AGENCY AND THE MORAL RIGHT TO AN EDUCATION FOR WOMEN RELIGIOUS

  • James F Keenan SJ Boston College
Keywords: Declaration of Human Rights, Divini Illius Magistri, Gravissimum Educationis, Moral Agency, Moral Right to Education, Vatican II, Women Religious

Abstract

With growing numbers of women religious, especially in Africa, Asia and Latin America, their capacity for opening and staffing schools and hospitals makes for a very promising future for Catholic apostolic work. Still, many of these vocations are of women with rudimentary education and in many instances, religious and ecclesial superiors do not adequately appreciate and support the importance of an education, despite the fact that Vatican II and the Declaration of Human Rights explicitly insist on the right to an education. This essay analyses the data regarding the education of girls and young women to make the case that the church’s investment in the education of religious women will multiply significantly the impact of heeding and guaranteeing this moral right.

Author Biography

James F Keenan SJ, Boston College

Fr James Keenan, SJ, is the Founders Professor of Theology at Boston College. He was Consultant to the National Catholic Conference of Bishops for the Revision of the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Institutions (1988-1995). He has been on the Editorial Board of Theological Studies since 1991, and on the Editorial Board of Asian Horizons since 2010, and the Board of Directors of the Society of Christian Ethics (2001-2005). His works include Goodness and Rightness in Thomas Aquinas’s Summa Theologiae, Virtues for Ordinary Christians, Jesus and Virtue Ethics (with Dan Harrington), Toward a Global Vision of Catholic Moral Theology: Reflections on the Twentieth Century, A History of Catholic Moral Theology in the Twentieth Century: From Confessing Sins to Liberating Consciences, Paul and Virtue Ethics (with Dan Harrington) and Ethics of the Word: Voices in the Catholic Church Today. He is the chair of the international committee, Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church. He has published over 250 essays, articles and reviews. He has been adjunct professor at the Gregorian University in Rome (2000, 2002), Loyola School of Theology in Manila (2001, 2003), and Dharmaram Vidya Kshetram in Bangalore (2007 onwards). Email: james.keenan.2@bc.edu

References

Sr Anne Nasimiyu-Wasike, LSOSF, “Christology and an African Woman’s Experience,” in J.N.K. Mugambi and Laurenti Magesa, ed., Jesus in African Christianity: Experimentation and Diversity in African Christology, Nairobi: Initiatives, 1989.

Robert J. Schreiter, ed., Faces of Jesus in Africa, Maryknoll: Orbis, 199.

Sr Anne Nasimiyu-Wasike, LSOSF, “Christianity and the African Rituals of Birth and Naming” and “Polygamy: A Feminist Critique,” in Mercy A. Oduyoye and Musimbi R.A. Kanyoro, ed., The Will to Arise: Women, Tradition, and the Church in Africa, Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 1992.

Sr Anne Nasimiyu-Wasike, LSOSF, “Is Mutuality Possible: An African Response,” Missiology: An International Review, 29, 1 (January 2001).

Sr Anne Nasimiyu-Wasike, LSOSF, “The Missing Voices of Women,” James F. Keenan, ed., Catholic Theological Ethics Past, Present, and Future: The Trento Conference, Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 2011.

Declaration on Christian Education: Gravissimum Educationis, para. 1 (October 28, 1965) http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/ vat-ii_decl_19651028_gravissimum-educationis_en.html.

http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/index.html.

“Right to an Education” website, http://www.right-to-education.org 8 http://www.right-to-education.org/issue-page/marginalised-groups/girls-women.

Robert Heslep, “Both the Moral Right and the Moral Duty to be Educated,” Educational Theory 42, 4 (1992).

Robert Heslep, Education in Democracy: Education’s Moral Role in the Democratic State, Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University Press, 1989.

http://www.uis.unesco.org/literacy/Documents/Intl-literacy-day/literacyinfographic-2013-en.pdf.

http://www.worldbank.org/en/topic/girlseducation/brief/the-world-bank-group- wbg-and-adolescent-girls-education-factsheet.

https://www.globalpartnership.org/blog/why-educating-girls-makeseconomic-sense.

https://social.un.org/youthyear/docs/fact-sheet-girl-youngwomen.pdf see B. Herz and G. Sperling, What Works in Girls’ Education: Evidence and Policies from the Developing World, Council on Foreign Relations: New York, 2004.

