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I know that the charismatic movement has been debated many times on this board.  Thought everyone might be interested in this.

BTW - who here is in the Omaha diocese?  I know nothing about this Archbishop.  Is he orthodox?

http://www.zenit.org/article-30673?l=english


ARCHBISHOP SUPPRESSES INTERCESSORS OF THE LAMB

48 Members Moved to Archdiocesan Housing

By Karna Swanson

OMAHA, Nebraska, OCT. 15, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Archbishop George Lucas of Omaha has suppressed a Catholic association of hermits after its lay directors impeded efforts to implement needed reforms that were identified during a recent canonical visitation.

A statement from Archbishop Lucas stated that, effective immediately, the Association of the Hermit Intercessors of the Lamb "is in no way associated with the Catholic Church," and that "the vows of the former members have ceased."

The archbishop added that the vowed members should refrain from wearing the white robe and teal scapular that constitutes the habit of the Intercessors of the Lamb, of using the titles "mother," "brother," and "sister," and of considering themselves as consecrated members of the Church.

Forty-eight members of the community were transported off of the Ponca Hills campus Friday, located in a rural community north of Omaha, which housed the Intercessors, and referred to as "Bellwether." Archbishop Lucas is providing all 48 -- 36 women and 12 men -- with temporary housing, in addition to food and clothing.

"My concern is for the welfare of the individuals who joined the Intercessors with the intention of doing the Lord’s work,” the archbishop said.

A statement from the archdiocese underlined that since the Intercessors of the Lamb is no longer a Catholic organization, "public worship and the celebration of the sacraments are prohibited on the Intercessors’ property; priests and deacons are forbidden from ministering at the property; donors are advised that their contributions will not go to support the mission of a Catholic organization; [...] and the chapel on the campus is no longer a Catholic chapel."

Deacon Timothy McNeil, director of communications for the Diocese of Omaha, added that Catholics worldwide are encouraged to refrain from participating in Intercessors-sponsored activities. He told ZENIT that there are a reported 3,000 lay companions scattered throughout the world.

Regarding the ordained priests, McNeil said they are incardinated in the archdiocese, and that Archbishop Lucas "will decide how to use their gifts after giving them some time to get acquainted with the separation."

Canonical visitation

The Association of the Hermit Intercessors of the Lamb, a contemplative, intercessory, and mixed (lay men, women, and clerics) public association of hermits, was founded in 1980 by Mother Nadine Brown, who was formerly a member of the Sisters of the Cross of the Good Shepherd Congregation.

The association was recognized by Archbishop Daniel Sheehan as a private association of the Christian faithful in 1992. In 1998, it was erected as a public association of the Christian faithful by Archbishop Elden Curtiss. Last winter, Mother Brown asked the newly-installed Archbishop Lucas for help in advancing the group to the next canonical level.

To familiarize himself with the group, the archbishop initiated a canonical visitation of the association, conducted by Father James Conn, canon law professor at the Pontifical Gregorian University. During the visitation, Father Conn found several grave problems with the direction of the group, including concerns among the members of the leadership, the use of "intimidation tactics," a lack of a clear understanding of the group's charism, a faulty grasp of prayer and discernment, and problems with the treatment of the Blessed Sacrament.

At the end of the visitation, Mother Brown stepped down as general director of the association, and the archbishop appointed Father George Baxter as trustee for the governance of the association. Since then, a majority of the civil board of directors rejected the leadership and efforts of the archbishop to implement needed reforms.

"What began as a desire for pastoral solicitude and an effort at positive reform resulted in the refusal to accept the assistance and jurisdiction of the Church by a majority of the lay board members," Archbishop Lucas said.

"It was my hope from the beginning that the Intercessors and the archdiocese would move together on this path to the next step," he added. "Unfortunately, the canonical visitation revealed a number of alarming issues. For reasons that they have refused to share with me, the board of directors does not want to work with the Church to implement the necessary reforms."


Here is the link to the actual statement from the Archdiocese: http://www.archomaha.org/newsevents/pdf/...elease.pdf.
So he ruined Star Wars, now he is trying to attack an association, he must be stopped!

but he didn't technically suppress, he wants them to be reorganize because of internal issues
(10-17-2010, 11:14 PM)AntoniusMaximus Wrote: [ -> ]So he ruined Star Wars, now he is trying to attack an association, he must be stopped!

