Traditional nuns in Pennsylvania will ‘stand up and fight’ Vatican’s attack on contemplative life 

‘These holy women need the fierce protection and ongoing support of Catholic laity in the face of a coordinated onslaught by this papacy to undermine, secularize, and monetize this cloistered order.’Featured Image Jim Hale / LifeSiteNews

Tue Nov 23, 2021 – 12:33 pm EST

FAIRFIELD, Pennsylvania (LifeSiteNews) — A community of traditional nuns have rejected Vatican instructions aimed at undermining their contemplative way of life.

Catherine Bauer, the official spokeswoman for the traditional Carmelite nuns of Fairfield, Pennsylvania, has given an interview to Catholic World Report explaining the situation of these nuns in the wake of a recent apostolic visitation that took place at the end of September. She described the changes being demanded by Rome since the publication of the Vatican’s 2018 instruction Cor Orans and made it clear that the Carmelite nuns at Fairfield and in Valparaiso, Nebraska “have chosen to stand up and fight.”

“We believe there are those in leadership in Rome who believe that contemplative orders don’t have a place in the Church any longer,” Bauer told Catholic World Report this month.

The Vatican instruction Cor Orans directs the individual contemplative orders that hitherto have been autonomous to join federations, thereby undercutting their individuality and their own charisms. The reform is to be done, according to this document, in light of the Second Vatican Council and “changed socio-cultural conditions.”

The Fairfield Carmelites include 25 nuns and receive about 100 inquiries per year. They have a hermit priest as their chaplain, Father Maximilian Mary Dean, who offers for them the traditional Latin Mass. They live a traditional Carmelite cloistered life with much austerity and many hours of prayer.

LifeSiteNews reporter Jim Hale interviewed Father Dean in October, and the hermit explained then that the September visitation aimed at undermining the charism of the traditional Carmelite nuns, essentially urging them to join larger associations, to open up their monastery to the outside world. Father Dean called this move, organized by Cardinal João Braz de Aviz, the head of the Congregation for Religious Life, a plan to “overhaul” contemplative orders.  From his own experience with other tradition-minded orders such as the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, but also with the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration in Hanceville, Alabama (founded by Mother Angelica), he knows that these apostolic visitations are intended to undermine traditional ways of life in monasteries.

In her November 20 interview with Catholic World Report, Catherine Bauer explained how, under the new reform rules inspired by Cor Orans, the Carmelite nuns would lose their autonomy, their oversight of the formation of their novices, and their financial independence. “It gives officials in the Holy See access to the financial assets of the nuns and their properties,” she said. “It gives them the ability to take control of the monastery, evict the nuns, and then have financial control over the property.”

Furthermore, Miss Bauer also described some of the details of the recent apostolic visitation, during which the nuns were visited by two Carmelite nuns and one Carmelite father at the behest of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life in Rome.

One of the defenders of this visitation and a critic of the Fairfield and Valparaiso nuns is Sister Gabriela (edit nvp: world champion internet blogger and commentator of copious uncloistered comments) of the Incarnation of the Carmelites in Flemington, New Jersey. As LifeSiteNews has reliably learned, she has been charged with rewriting the traditional 1990 Discalced Carmelite Constitutions to conform with Cor Orans. Without disclaiming her prominent role in the Bergoglian reform of the Carmelite contemplative orders, she is now posting numerous articles critical of the Farifield nuns, trying to show them to be irrational and disobedient. She posted some of these articles on the website, which has dedicated itself to defending Pope Francis against any critic who opposes his revolutionary agenda.

As Miss Bauer stated, the official reason the visitation took place was related to the transfer of a group of Carmelite nuns from a Philadelphia convent in 2021. LifeSiteNews reported that the traditional Carmelites from the Fairfield/Valparaiso Carmelite houses saw themselves discouraged from assisting a group of aging Carmelites in Philadelphia after Archbishop Charles Chaput had left his position and his successor, Archbishop Nelson J. Perez, had taken over. The younger nuns met with obstacles and were not able to continue to live out their traditional charism with the traditional Mass in Philadelphia, and therefore they left.

