Cleansing Fire

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Stand Up For Freedom June 8, 2012 in Canandaigua

June 6th, 2012, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Once again, a silent procession is planned, walking the two blocks from St. Mary Canandaigua (corner of Rte. 332 at Rte 21) to the Ontario County Courthouse.  Once again, there will be signage of famous pro-Religious Freedom quotations from many faiths.  Once again, the procession will have no political signage, no chanting, shouts or confrontation.  The gathering will begin around 11:30 and by 11:45, after registration, getting information and a button to wear, the group will begin to move toward the courthouse.  Last time (March 23, 2012) over 500 people showed up.  Read the results here.

It appears that parents have been particularly comfortable bringing their children, and older folks are happy with the short procession, which is not too difficult.  There will again be parking at St. Mary, and also at 3 neighboring churches (watch for signage.)  There will be no speeches, but plenty of chance to meet others with the same concerns, from various churches.

 

Very soon we will  post information on the USCCB’s call for a Fortnight For Freedom.  St. Mary Canandaigua is leading the effort for an entire two weeks of activity, all held at Notre Dame Retreat House.  Outstanding speakers will be on hand, Theater of the Word will have 3 productions, there will be movies, worship and much more.  See website www.FestivalforFreedom.com for evolving details.  Meanwhile, see you in Canandaigua on June 8th!  While you are in Canandaigua, if you are unfamiliar with the Notre Dame Retreat Center, you might take a short 6 mile trip up the hill to see the beautiful location overlooking Canandaigua Lake.

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8 Responses to “Stand Up For Freedom June 8, 2012 in Canandaigua”

  1. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    I wonder if Bishop Clark and any priests, deacons and nuns from the diocese will be there?

  2. avatar annonymouse says:

    Richard – i was at the Rochester “Stand up for Freedom” last time, and Jann Armantrout from the Diocese office spoke, a priest of the diocese spoke, and I recognized at least a couple deacons present. Granted, the clerical presence was underwhelming, but it’s not like there was zero representation.

    If I’m not mistaken, isn’t the Canandaigua event being organized by a deacon, and doesn’t it start at St. Mary’s Church?

  3. avatar Diane Harris says:

    On March 23 in Canandaigua there were two deacons and a seminarian. Fr. Mull said (Lenten) Mass immediately afterward. There were a number of Protestant clergy attending, who were stating it is not just a Catholic issue, that they stand with us.

  4. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    Thanks. Hope springs eternal.

  5. avatar 14860 says:

    This is an essential part of Religious Freedom.

