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July 1, 2009

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My Eight-Year-Old Self Can't Believe Any Of This

There are only 60,000 nuns left in the US Catholic Church.And the Vatican wants to start an inquisition into what’s left of the orders, ‘cause some o’ them ladies just maybe ain’t been doin’ what they’re told.

Well, that’s just great. Thank you, Pope Benedict - you’re so evil, you’ve got me rooting for nuns. (It’s like in Return of the Jedi, when you realize Darth Vader isn’t really the real bad guy.)

Tim-sig.gif
Posted July 1, 2009 at 8:05 | Comments (2) | Permasnark
File under: Briefly Noted, Society/Culture

Comments

Hmm, why wouldn't you root for nuns? I guess I've always been positively impressed by the few nuns I've encountered.

That's an amazing, sharp article, however. It paints a picture of an organization that is about to choke to death on its own arrogant patriarchy. There's something about the focus of todays' nuns on real work out in the real world that transforms the discussion from abstract sociopolitical narrative analysis into a visceral contemplation of humans struggling with all the love, meaning, and attachment of religious dedication. It makes me ache in sympathy for most of my Roman Catholic friends, so many of whom are miserably unhappy about what's happening to their church. Watching one's religious community break apart can be as painful as losing a lover.

Nuns are indeed awesome. However, this insight has been wisdom hard-won in my adult life, whereas between the ages of five and eight (and for some time after), I lived in what was literally holy terror of nuns, who were primarily responsible for my education and (gulp) discipline, two responsibilities for which I was singularly resistant and ungrateful.

Myself, I'm likewise sympathetic for my former church. In my life, I've tried to be many other things, but I can't help but be Catholic, even if (as with Stephen Dedalus) the Jesuit strain is injected the wrong way.

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