Letters to the Editor

Sisters as ordinary citizens

Being “brought up” by sisters in my 11 years in boarding school, I loved your article “A word from our...
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Sisters as ordinary citizens

Being “brought up” by sisters in my 11 years in boarding school, I loved your article “A word from our sisters,” on the sisters and their important work in our archdiocese. It’s about time these educated and prodigious women got their share of space and overdue recognition for their work. 

Question: Why did most of the sisters shown wear habits? If we are to have their work increased and attract more women to their ranks, we must show, at least equally, that there are women who are “disguised” as ordinary citizens working in the fields of the Lord as per Vatican II. One example is our Verbum Dei Missionary sisters here at St. Anthony Church in Long Beach, whose own Sr. Rosalia Meza is the Archdiocese’s Director of Religious Education.

—Mayra Fernandez, Long Beach

‘Rebel Hearts’ review is ‘off base’

The review critiquing the film “Rebel Hearts” was as off base as anything I have ever read. 

Ann Carey states “it comes off as a superficial one-sided account of the 1970 tragic breakup of the 600 member Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Los Angeles and offers no new insights on the 50-year-old story.” Carey must not have actually seen the film, because the entire theme is about insights. 

The article includes much incorrect information, such as claiming that the sisters reported that they received no college instruction or teacher preparation before being placed in a classroom. Carey contends that two years in a novitiate for religious formation constitutes teacher training, when that is precisely not true. The entire story of “Rebel Hearts” is one of the power of the patriarchy.  

The IHMs were strong women, and Cardinal McIntyre just wasn’t having it. My conclusion is that Carey did not do her homework or it was simply a “hit piece” with conveniently misrepresented information.

— Cheryl Ortega, Los Angeles

‘Rebel Hearts’ research rings true

Thank you for the excellent review of the documentary, “Rebel Hearts,” in the Aug. 13 issue. Ann Carey did an excellent job researching and preparing this article.

I can attest from personal experience that each one of the bullet points in the article is correct. One that jumped out at me was regarding Anita Caspary's misinformation that Cardinal James McIntyre forced the sisters out of the schools. In fact, I recall one of the members of the renewal team, Joan Campion, telling my mother and me in 1967 that the IHM sisters were going to stop wearing habits, etc. 

When my mother asked, “What if his eminence objects?” the response was, “We’ll withdraw from the schools.”

They did everything Campion told us they would do. I've never understood why the sisters were so vitriolic against Cardinal McIntyre. He hadn't harmed them in any way — unless following canon law in the exercise of his authority is harmful. 

Thank you so much for this charitable correction of much misinformation. 

— Deacon Tom Brandlin, Los Angeles

Incomplete reporting on pope’s Latin Mass decision

I was very disappointed in your brief, “Pope reimposes restrictions on Latin Mass,” in the July 30 issue. It left out the Holy Father’s reasoning for doing so, the fact that he consulted the bishops first, the way he outlined his continuity with the thinking of the pontiffs that preceded him, and, most of all, his emphasis on the unity that is to be exemplified in the Mass. 

I would expect that Angelus would give its readers more than the secular press. It is well worth going to the Vatican website to read the original letter. 

— Sister Karen Derr, DMJ, Los Angeles

The US bishops and the death penalty

A July 30 letter to the editor asked, “Where was [the bishops’] outrage with the federal death penalty and the 13 individuals who were executed at the end of the Trump administration?”

In fact and in fairness, on Sept. 22, 2020, Dec. 7, 2020, and Jan. 11, 2021, the American bishops issued statements strongly urging Trump to halt executions. “We say to President Trump and Attorney General Barr: Enough. Stop these executions,” one statement urged. “Executions solve nothing,” said another.

Thank you for correcting the record.

— David F. Pierre Jr., Mattapoisett, Massachusetts

Where do the bishops’ concerns lie?

I am distressed by the use of deliberately inflammatory language in the article Teachers or policymakers?” in the July 16 issue. There are no pro-abortion politicians or any others. If the bishops are so concerned with pro-life concerns, where was their outrage with the federal death penalty and the 13 individuals who were executed at the end of the Trump administration? 

It would seem to me that the bishops are more concerned with politics than teaching.

— Sheila Anderson, Redondo Beach

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