LOL  rats, you got here first with the joke about his name.


well, this is rather exciting, a little Church 'scandal' that doesn't involve sex, at least so far.

i've never been to omaha and don't know anything about the archbishop, but i had heard about the intercessors of the lamb from someone i know on the internet who has, or rather had, family members involved with the group, living there.  it was suggested that i look at their website a couple of years ago so i did.  it seemed cultish to me though naturally i didn't say that to the person who thought it was a great association and mother nadine a very holy person.  i managed to say something positive about being happy the family members were happy there.  i can't remember anything specific that concerned me,  just that, from reading their website, the intercessors struck me as strange.

the Revixit Report:

i read about the suppression of the group a few days ago, i think on CNA.  naturally, i remembered the group so i did a little digging around about what had happened. somewhere i read a comment from a woman who had attended an event or events at their chapel, during which people walked around talking, socializing, showing no respect for the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle.  much more respect was shown for mother nadine when she came in and she was always surrounded by people to keep others from getting too close to her.  you couldn't just walk up and speak to her unless she chose to speak to you.  obviously, this is hearsay.  there's a lot of hearsay pro and con the IOL. 

here's another 'con' from a blog about IOL: "I am a faculty member at Franciscan University, where the “Intercessors” are very active in recruiting. I have met many of them, and have had students join and leave the group. They are most definitely glassy-eyed, nutty, charismatic cult members. It is one of the worst cults associated with this godforsaken “spiritual” movement. RUN while you still have a chance (and a mind)."

and here's a pro-IOL comment: "In light of the recent events in which Mother Nadine Brown has resigned I would like to state that we don’t know the whole story. I’ve followed Mother Nadine for years and wanted to see her in person but personal situation has prevented that. I’ve admired her spirituality for years and have heard her on many talk shows in which she briefly guests and speaks on spiritual issues surrounding the faithful at this juncture in time. To attack this woman without having her present to answer these charges seems wrong. Please refrain from these type of comments. I am personally offended by the tone of the comments re: Mother Nadine and her buying property to build a church. The comments I have heard seem petty, wrongheaded and jealous. This is the way we treat the people who only want to strengthen the religious and laity by standing together in prayer irregardless of what color habit they are wearing?"

it's very heated over there at  http://www.intercessorsofthelamb.org/  "A blog dedicated to understanding the Intercessors of the Lamb organization" -- wear your flameproof suit if you go in.  at the bottom of the main page, there's a photo of the members of IOL standing around their chapel, which looks like a turquoise and white spaceship, not my taste and a very sixties-seventies look.  they all wear white and turquoise habits -- though they call them teal, i see them as turquoise.  i don't know that there's anything canonically wrong with wearing turquoise but apparently the choice has been criticized because other pro-IOL posters are defensive about it, too.

here are two posts about "mother nadine's spiritual teachings":

"Mother Nadine’s charism is intercessory prayer. It is both contemplative and charismatic. So, it is a blend of both. It is powerful prayer, and effective, which may be why she is being attacked.

All spiritual warriors, true ones, go through a trial like this, so, I will pray for her.

Not liking someone because they dress funny, or do unconventional things is no excuse to detract and calumnize a person. And, the tee, hee, hee, hand rubbing glee certain people are doing over this is very telling. Very telling, indeed."

and a different view:

"The Intercessors leaders’ manual of one and a half years ago was filled with non-Catholic teaching and practices. According to the manual, they practice a form of meditation indistinguishable from TM, they practice a form of self-hypnosis, they practice group “divination” of God’s will through images that they summon, they keep records of all the prayer requests and pass them up to HQ, and they have a false understanding of contemplation. I personally heard “Mother” Nadine, in a talk on the theological virtues of faith, hope, and charity, say that faith means we must believe the voice of God within us. That is not the Catholic understanding of faith. The group believes in “communal contemplation” and does not seem to understand or practice the Catholic way of discovering the will of God or of prudential decision-making."


in the OP, it says:

"Last winter, Mother Brown asked the newly-installed Archbishop Lucas for help in advancing the group to the next canonical level."  [bet she's sorry now.] [yes, i'm imitating fr.z]

"To familiarize himself with the group, the archbishop initiated a canonical visitation of the association, conducted by Father James Conn, canon law professor at the Pontifical Gregorian University. During the visitation, Father Conn found several grave problems with the direction of the group, including concerns among the members of the leadership, the use of "intimidation tactics," a lack of a clear understanding of the group's charism, a faulty grasp of prayer and discernment, and problems with the treatment of the Blessed Sacrament."