Miss Bauer explained the situation as follows:

(read the rest):

10 thoughts on “Traditional nuns in Pennsylvania will ‘stand up and fight’ Vatican’s attack on contemplative life ”

  1. I hope everyone remembers this ongoing, comprehensive persecution of orthodox traditional Catholics began as a result of the putsch of 2013.
    There was, precedent to the putsch, an investigation into the LCWR by Pope Benedict XVI, led by Arbp Sartain, to determine if there was widespread, systemic heresy and departures from obedience within the vast majority of Religious, as represented by LCWR. There obviously was – the only question was gaining a firm grasp on how deep the rot went.
    That investigation ended with the resignation by Pope BXVI from active governance of the Church, resigning the See of Rome. Shortly after that, Arbp Sartain quickly concluded his investigation of LCWR asserting these Religious were in full compliance, no deviations found anywhere in the world – investigation over. Shortly after that, new Bishop of Rome Bergoglio opened a different investigation of orthodox traditional FFI, who were quickly found to be in full deviation from obedience and dogmatic compliance. And the purge of Tradition – wherever it could be found had begun. This investigation, this purge, has never ended but gained force and comprehensiveness over time.
    This all began with the putsch of 2013, because the anti-church, the Vatican II Nu Church, was directly threatened by actions of Pope Benedict XVI who was taking meaningful and decisive actions against them. In the aftermath every action of Nu Church has been to establish their anti-church and eradicate the actual Catholic Church which is connected, as She has always been, via the Magisterium to the Dogmatic Sacred Deposit of Faith. The aim of these criminals is to eradicate orthodox traditional Catholicism (Christianity), leaving only the Nu Church (Humanism), connected to the only magisterium they have – Vatican II, always and only Vatican II.
    And I duly note that the dishonesty that emanates, not like smoke but flames from the Vatican into the world, is replecated in governments that comprehensively imitate the illegitimate actions of the 2013 pirates. This worldwide crisis of governance is caused by the crisis in the Catholic Church that has never been met by those who can meet it. We have accepted the putsch and all its conclusions. And the world is paying the price for our cowardice and complicity. If we truly believe the Catholic Church is what we proclaim it is – the meeting point between God in Heaven and Mankind on earth – then it is reasonable to arrive at this conclusion.

  2. Thank you Jesus. Thank you Mary. Daily prayers for our Carmelites.
    (I wish I knew how I received a letter that said the sisters of Fairfield actually didn’t get a visitation, but rather went to Rome and had a lovely inspiring visit.?)

  3. I can’t help but think of the Carmelites in the context of the Fr. Jackson situation. There’s a full scale war on tradition happening all around us. Doesn’t mean he’s definitely innocent, but the motive for taking out a beloved FSSP priest and the author of the definitive book of our time on the TLM couldn’t be more obvious.
    But Fr. Jackson is another topic for another day. God bless the Carmelites, and a blessed Thanksgiving to all.

  4. Dear Sir, Thank you for informing me that I have “been charged with rewriting the traditional 1990 Discalced Carmelite Constitutions to conform with Cor Orans.” I first heard about this honor from the original LifeSiteNews article which you are re-printing. Since I have never received any notification of this prestigious position from the Vatican, I am forced to believe that the decree got lost in the mail, or jumped overboard or went AWOL. Maybe I should sue the post office???

    1. Sr. Gabriela of the Incarnation, the sarcastic and silly tone of your comments on a gravely serious matter is disturbing. Sarcasm is rooted in hatred. St. Theresa of Avila pray for us!

      1. But, Katie, it’s terribly funny to read that I have been charged with rewriting the 1990 Constitutions when it’s not true! Archbishop Carballo is organizing an international commission to do that. You can ask Mother Stella-Marie.I sent her 2 copies of his letter.

      2. I believe she is saying in a light-hearted way that she isn’t planning to sue Catholic World Report or Ms. Bauer for libel.