    Franciscan Leadership Declares Solidarity With Catholic Sisters
    American Provinces Release Letter to the LCWR
    NEW YORK — June 7, 2012 — As follow-up to the recent Vatican assessment of the Leadership
    Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), the leaders of seven entities of Franciscan friars have
    released a letter to the Catholic sisters expressing their strong support.
    Several weeks ago, the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) released its
    assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, the support system and public
    voice of some 1500 leaders of women’s congregations, representing over 80% of the women
    religious in the United States. This assessment was highly critical of the LCWR and demanded
    changes in its organization and activities. Like many American Catholics, Franciscan friars across
    the country have been deeply concerned by this document, especially its impact on their sisters in
    religious life, many of whom belong to Franciscan congregations.
    The provincial ministers of the seven provinces of the Order of Friars Minor in the United States,
    representing more than 1250 religious men, released the following statement to express their
    appreciation of the invaluable ministry of American religious women and to extend their support
    to the members of the LCWR, as they attempt to respond to the concerns expressed in the Vatican
    directives.
    ———————————————————————————————————————
    May 31, 2012
    Open Letter to the United States Catholic Sisters
    We, the Leadership of the Friars Minor of the United States, write today as your brothers in the
    vowed religious life who, like you, have great love for our Church and for the people whom we
    are privileged to serve. We write at a time of heightened polarization and even animosity in our
    nation and Church, with deep concern that the recent Vatican Doctrinal Assessment of the
    Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) may inadvertently fuel the current climate
    of division and confusion. We write, too, as a public sign of our solidarity with you as you
    endure this very difficult moment. We are privileged to share with you the journey of religious
    life. Like you, we strive in all that we do to build up the People of God.
    As religious brothers in the Franciscan tradition, we are rooted in a stance of gratitude that
    flows from awareness of the myriad ways that God is disclosed and made manifest in the world.
    For us, there can be no dispute that God has been and continues to be revealed through the
    faithful (and often unsung) witness of religious women in the United States. Thus we note with
    appreciation that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) “acknowledges with
    gratitude the great contributions of women Religious to the Church of the United States as seen
    particularly in the many schools, hospitals, and institutions of support for the poor which have
    been founded and staffed by Religious over the years.” We certainly know how much our
    service has been enriched by the many gifts you bring to these ministries.
    However, your gift to the Church is not only one of service, but also one of courageous
    discernment. The late 20th century and the beginning of this century have been times of great
    social, political and cultural upheaval and change. Such contextual changes require us, as
    faithful members of the Church, to pose questions that at first may appear to be controversial or
    even unfaithful, but in fact are asked precisely so that we might live authentically the charisms
    we have received, even as we respond to the “signs of the times.” This is the charge that we as
    religious have received through the “Decree on the Renewal of Religious Life” from the Second
    Vatican Council and subsequent statements of the Church on religious life. We believe that your
    willingness to reflect on many of the questions faced by contemporary society is an expression
    of your determination to be faithful to the Gospel, the Church, the invitation from Vatican II and
    your own religious charisms. We remain thankful for and edified by your courage to engage in
    such reflection despite the ever?present risk of misunderstanding.
    Moreover, we are concerned that the tone and direction set forth in the Doctrinal Assessment
    of LCWR are excessive, given the evidence raised. The efforts of LCWR to facilitate honest and
    faithful dialogue on critical issues of our times must not result in a level of ecclesial oversight
    that could, in effect, quash all further discernment. Further, questioning your adherence to
    Church teaching by your “remaining silent” on certain ethical issues seems to us a charge that
    could be leveled against many groups in the Church, and fails to appreciate both the larger
    cultural context and the particular parameters of expertise within which we all operate. Finally,
    when there appears to be honest disagreement on the application of moral principles to public
    policy, it is not equivalent to questioning the authority of the Church’s magisterium. Although
    the Catholic moral tradition speaks of agreement regarding moral principles, it also – from the
    Middle Ages through today – speaks of appropriate disagreement regarding specific application
    of these principles. Unfortunately, the public communications media in the U.S. may not
    recognize this distinction. Rather than excessive oversight of LCWR, perhaps a better service to
    the people of God might be a renewed effort to articulate the nuances of our complex moral
    tradition. This can be a teaching moment rather than a moment of regulation ?? an opportunity
    to bring our faith to bear on the complexity of public policy particularly in the midst of our
    quadrennial elections.
    Finally, we realize and appreciate, as we are sure do you, the proper and right role of the
    bishops as it is set out in Mutuae Relationes to provide leadership and guidance to religious
    institutions.i However, the same document clearly states:
    since it is of utmost importance that the council of major superiors collaborate
    diligently and in a spirit of trust with episcopal conferences, ‘it is desirable that
    questions having reference to both bishops and religious should be dealt with by
    mixed commissions consisting of bishops and major religious superiors, men or
    women. …Such a mixed commission should be structured in such a way that
    even if the right of ultimate decision making is to be always left to councils or
    conferences, according to the respective competencies, it can, as an organism of
    mutual counsel, liaison, communication, study and reflection, achieve its
    purpose. (#63)
    We trust that CDF was attempting to follow their counsel from Mutuae Relationes; however, we
    fear that in today’s public media world their action easily could be misunderstood. We hope
    that our bishops will take particular care to see that the way they take action is as important as
    the actions themselves in serving the People of God. Otherwise, their efforts will surely be
    misunderstood and polarizing.
    Lastly, we appreciate the approach that you at LCWR have taken to enter into a time of
    discernment, rather than immediately making public statements that could be construed as
    “opposing the bishops” after the release of the Doctrinal Assessment. The rancor and incivility
    of public conversation in the United States at this time make the possibility of productive
    dialogue more difficult to achieve. We pray that the future conversation between LCWR and
    CDF might provide an example to the larger world of respectful, civil dialog. Such dialog will
    require a degree of mutuality, trust and honesty that is absent from much of our world. We
    trust that you will continue your efforts to live out this principle, and we trust and pray that our
    bishops will do the same.
    Please be assured of our on?going support, prayers, respect, and gratitude for your living
    example of the following of Christ in our times.
    Fraternally,
    Leadership of Franciscan (O.F.M.) Provinces of the United States
    Assumption BVM Province
    Franklin, WI, U.S.A.
    Holy Name Province
    New York, NY, U.S.A.
    Immaculate Conception Province
    New York, NY, U.S.A.
    Our Lady of Guadalupe Province
    Sacred Heart Province
    St. Louis, MO, U.S.A.
    Saint Barbara Province
    Oakland, CA, U.S.A.
    Saint John the Baptist Province
    Cincinnati, OH, U.S.A.
    Albuquerque, NM, U.S.A.
    i Sacred Congregation for Religious and for Secular Institutes, Directives for the Mutual Relations Between Bishops
    and Religious in the Church, Rome, May 14, 1978
    Questions and photo requests should be directed to Jocelyn Thomas, HNP director of
    communications, at 646-473-0265 ext. 321 or 732-829-1513 (mobile) or jthomas@hnp.org.
    Thank Franciscan Friars from whom I received a high school and college education. Also thank you to the Sisters of Mercy, Allegany Franciscan Sisters as well a the Sisters of St. Joseph of Rochester and the Sisters of St Joseph of Carondalet for the wonderful influence they have and on my life.

  6. avatar annonymouse says:

    So let me get this straight – these Friars fear that the Vatican’s assessment may be “excessive” and that it may cause further division, and so they feel free to publicly dissent from our Church’s leadership? Does that not cause further division? Does that not foment more dissent and less respect of the Magisterium?

    This blatant lack of humility must have St. Francis spinning in his grave. How far to have strayed from their original charism – but I think Francis probably expected that.

  7. avatar militia says:

    Seems like a long-winded self-congratulatory excuse for disobedience to God, which should not be confused with Religious Freedom under the state. This kind of fuzzy thinking lies at the base of the very reasons for reprimanding the dissidents and protecting the uninformed. The argument given echoes the excuse that since God gave us Free Will He must want us to sin. Aaaarrggghhh!

  8. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    We hope that these people have a change of heart. If not, hopefully, they will die out. Let the vocations go to other, obediant and faithful orders.


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