But the Roman Catholic Church is on something of a roll recently. Sisters Farley and Johnson are in good company. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a statement condemning the Leadership Conference of Women Religious in the United States. Concern was centered around three areas: Speeches given at LCWR assemblies (Sister Laurie Brink is named, with presumed reference to a 2007 keynote address in which she calls her fellow sisters back to the margins, where women religious have always lived and worked with those whom society ignores), public statements made in opposition to the bishops on issues like women's ordination and homosexuality (and though not named in this statement, it has to include healthcare), and finally, "radical feminism." I admit to being suspicious as to what the Congregation thinks "radical feminist themes" are. They do not state them, other than an ominous reference to "some commentaries on 'patriarchy.'" (I can't help but see 'air quotes' here . . . around this 'alleged' 'patriarchy.')
The nine-state "Nuns on the Bus" tour kicked off in Des Moines on June 17th "to stand with people in need and to be witnesses for economic justice" as the nuns' response to this rebuke of their work on justice for women and poor people.
Because whether they are nuns or scholars, preachers or evangelists, Catholic or Protestant, women theologians haven't been defeated yet.
I'm pretty sure that we never will be.