Pope poses ‘challenge’ with Year for Consecrated Life

The announcement of a Year for Consecrated Life has been welcomed as a “challenge and a stimulus” to those in religious life.

Responding to news that Pope Francis has set 2015 as a year to mark and celebrate the contribution of those in consecrated life to the Church, Sr Elizabeth Cotter IBVM, Vicar for Clergy in the Dublin archdiocese told The Irish Catholic: “I believe that he is challenging us to reclaim our identity. I believe the Year will provide the stimulus for religious to reflect on charism and how we are called to live it out in today’s world.”

Acknowledging that past scandals had caused many religious to become invisible, Sr Cotter pointed out that some 3,000 religious continue to work in the Archdiocese of Dublin alone.

On the appeal of Pope Francis, who stated in announcing the Year for Consecrated Life that a Church without nuns is “unthinkable, Sr Cotter said: Pope Francis has brought a warmth and simplicity to the exercise of leadership that is proving inspirational to all. Religious feel that in a particular way, Francis speaks our language.”