Pope to Nuns: Don't Be Old Maids

From ABC News:

Pope Francis has told nuns from around the world that they must be spiritual mothers and not “old maids.” Francis also warned the sisters against using their vocations for personal ambition, saying priests and sisters who do so “do more harm to the church.”



From the [Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata](“http:// http://www.ansa.it/web/notizie/rubriche/english/2013/05/08/Pope-tells-nuns-be-mothers-_8670237.html”):
Pope Francis told a group of nuns at Wednesday’s general audience in St Peter’s Square to embrace their maternal side and to “be mothers”.

“Chastity should be fertile, it generates spiritual children,” the pope told some 800 nuns from numerous religious orders.


While emphasising the role of women in the Church, Pope Francis has also maintained a critical position on the majority of American nuns for deviating from official Catholic doctrine by promoting “radical feminist themes” and devoting too much time to social justice while remaining quiet on issues such as birth control and same-sex marriage

Also see the related AP story.

I like this Pope. He gets to the point and likes speaking off the cuff in a way that is refreshing.

A very apt and long overdue rebuke of these egotists and fame chasers.

Sounds like he was addressing the perception of the mean old battle ax nun. I guess you can say so long Sister Mary elephant. While that is a characterization, sadly it is somewhat based on sad reality and now we have a Pope that wants nuns to be models of love.


I am really impressed by how bold he is in calling us to holiness and living our faith to the fullest.

The “social justice only” types?

I hate the way they paraphrase what he said. Never trust the mainstream media. :slight_smile:

Pope Francis, I have to say, is really trying to lead by example. I loved Benedict, but he was too timid. Francis has the orthodoxy and the PR skills. And with this, I’m starting to see Francis has a lot of personality and is very relatable. He recently said that Mary is our example to not be “perpetual teenagers”.

Not even that. A lot of “nuns” have just used “social justice” as a pretense for dissent. I remember when the media talked about the big bad Vatican cracking down on the LCWR, while ignoring one LCWR spokeswoman’s comment about going “beyond the Church, even beyond Jesus” :eek:

There’s one order of sisters called the Apostles of the Interior Life whom I love. They give spiritual direction to younger people (like college-aged). They wear street clothes instead of habits (it is considered less intimidating), but they are, as far as I know, as orthodox as can be. I have a friend who wants to join them.

Really a VERY poor title on ABC’s part. That’s not the half of it.

If you want to read a good analysis see here wdtprs.com/blog/2013/05/pope-francis-outstanding-address-to-international-leaders-of-women-religious/

The address is so much more than ABC is making it out to be.

I think that the Pope want those called to the religious life to be models of love and self-sacrifice, I guess I wouldn’t interpret it to be a comment on either “liberal” or more conservative but all called to the religious life to live out their calling of love, holiness and self-sacrifice. If anyone had attending a Catholic school growing up, there is the characterization of the “mean old nun” and what my husband experienced as well as what we dealt with in our children’s Catholic school was just that, some mean old maid type nun, entrenched in their positions and actions, not willing to think out of the box and met the needs around them because it may inconvenience them, inflexibility and total lack of love.
The joke of Sister Mary Elephant isn’t something that developed in a vacuum it is sadly based on reality. Holy Father wants to end the joke by nun behaving like the should, models of love in an imitation of Christ.

thanks for the link!

Yep,we who attended Cathilic school,experienced at least one nun that was far from pleasant.However,I remember many more that really were very sweet. I think Pope Francis was speaking to those rogue nuns we all see andread about ,who are in direct defiance with Church Doctrine.You know,the ones who traded their habits for pantsuits in the 70’s and never looked back!:rolleyes:

We all had bad experiences and some very good one’s. Unfortunately the bad gets magnified. Nuns are human like anyone else, but they live a semi-sheltered life. Our religious should be aware that what they say or do has a lasting effect on some children. For me, much of the strange behavior by nuns went over my head. But for some children it sticks in the mind and effects their attitude toward the church for years.

This is the reason why we can’t have nice things.

God bless him! I really, really love this.

The Pope is right on! Nothing more important than mothers.

This :thumbsup:

Yet, somehow the comments from the Sisters are positive. If Benedict had said these exact same things he would have been crucified as being mysogenistic and mean, yet somehow Francis is accepted. I don’t get it. It’s a good thing, but I don’t get it at all, it’s like Francis is given a free pass on everything. Maybe it wont last, but I certainly didn’t think it would last as long as it has already, so who knows.

You’re quoting a couple of Hippie stoners? Please. I went through Catholic school in the 1960s, and trust me, we could go to our pastor or principal with any problems. My mom was good friends with a few of the nuns, and we loved our priests.

Criticizing Catholics has always been cool, only now, it’s just average behavior for the mostly pagan media.

I’ll let the Pope be the Pope.


Right, honeymoon’s over. Watch the critics reload ammo. :wink:

He makes a great point. People wring hands over the shortage of spiritual fathers in this country’s parishes, but not much fuss has been made over the almost complete disappearance of spiritual mothers from parish life. Too bad, they were worth the fuss. We miss you, sisters!

Tell your daughters about what used to be and it can be again.

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