recently, the Irish Times religious correspondent, Patsy McGarry, wrote an article based on a couple of my pieces here in this blog. One issue he raised was what I said here about the question of whether Mary had other children besides Jesus. It had come up in the readings of a recent Sunday Mass. I had suggested that the teaching about the perpetual virginity of Mary came out of the early Church rejection of sexuality, and contributed to the narrow attitudes that have come down to our day.

Reflection of today’s Mass Readings

The readings for today’s Mass set me thinking. First there was the sentence in St. Paul about the ‘thorn in the flesh’. The Church has traditionally made maximum use of that, giving it an interpretation that may or may not be accurate, in order to support and strengthen its particular agenda about sexuality. It greatly helped in the Church’s efforts to make anything to do with sex the greatest sin. I happen to be reading some of the essays of John McGahern, and today I came across his reflection on sexuality:

“We are sexual from the moment we are born until we die; it grows as the body grows and fails with that body; but by then it has become part of the mind as well, the will and the intelligence and heart, which continues to grow even as the body fails and suffuses everything we hold precious or dear.

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