~ by Rhina Guidos, Global Sisters Report
In an early June meeting of women and men religious from Latin America and the Caribbean, the leader of a U.S. group of sisters spoke about church life in the U.S., its brokenness and the country’s polarization, and asked them to consider the possibility of a “new beginning” that would include groups of consecrated life from all corners of the Americas.
“No more Canada, U.S., Central America, South America,” Sr. Carol Zinn, executive director of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), said to those gathered June 2 for a board meeting of the Confederation of Latin American and Caribbean Religious (CLAR) in Lima, Peru. “[Let’s] think about consecrated life of the Americas and still celebrate Canada, the United States, Central America, South America.”
Those gathered for the CLAR meeting, which included general secretaries and presidents of conferences from Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as consulting theologians, spoke of new structures and systems, customs and practices to champion the mission of the church among the poor and vulnerable. Their vision is one of transformation in the church, where clericalism, personal interests and power-seeking among some church members are set aside.
Sr. Carol asked for prayers for LCWR as it takes a “contemplative time to step back and to ask God: What is ours to do as leaders of consecrated life of women? What is ours to do in a country and a church that is so polarized?” she said.
“Pray for us because we have made a commitment that our work is to be in those uncomfortable situations of polarization. How to listen deeply and then how to discern, how do we go together to God?”