Tarra MacNally, “Catholic Sisters in Africa: Strong, Vital and Taking on Global Challenges,” USCDornside Center for Religion and Civic Culture, (October 10, 2016), https://crcc.usc.edu/catholic-sisters-in-africa-strong-vital-and-taking-on-globalchallenges/.

“African Sisters Journey to US for Education, Mission,” National Catholic Reporter (July 18, 2012) https://www.ncronline.org/news/african-sisters-journey-us-education- mission.

J.J. Ziegler, “A Source of Hope,” Catholic World Report (May 9, 2011) http:// www.catholicworldreport.com/2011/05/09/a-source-of-hope/.

John Chathanatt, SJ and Jaya Peter, ed., Silent Waves: The Contribution of the Catholic Church to Nation Building, Bangalore: Claretians Publications, 2012.

Marie-Lucile Kubacki, “The (Almost ) Free Work of Sisters,” L’Osservatore Romano (March 1, 2018) http://www.osservatoreromano.va/en/news/almost-free-work-sisters."

Kubacki, “The (Almost ) Free Work of Sisters.”

Jose Kavi, “Nun Servants, Indians Speak Up,” MattersIndia.com, (March 22, 2018) http://mattersindia.com/2018/03/nun-servants-indians-speak-up/.

Lisa Sowle Cahill, A Theology and Praxis of Gender Equality, Bangalore: Dharmarham Publications, 2018.

Sr Veronica Jamanyur Rop, “Giving a Voice to African Women through Education,” Linda F. Hogan and A.E. Orobator, S.J., Feminist Catholic Theological Ethics: Conversations in the Church, Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 2016.

http://uis.unesco.org/sites/default/files/documents/adult-and-youth-literacy- national-regional-and-global-trends-1985-2015-en_0.pdf.

Pope Pius XI, Divini Illius Magistri, (December 31, 1929), para. 11; http://w2.vatican.va/content/pius-xi/en/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-xi_enc_ 31121929_divini-illius-magistri.html.

Anne Arabome, “Gender and Ecclesiology: Authorities, Structures, Ministry,” Lisa Sowle Cahill, Diego Irarrazaval and Elaine M. Wainwright, ed., Gender in Theology, Spirituality and Practice, Concilium 2012, 4 (London: SCM Press, 2012).

Marguerite Akossi-Mvongo, “The Church We Want, Ecclesia of Women in Africa?” Agbonkhianmeghe E. Orobator, ed., The Church We Want: Foundations, Theology and Mission of the Church in Africa, ed., Nairobi: Paulines, 2015.

Sr Vimala Chenginimattam, CMC, A Resonating Different Voice: Psycho-Moral Development of Women according to Carole Gilligan, Bangalore: Dharmarham Press, 2010.

Sr Vimala Chenginimattam, CMC, “Through Her Eyes: The Role of Women Theological Ethicists in Terms of the Future Development of Moral Theology,” Yiu Sing Lucas Chan, James F. Keenan and Shaji George Kochuthara, ed., Doing Asian Theological Ethics in Cross-Cultural and an Interreligious Context, Bangalore: Dharmaram Publications, 2016.

Sr Rekha M Chennattu, Johannine Discipleship as a Covenant Relationship, Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 2006.

“Life in Abundance: Johannine Ethics from an Indian Perspective,” Yiu Sing Lúcás Chan, James F. Keenan, Ronaldo Zacharias, ed., The Bible and Catholic Theological Ethics, Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 2017.

Published
2018-03-31
How to Cite
F Keenan SJ, J. (2018). AGENCY AND THE MORAL RIGHT TO AN EDUCATION FOR WOMEN RELIGIOUS. Asian Horizons, 12(01), 7-21. Retrieved from http://dvkjournals.in/index.php/ah/article/view/2094