LCWR National Board Convenes In Florida

The LCWR National Board met in Jacksonville, FL February 16-19, 2001, prior to their day-long joint Board meeting with CMSM on February 20 (see accompanying story).

During the LCWR Board meeting, Judy Cannon, RSM, was honored for her service to LCWR as Interim Executive Director and Carole Shinnick, SSND, was officially welcomed and commissioned into her new role as LCWR Executive Director. Reports from the Presidency and the LCWR offices were presented and the 2002 Budget was approved. The National Board agreed to write letters of support to New Way Ministries and to Archbishop Kelley and retired Bishop Leroy Matthesien. As well, a letter to the USCCB urging a reexamination of their statement supporting the war effort using the “just war” theory and an open letter for publications decrying the anticipated escalation of the war into areas beyond Afghanistan were signed by all National Board members.

LCWR Communications Director, Sheila George, unveiled the renovated LCWR web site to the National Board. The redesigned web site, which will be publicly launched  next month, will include new features such as  password-protected areas for LCWR members and the National Board, with the possibility of developing a similar area for the regions. LCWR members will be notified by WorldMerge message when the new site can be viewed. An on-line survey will be available on the site so members can offer comments and suggestions. A review of the Image Project Study results was followed by a discussion of next steps for the project, leading into the joint Board discussion held on February 20 (see accompanying story).

The National Board also continued its planning for Assembly 2002, regions meetings and the promotion and distribution of Women and Jurisdiction and the upcoming release of the newThreads For the Loom.

The National Board will meet next just prior to the National Assembly in St. Louis, MO. 

CMSM and LCWR Boards Discuss Special Projects

The CMSM and LCWR National Boards met recently at the Marywood Conference and Retreat Center in Jacksonville, FL to discuss important collaborative projects overseen by both conferences.

The morning session focused on the Center for the Study of Religious Life. Center director Barbara Kraemer, OSF, was joined by Chicago Theological Union president Donald Senior, CP, for a presentation on the Center’s work to date, future directions and plans to ensure the center’s long-term viability. In the afternoon, CMSM Communications Director Marita Eddy and LCWR Communications Director Sheila George discussed next steps for the Image Project Study results. The boards agreed to use the Image Project Study results at regional meetings to launch further discussions regarding the image of religious men and women among young adults. 

Neylan Commission Annual Meeting Focuses on Sponsorship

Approximately 100 college presidents, executive staff, and women religious in leadership gathered in Washington, DC, on February 2 for the Neylan Commission Annual Meeting. Speakers and participants addressed the theme, “Beyond the Present: The Shape of Sponsorship in the 21st Century.” The panelists – Barbara Conroy, SC; Marcia Lunz, OSF; Mary Mollison, CSA; Anne Munley, IHM; and Sean Peters, CSJ – described sponsorship as essentially a relationship in which the congregation and the ministry carry on their mission in close collaboration. Sponsorship requires corporate community involvement with the exercise of governance, mutual understanding and influence. In some instances the danger is that sponsors may allow an erosion of commitment and a loss of the congregational legacy because of default. “This is a time for conscious attentiveness to strengthening the shared meaning systems that undergird mission and link congregations and their sponsored institutions,” noted Anne Munley, IHM. Mary Mollison, CSA, stressed that true collaboration does not mean that lay leaders simply join the existing congregational ministry, but that both create something new together.

The Neylan Commission of Colleges and Universities is comprised of more than 118 institutions of higher education founded by congregations of women religious. 

30 LCWR Members To Attend Continental Congress on Vocations

Many religious leaders will attend the upcoming Third Continental Congress on Vocations, April 18-21, 2002, in Montreal, Canada. The LCWR Presidency, a number of National Board members, Executive Director Carole Shinnick, SSND, and Communications Director Sheila George wil attend.  More than 100 US  and Canadian bishops and are expected, as are Vatican representative from a number of the Sacred Congregations. As well, 100 young adults have been invited to attend the Congress.

In addition to workshops on a range of related topics, delegate discussions at the Congress will focus on data gathered from over 70 regional gatherings held across Canada and the United States that discussed questions related to vocations in the Church today.

This Continental Congress on Vocations is held at the invitation of John Paul II following earlier such congresses held in Sao Paulo, Brazil in 1994 and Rome in 1997. The theme of the North American Congress is Vocacion, Don de Dieu, Given for Goad’s People. Deadline for delegate registration for the Congress and housing is March 15, 2002.  More information on the Congress may be found at 


The January 18, 2002 mailing to members on the Image Project Study contained materials incorrectly identifying Sister Mary Johnson. Mary is a Sister of Notre Dame de Namur and an Associate Professor of Sociology and Religious Studies at Emmanuel College in Boston. We apologize to Sr. Johnson and to her congregation for this regrettable error. 


