Saturday, September 10, 2016

Ferrara: apostolic constitution Vultum Dei Quaerere bodes ill for future of cloistered convents

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In Part III of what he calls "Ominous Power Grabs," Christopher A. Ferrara, "Francis Attacks the Cloistered Convents" (CFN, July 26, 2016), outlines the implications of the apostolic constitution Vultum Dei Quaerere for cloisters, given that the document mandates they immediately join 'federations' to be governed by Presidents and Councils, requiring the adoptation of new constitutions and 'forms of cloister' to be approved by the Vatican's centralizing control over all religious orders. Repealing all prior papal legislation mandating the strictness of major and minor 'papal enclosures' of nuns (e.g., by Pius XII and John Paul II), Francis' apostolic constitution mandates that even papal enclosures of nuns be opened to the public for Eucharistic adoration and permit the routine coming and going of nuns from their enclosures for such things as "specific courses on formation outside their monastery," including the recommended use of the Internet for their 'formation' and 'cooperation' with other convents.

Part I of the series is devoted to the new means of forcing the 'retirement' of bishops by motu proprio, especially troublesome when they seem in some cases ideologically motivated and to focus on prelates perceived as doctrinally and liturgically conservative, such as Bishops Tebartz-van Elstm of Limburg, Germany; Livieres Plano of Ciudad del Este, Paraguay; Oliveri of Albenga, Italy; Finn of Cansas City/St. Joseph, Missouri; and Nienstedt of Minneapolis. Whatever the accusations against them, they seem to dwindle in the presence of the notorious homosexual predator, Mgsr Battista Ricca, whom Francis appointed head of his papal household.

Part II reports on a rescript from the Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life that would in essence "block the formation of any new traditionally-oriented society of diocesan right by local bishops sympathetic to Tradition unless the Vatican was satisfied with the 'originality' of it's 'charism,' failing which any attempt to erect the society would be void and without effect."

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