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In this issue: Pope Benedict XVI meets another group of survivors; Bishop Robinson's thoughts after his book tour; Remaining seats on Board of Trustees filled; Long-time CTA leaders retire; American Nuns oppose interdiction; Bishops say no to liturgy translation; Biblical women leaders.

Pope Visits Australia, Meets with Abuse Victims

Pope Benedict XVI ended his visit to Australia on Monday, July 21 by meeting with victims of sexual abuse inflicted by Roman Catholic clergy. The meeting capped Benedict's July 12-21 visit to Sydney, Australia, for World Youth Day. During the meeting, the Pope conducted a private Mass and spoke with four abuse victims — two men and two women — at a cathedral in Sydney shortly before leaving Australia. The meeting comes on the heels of a similar one in the United States in April. It also followed an apology – again similar to the one made en route to the U.S. – issued while the Pope was flying to Australia.

For more information on those meetings, click on the following links:
For a look at other topics the Pope mentioned, click here.

Bishop Robinson Praises VOTF

On Bishop Robinson’s return to Australia after his U.S./Canada tour, he responded to the support he received from American audiences and the attempts to dissuade him from the book tour. Among his words were an assessment of VOTF members he met while here:
“I met many wonderful and inspiring people who welcomed me and invited me into their homes. Most were from the organization called Voice of the Faithful, that started in Boston in 2002 in response to the revelations of sexual abuse there and wants to see a comprehensive response to those revelations. If this makes them "not in communion" with the church, then we all have a most serious problem!!”
Click here to see more of what Bishop Robinson said about his tour.


Council Fills Out Remaining Seats on the Board of Trustees
At its meeting on June 3, 2008, the Board of Trustees appointed Ron DuBois (Region 1) and Ed Wilson (Region 2) as the elected representatives of the National Representative Council to the Board.

The NRC re-elected Ron DuBois to a second term and elected Ed Wilson to fill the seat vacated when Dan Bartley became President in March.

The appointments mean that all eleven seats on the Board are full once again.

Four seats will become vacant in June 2009 when the 3-year terms of Bill Casey, John Hushon, Elia Marnik, and Jim Post (appointed to fill the unexpired term of David O'Brien who resigned earlier this year) expire. The Trustee Nominating Committee of the Board will begin a search for candidates well in advance of the expiration date.

The full list of Trustees for Fiscal Year 2009 is:

  • Dan Bartley (Long Island, NY)
  • Bill Casey, chair (Alexandria, VA)
  • Ron DuBois (Braintree, MA)
  • Mary Pat Fox (New York, NY)
  • Svea Fraser (Wellesley, MA)
  • John Hushon (Naples, FL)
  • Elia Marnik (Reading, MA)
  • Jayne O'Donnell (West Hartford, CT)
  • Jim Post (Wellesley, MA)
  • Dan Sullivan (New Canaan, CT)
  • Ed Wilson (Brooklyn, NY)

VOTF Trustees Congratulate Dan and Sheila Daley of Call to Action
The Board of Trustees of Voice of the Faithful recently sent a letter of appreciation to Dan and Sheila Daley of Call to Action as they step down from their leadership positions.

Speaking Out
Two VOTF members made their voices heard in the July 11 issue of the National Catholic Reporter. To see what John Ryan and Sister Maureen Turlish had to say to the Editors of the National Catholic Reporter click here and then scroll down to find the letters -- look for the tagline "Lay ministry" for John's post and the line "Fr. Maciel" for Sister Maureen's.   

SITE-Seeing, Etc.

Coalition of American Nuns Opposes Interdiction
On June 26, 2008, Archbishop Raymond Leo Burke removed Sister Louise Lears, SC, from the Pastoral Team of Saint Cronan Parish and placed her under an interdict, which prohibits the reception of the Sacraments. Her offense? She supported the ordination of two women to the Roman Catholic Priesthood in November 2007 in St. Louis. In late December 2007, the Archbishop delivered to Sister Louise a formal summons, accusing her of four canon law violations. He followed that with the formal interdiction just before his elevation to a new Vatican post: prefect of the church’s highest canonical court in Rome.

The National Coalition of American Nuns* and the people of St. Cronan’s parish are circulating a petition to show their support Sister Louise. You can read the details here.

For background on the case, click here.

* Founded in 1969, the National Coalition of American Nuns is a Roman Catholic organization of women religious dedicated to studying, working and speaking out on issues of human rights and justice in Church and society.

Bishops Say No to Liturgy Translation
In a relatively rare action, U.S. bishops have formally rejected a new translation of the Roman Missal that the Vatican was eager to institute. First hint that the translation would not win automatic approval came during the Spring meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops when some spoke out against awkward wordings and obscure references. The translation failed to win the votes needed for approval there, so the final vote hinged on ballots mailed to bishops who had missed the meeting. Final tally? Bishops said no. You can read the story here.

Also Lost in Translation? Stories of Women in the Bible
Although any Bible reader can recall stories of St. Mary of Magdela and other women in Scriptures, when it comes to Sunday Masses the lectionary texts focus almost entirely on what happened to the men in the Bible. Now there’s a move under way to restore some of those lost stories.

In the Vineyard
July 25, 2008

Volume 7, Issue 13
Printer Friendly Version (PDF)

Page One

Pope Expounds Upon Need to Care for Environment

Bishop Robinson to Cardinal Re: It’s Not So

Raising Awareness of Biblical Women Leaders

Prayerful Voice

Survivor Support Working Group

Priest Support Working Group

Structural Change Working Group

Voice of Renewal/Lay Education

Protecting Our Children



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