The National Office is aware that UPDATE has been arriving in members’ mailboxes later than usual over the past few months. From what we are able to assertain, this problem is due to the irradiation of mail in the D.C. area (including Silver Spring, MD)  as a result of the anthrax threats to Senate offices on Capitol Hill. All mail is slowed as a result of this extra process. We appreciate your patience, and encourage you to consult our LCWR web site for electronic versions of UPDATE at 

A Note from the Executive Director’s Desk

Meteorologists sometimes abbreviate the Washington weather as “HHH” – that is “hot, hazy, and humid.”  Since arriving at LCWR Office on February 4th, I have personally felt “HHH” – “happy, honored, and humbled.”  It is wonderful to be here at last, to partner daily with the LCWR Directors and staff, and to collaborate with the fine people in the other four conferences at Cameron Street.

Each person has made me feel so welcome and at home.  Staff members, Bob Bozek, Jackie Kelly, Eva McRae, and Pat Nash have each assured me that I have the proper information and materials for navigating each new day.  Suzanne Delaney – in her incredibly calm and focused manner - has been of invaluable help to me these days, as well as prior to my arrival.  Associate Directors Judy Cannon and Eleanor Granger have spent hours patiently going over minutes, agendas, and notes to bring me up to speed on the multiple activities of LCWR.  Communications Director Sheila George has introduced me to the intricacies of communications on a national level – no small task!  The Presidency – Kathleen Pruitt, Mary Mollison, and Mary Ann Zollmann, have checked in periodically to make sure that only a minimum of catastrophes had occurred.  And, lastly, it’s imperative to thank Mary Chris Fellerhoff who left every file and every record in wonderful order.

In particular, I want to thank, Mary Mollison who has been my “shepherd” since late December, gently guiding and offering suggestions – a helpful presence that never hovered, but always assured me she was available.  And the entire conference owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to Judy Cannon who shouldered double responsibility with grace and generosity since Mary Chris’s departure.  Without missing a beat, Judy continued her numerous commitments in the social concerns area, while providing presence and continuity for the conference as Interim Director.

So, now I’m here, looking forward to serving you.  I want you to know how welcome you are to call, to contact, to come by.  I look forward to meeting you and to being of service to you in whatever way is possible.  So, don’t be shy! -- Carole Shinnick, SSND 

LRCR 2002 Legal Seminar Announced - The Legal Resource Center for Religious is proud to present the 2002 Legal Seminar April 3 -7, 2002 at the Joseph S. Koury Convention Center/Sheraton Greensboro Hotel at Four Seasons in Greensboro, NC.  General Sessions include  “Prophetic Living, The Law and Religious Life”, “The Legal, Ethical and Financial Aspects of Treatment Policies for Members” and “The Use, Abuse and Neglect of the EIN" on the tax identification number.  Workshops and track sessions will deal with laws and policies regarding both civil disobedience and ecclesiastical dissent; liability of institutes for tort actions against members; contractual issues between a diocese and religious community and so much more.  For more details and application form check the website at or call 301/589-8143 
At the Legal Seminar, Christian Brothers Services will offer  a “Risk Management Workshop” Thursday, April 4, 2002 from 10 am to 3 pm.  For more details go to the LRCR website or call Karen DiVito at 800/807-0100, ext. 2935 or register on-line at 

Days of Contemplation 2002  
Monthly Reflection: Mary Mollison, CSA

As we continue our monthly Day of Contemplation and the rhetoric of the "war on terrorism" expands, may we listen deeply within our hearts to hear where we are being called in our ordinary daily living to expand right relationships.  How is nonviolence becoming a way of life? 

For Your Information

Orientation to Financial Management Seminar

NATRI will hold Orientation to Financial Management Seminar 2002, May 31 - June 4, 2002 at Bon Secours Spiritual Center, Marriottsville, MD. This annual program provides an opportunity for leaders who have oversight of the finance office and new finance officers to participate in a concentrated learning experience about the many aspects of financial management in a religious institute.  Topics include: canon and civil law, accounting, planning and forecasting, risk management, investments, government programs, human resources and facilities management.  There will also be an opportunity to raise questions and concerns through evening forums.  For more information contact NATRI at 301/587-7776 or email 

NRVC Convocation 2002

The National Religious Vocation Conference will hold Dimensions of Diveristy... Our Response, September 5-9, 2002, in San Antonio, TX.  It will focus on areas of diversity - spiritual, generational, sexual, cultural and racial.  Main speakers are:  Donna Markham, OP; Sean Sammon, FMS; Marie Chin, RSM and Rev. Virgilio Elizondo.  For registration materials call or e-mail the NRVC office at 773-363-5454 -

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