Archbishop Peter Sartain of Seattle Praises Women Religious Conference

Releases Statement Assuring Commitment In Addressing Issues of Reform

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ST. LOUIS, Missouri, AUG. 13, 2012 (Zenit.org).- Archbishop Peter Sartain of Seattle released a statement coinciding with the conclusion of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious’ (LCWR) annual assembly. The Archbishop of Seattle was appointed the Holy See’s delegate to the LCWR following the release of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s (CDF) "Doctrinal Assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious." The report called for a reform within the Leadership Conference.

The annual assembly concluded last Friday and saw the participation of over 900 delegates representing 80% of the United States women religious in the country. During the conference LCWR delegates also discussed their response to the report issued by the CDF (CDF) last April.

In his statement, Archbishop Sartain praised the contributions and continued work of the LCWR in the United States.

Archbishop Peter Sartain of Seattle has released a statement praising the lasting contribution and continued work of religious women in the United States, for which, he says, they deserve our respect, support, thanks and prayers.

"As an association of women religious, the LCWR brings unique gifts to its members and to the Church at large. This uniqueness includes sensitivity to suffering, whether in Latin America or the inner-city; whether in the life of an unborn child or the victim of human trafficking," the statement read.

The American prelate also assured his commitment to addressing the issues raised by the CDF’s Doctrinal Assessment “in an atmosphere of prayer and respectful dialogue.”

"We must also work toward clearing up any misunderstandings, and I remain truly hopeful that we will work together without compromising Church teaching or the important role of the LCWR. I look forward to our continued discussions as we collaborate in promoting consecrated life in the United States," the Archbishop’s statement read.

According to Vatican Radio, Franciscan Sister Pat Farrell, outgoing president of the LCWR said that the organization said would begin dialogue with Archbishop Sartain, “from a stance of deep prayer that values mutual respect, careful listening and open dialogue”. The Archbishop is expected to attend the organization's board meeting August 11.

During the assembly, members also passed a resolution calling on Congress to pass the Dream Act and comprehensive immigration reform that includes the reunification of families and a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants living in the United States. They passed a second resolution that committed them to work for the abolition of human trafficking, calling it a form of modern day slavery.