If you click the link in the OP to get the whole statement from the archbishop, you find:

"McNeil said Lucas received the consent of the association’s internal governing council
before suppressing the association.  He further stated that Lucas’ decision was also
influenced by [Father] Conn’s findings, which reflected negatively on [Mother Nadine] Brown’s leadership. 

[Father]Conn’s findings included:

errors in governing documents;  [oops]

serious disunity within the community;

widespread dissatisfaction with leadership;

lack of safe environment policies;  [i suspect this does not mean that they didn't recycle their soda cans but has to do with protecting members from sexual advances or other harrassment by other members.  it seems that i've seen these words used that way before]

questionable financial practices;  [uh oh]

violation of its own proper law;    [double uh oh]

use of intimidation tactics to secure obedience from members;  [triple uh oh]

inability of members to articulate the Intercessors’ charism;  [lame lambs]

lack of financial transparency;  [bad news]

violating norms governing alienation and acts of extraordinary administration;

a flawed understanding of prayer and spiritual discernment;  [which is supposed to be their specialty]

absence of good human resources;  [ Huh?]

confusion and violation of internal forum and external forum in formation and governance;

absence of adequate economic stewardship;

illegitimate and irreverent custody of the Blessed Sacrament;  [VERY GRAVE MATTER]

and confusion over the administration of Mass offerings.

N.B.  all those problems are in a paragraph in the archbishop's statement; i separated them into individual problems to make it easier to read. [ it made it easier to play fr.z, too, sorry if that bothered anyone.]  but here you have the charges and it seems the archbishop did the right thing, especially when

""What began as a desire for pastoral solicitude and an effort at positive reform resulted in the refusal to accept the assistance and jurisdiction of the Church by a majority of the lay board members," Archbishop Lucas said."




Sounds like Vatican City.
We should not be too quick to surmise scandal  Here is what a priest is sending out and so my friend, who is associated with the Intercessors sent along to me:

---

This is what I have been sending out to those that ask me about the
community.  The Lord is doing a great work and where there is a
crucifixion there is, with faith in the Lord, a resurrection! There
was a small group of sisters (8 or 9), and a small group of lay
members that were unwilling to cooperate with the Archbishop. Some of
this small group of sisters and lay members formed the governing board
for the Intercessors of the Lamb. The Archbishop could not disband
the board because the community of the Intercessors is set up as a
private corporation. Therefore, the Archbishop had no choice, but to
suppress the Intercessors of the Lamb, since a majority of the board
members refused to cooperate with him as the shepherd of the
archdiocese of Omaha.

Sadly, most of the members of the community were
100 percent behind the Archbishop. In fact, 48 of the brothers and
sisters are 100 support of the Archbishop and currently under his care
at a monastery, here, in Nebraska. We wait to  see what the future holds.
Perhaps, within a year after some discernment the community will move
forward with the charism under a new name. Also, it’s important to
realize that much 99.9 percent  of teachings of the community on the
charism of the Intercession is perfectly in line with the Church. The
Church will most probably review all of the teachings, systematize
them, and then ground them in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and
other magisterial documents. So, this is a great thing and it’s
exciting! The spirit among the brothers and sisters that are under
Archbishop's care is very positive. Actually, they are very excited to
move forward in the Church's time.

The suppression of the community is
NOT due to inauthentic spirituality; rather, it is due to the
unwillingness of certain members of the board with regard to the
Archbishop's requests. One cannot be Catholic and reject the Episcopal
authority which Christ established in his Church. A Bishop is given
the authority to teach, govern, and sanctify the Church.



