So, the US Catholic nuns chastised by the Vatican have decided to fight back:

After three days of discussion and prayer in Washington this week, the 21 national board members of the group decided they could not accept the Vatican’s verdict, and would send their president and executive director to Rome June 12 to open a dialogue with Vatican officials.

Sister Pat Farrell, president of the leadership conference, said in a telephone interview on Friday, “We do want to go and speak the truth as we understand it about our lives.”

She said the sisters had been “stunned by the severity” of the Vatican’s pronouncement, which accused them of such transgressions as promoting radical feminism and contradicting the bishops. The sisters were also concerned that the assessment was conducted almost entirely by written communication, she said, with only “minimal contact” with officials at the Vatican office that issued the conclusions, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Among the accusations the nuns considered “unsubstantiated” was the Vatican’s charge of promoting “radical feminist themes,” Sister Farrell said.

“Unsubstantiated” my foot. Read the Vatican report yourself. Sister Farrell is lying, either to herself, or to her audience. I find it irritating as hell that Laurie Goodstein, the NYT reporter, repeats without question Sister Farrell’s claim that there had been “minimal contact” between the nun group and the Vatican. The Vatican has been dealing for many years with these nuns, and the investigation that culminated in this report has been underway, with personal visits to various congregations and groups of sisters, informally since 2008, when Cardinal Levada, the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, directly informed the group’s leadership, in a face to face meeting, of the Vatican’s specific concerns. The formal investigation was opened in 2009. Sister Farrell is grossly misrepresenting the facts. It would have taken one or two lines only for the Times to put Farrell’s claim in context, and allow readers to judge for themselves whether or not there was merit to her insinuation that Rome ramrodded the nuns.

This whole “dialogue” strategy is typical of the left. It’s a stalling tactic, nothing more. Does anyone really think these nuns have the slightest intention of obeying Church authorities? According to the National Catholic Reporter, these nuns don’t have a canon law leg to stand on.

Man, I get so burned up by this empty, manipulative narrative of poor, put-upon [fill in the blank] being picked on by awful conservative institutions. It’s all about power, and nothing but, and saying whatever you need to say to maintain or acquire it.

(BTW, a couple of you have sent me Jimmy Akin’s blog post saying that Laurie Goodstein’s characterization of Cardinal Dolan as paying off abusive priests and lying about it was really inaccurate and unfair.)