Los Angeles priests add support to U.S. women religious

The Presbyteral Council of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles has issued a statement of support for U.S. women religious, who are facing a Vatican Apostolic Visitation.

The statement follows another one of support by the California bishops last November.

Here's what the LA priests wrote:

During this Year for Priests we, the Council of Priests in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, have become more aware of our debt of gratitude to those who support and work with us in ministry. We wish to join our voices with our people and fellow priests throughout the country in expressing gratitude to Women Religious in America for their lives of service to the Church.

This remarkable group of disciples is responsible for establishing our Catholic Schools, educating the immigrant, establishing hospitals to care for the sick and involving themselves in service to the poor and in works of justice for the oppressed.

Sisters living and working in our parishes and Archdiocesan offices bring the gift of a woman’s experience and perspective, helping us achieve greater balance in our judgments and planning as we confront issues of ministry together. We are grateful for their counsel and active roles in ministry with us.

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Indeed many of us were guided and encouraged towards priesthood by these heroic religious women. In that sense, they were our first spiritual directors. Our lives continue to be transformed, challenged and supported by their faithfulness to a lifestyle of simplicity and prayer.

It is with profound gratitude to God and to these women who have worked with us that we affirm and express our appreciation for their part in the building up of the Kingdom of God in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. We commit ourselves to respecting and honoring the testimony of their lives and to encouraging other women to follow in their footsteps and traditions.

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