Please be sure to share this truth. We know how twisted information
can get when it is sources are only 4th and 5th hand. The actual
statement by the archbishop can be found in the web sites below. Pass
this note along to those that might benefit from it. Peace and
prayers. See



http://www.archomaha.org/newsevents/pdf/...elease.pdf



http://www.archomaha.org/newsevents/pdf/...essors.pdf



PS:  As far as I am concerned, I love being a priest and I love
offering the Sacraments. It’s been a joy!



A thought someone sent to me:



God has allowed a rare opportunity for those in the religious
community to "feel" what so many people in our society go through
because of separations or divorces; even death.  So often we hear,
"What can a priest know about these things?"  God works in mysterious
ways.  There is a reason for everything.



GOD IS GOOD, ALL THE TIME; ALL THE TIME, GOD IS GOOD!!



Father John Michael
(10-18-2010, 12:24 PM)Magdalene Wrote: [ -> ]We should not be too quick to surmise scandal… 

when an archbishop has to suppress "a Catholic association of hermits" after a canonical investigation which was requested by the group's founder and head, we don't have to surmise scandal, we know there's scandal. 

we don't know the degree of scandal at this time, but some of the problems noted by the canonical investigator are quite serious and it seems very odd that the (Catholic) board members refused to accept the Church's assistance and jurisdiction.  i hope it can all be worked out without more scandal emerging.

"What began as a desire for pastoral solicitude and an effort at positive reform resulted in the refusal to accept the assistance and jurisdiction of the Church by a majority of the lay board members," Archbishop Lucas said."


you also wrote:

Here is what a priest is sending out and so my friend, who is associated with the Intercessors sent along to me:



Please be sure to share this truth. We know how twisted information
can get when it is sources are only 4th and 5th hand. The actual
statement by the archbishop can be found in the web sites below. Pass
this note along to those that might benefit from it. Peace and
prayers. See


http://www.archomaha.org/newsevents/pdf/...elease.pdf



That is the exact document i quoted from in listing the problems listed in Fr. Conn's findings.  The link is in the bottom of the OP, which is an article from Zenit. 

Below i'm repeating my previous post taken from that document and i am putting it in italics in this post.  The comments in brackets [ ] are mine and i colored them red in my original post, a la Fr. Z, but when you copy colored text it reverts to black text and i'm not going to bother putting it in red again:

If you click the link in the OP to get the whole statement from the archbishop, you find:

"McNeil said Lucas received the consent of the association’s internal governing council
before suppressing the association.  He further stated that Lucas’ decision was also
influenced by [Father] Conn’s findings, which reflected negatively on [Mother Nadine] Brown’s leadership. 


[Father]Conn’s findings included:

errors in governing documents;  [oops]

serious disunity within the community;


widespread dissatisfaction with leadership;

lack of safe environment policies;  [i suspect this does not mean that they didn't recycle their soda cans but has to do with protecting members from sexual advances or other harrassment by other members.  it seems that i've seen these words used that way before]

questionable financial practices;  [uh oh]

violation of its own proper law;    [double uh oh]

use of intimidation tactics to secure obedience from members;  [triple uh oh]

inability of members to articulate the Intercessors’ charism;  [lame lambs]

lack of financial transparency;  [bad news]

violating norms governing alienation and acts of extraordinary administration;

a flawed understanding of prayer and spiritual discernment;  [which is supposed to be their specialty]


absence of good human resources;  [ Huh? ]

confusion and violation of internal forum and external forum in formation and governance;

absence of adequate economic stewardship;

illegitimate and irreverent custody of the Blessed Sacrament;  [VERY GRAVE MATTER]

and confusion over the administration of Mass offerings.


N.B.  all those problems are in a paragraph in the archbishop's statement; i separated them into individual problems to make it easier to read. [ it made it easier to play fr.z, too, sorry if that bothered anyone.]  but here you have the charges and it seems the archbishop did the right thing, especially when

""What began as a desire for pastoral solicitude and an effort at positive reform resulted in the refusal to accept the assistance and jurisdiction of the Church by a majority of the lay board members," Archbishop Lucas said."



i also quoted an equal number of positive and negative statements about the Intercessors from websites and from someone i know online who was connected to them in having family members there and in having visited, met mother nadine brown, etc.  i said that all the comments were hearsay and that i have never been to omaha and don't know anything about the archbishop.

[/quote]