The LCWR has expressed regret that two years of private meetings with the Vatican doctrinal congregation have 'broken down' resulting in the development of 'mistrust', reports NCR Online.
But the leaders also rededicated their organisation to continued dialogue with Vatican officials, saying: 'the continuation of such conversation may be one of the most critical endeavours we, as leaders, can pursue for the sake of the world, the Church, and religious life.'
'In our meetings at the [Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith (CDF)], [the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR)] was saddened to learn that impressions of the organisation in the past decades have become institutionalised in the Vatican, and these institutionalised perceptions have led to judgments and ultimately to the doctrinal assessment,' the LCWR leaders said in a statement released on Thursday.
'During the meeting it became evident that despite maximum efforts through the years, communication has broken down and as a result, mistrust has developed. What created an opening toward dialogue in this meeting was hearing first-hand the way the CDF perceives LCWR. We do not recognise ourselves in the doctrinal assessment of the conference and realise that, despite that fact, our attempts to clarify misperceptions have led to deeper misunderstandings.'
LCWR has been under a cloak of doctrinal congregation suspicion since 2009, when the Vatican congregation said it was looking into unresolved issues dating back to 2001. In 2012, the doctrinal congregation, having completed its doctrinal assessment, issued a reform mandate. Two years of further discussions set the scene for the LCWR leadership visit to Rome and its meeting at the CDF April 30.