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Vatican updates norms for female religious: We feel privileged to have regulations to live our vocation in new way

The Holy See has presented a united, updated form of instruction for female contemplate life in monasteries of the Latin Rite, “Cor Orans.” The updates were presented by the Secretary and Undersecretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life at the Vatican. 

Nuns who are affected by the changes, such as those in monasteries, also weighed in on the updates.

Perpetual Adorers of the Holy Sacrament
“By establishing more complete training, it gives as a guideline so one can truly discover his or her vocation and live it in its fullness. This means without confusion and with a clarity about something that is so sacred to live out.”

It recognized the right to “a proper juridical autonomy of life and government,” with the all sisters now directly responding in more cases to superiors and inside persons, instead of outside bishops or the Holy See. This autonomy is already present for male monasteries.

Undersecretary, Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated and Apostolic Life
“The men already have their own regulations within them. Whereas for female monasteries of ancient tradition and rite, their dependence was directly from the Holy See. For this reason, the Holy See gave the disposition to female monasteries. The male monasteries, which are already erected in an autonomous congregation, are ruled by them.”

The nuns who will experience the effects, including more education and less isolation, are content. They say they need a religious culture that states clear regulations, while maintaining the fullness of their vocation. 

Perpetual Adorers of the Holy Sacrament
“We feel privileged that for us, as a contemplative life, they have dedicated some time to give us regulations that will help us live this transcendental life in a new way, because we are new generations. Right now, it's very important because the new generations didn't experience the Second Vatican Council and its renovations. So this renovation really touches our hearts.”

Msgr. Jose Rodriguez Carballo stated that now in the world, there are 40,000 contemplative religious, so the Holy See wants to make sure all regulations are up-to-date so they can fully live out their vocation.