      3. Sr. G
        An “international commission” is the perfect forum for Nu Church to produce its documents. Thank you for exposing it.
        The contemplatives don’t need your permission or the humanists of the International Commission. Throughout time they have been special souls who live in isolation from the world to remain closer, thereby, to God. The world can never understand them. The “International Commission” can never understand them, nor likely can Arbp Carballo. And I doubt you do.
        I think the Contemplatives, like most of us, see the threat in all its hideousness, which seeks to take out the “heart” (Cor) of who they are.
        What the Bishop of Rome Bergoglio is trying to do with Cor Orans is set service against adoration and prayer. As with everything a leftist does, opposition and conflict is the pathway to change. But these are not in conflict in the Divine Economy – they mutually support one another, as indicated by the story of Mary and Martha, shortly before Christ’s Crucifixion on the Cross.
        [38] Now it came to pass as they went, that he entered into a certain town: and a certain woman named Martha, received him into her house. [39] And she had a sister called Mary, who sitting also at the Lord’s feet, heard his word. [40] But Martha was busy about much serving. Who stood and said: Lord, hast thou no care that my sister hath left me alone to serve? speak to her therefore, that she help me.
        [41] And the Lord answering, said to her: Martha, Martha, thou art careful, and art troubled about many things: [42] But one thing is necessary. Mary hath chosen the best part, which shall not be taken away from her. ((Luke 10: 38-42)
        “*Mary hath chosen the best part … which shall not be taken away from her*”.
        [3] Mary therefore took a pound of ointment of right spikenard, of great price, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair; and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment. [4] Then one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, he that was about to betray him, said: [5] Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
        [6] Now he said this, not because he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and having the purse, carried the things that were put therein. [7] Jesus therefore said: Let her alone, that she may keep it against the day of my burial. [8] For the poor you have always with you; but me you have not always. (John 12: 3-8)
        Judas was not happy with the waste. The money could have been used “practically” in service to the “poor” (with allowances made for Judas’s administration expenses of course).
        Martha is important. Mary is important. “*Mary has the better part*”. And *it shall not be taken away from her* … especially not by a silly little “International Commission”.

    2. Doesn’t sound like a Teresian Carmelite’s response to me. A little too worldly in the wording. Shouldn’t you be praying? I will be praying for you.

  5. Cor Orans = Praying Heart
    As with Traditionis Custodes (= Guardians of Tradition) the title of the document is precisely the opposite of the body of the document. Praying Heart is meant to eliminate the engine of prayer and adoration from our contemplative warriors in the world, in the same way that Guardians of Tradition is meant to eliminate Tradition from the visible Chirch in the world.
    Opposite … actual meaning is always opposite stated meaning within the words of those who are not safely within the Sacred Magisterium of Holy Mother Church and Her dogmatic Deposit of Faith. As in the “Thank You” of Sr. Gabriela, above, which is not really a “thank you” at all or an appreciation of informing her of important information that “jumped overboard, went AWOL (etc).
    ” [37] But let your speech be yea, yea: no, no: and that which is over and above these, is of evil” (Matt 5:37). Clear, concise, simple. honest, leading directly to Truth, is the speech used by those who love God above all things.
    Vatican II Nu Church intends to eliminate our mother tongue, Latin, from our common speech throughout the world and across time. That unifying language that unites us is to be replaced by the cacaphony of dialects in which everyone can hear what they want to hear, those in power can manipulate words to mean what they want them to mean.
    But Vatican II Nu Church uses Latin words for one use only, and that is as an “appeal to authority”, to make their unjust disconnected from Tradition plans seem just and connected, simply by the appearance of the ancient tongue. Novus Ordo sounds Traditional until you realize all it means is Nu Order, Nu Church. Cor Orans sounds Traditional until you realize that “the heart” it is “from” is not actually the Sacred Heart of Jesus, but something else – it is the end of prayerful Holy Religious Orders, the beginning of the Humanist religious organizations. Vatican II Nu Church wants to eliminate Latin, so why not use vernacular titles to their little documents of intent?
    We should all say what we mean and clearly define our terms. The Catholic Church is a union and a communion of all the Saints and Angels in the visible and invisible worlds of heaven and earth, surrounding Christ our Lord and the Blessed Trinity, whom we collectively worship and adore. We are ONE. Nothing new is permitted or desired. We already have perfect. It is the job of the ONE, TRUE Pope to guard the Sacred DEPOSIT (cannot be added to or subtracted from) of Faith and to keep the living Faithful within its blessed paths that lead to God – Three In One, Who ALONE is Who we serve.
    Have a blessed Advent Season. Viva Cristo Rey! All praise to Christ Our King! Jesus I trust in Thee!

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