Doctrine committee has Johnson's letter, will respond

by Dan Morris-Young

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BELLEVUE, WASH. -- The U.S. bishops’ committee on doctrine will respond soon by letter to theologian Sr. Elizabeth Johnson whose 2007 book, Quest for the Living God: Mapping Frontiers in the Theology of God, was severely criticized by the group, according to the executive director of the bishops’ Secretariat for Doctrine.

The committee will be thanking the Sister of St. Joseph, a professor of theology at Fordham University in New York, for her recent 38-page letter countering the doctrinal unit’s critique of her work, Capuchin Fr. Thomas Weinandy told NCR early today (June 15).

“The letter will acknowledge receiving her letter and thank her for sending her response to the committee and saying the committee would also study her response very thoroughly and at a future date get back to her.”

Weinandy said it was not yet clearly decided who will draft the letter, but that it could be Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington who heads the committee.

No date for the committee’s response has been determined, the priest added, but felt it would be some time.

[Dan Morris-Young is NCR West Coast correspondent. Watch the Web site for more reports from Bellevue, Wash., and the bishops meeting.]

Editor's Note: An updated and longer version of this article has been posted here: Bishops' response to rebuked theologian could take months. Commenting will be shut off on this page to focus comments on the updated version.

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