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Women of FaithThe Chicago Sisters of Mercy and the Evolution of a Religious Community$
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Mary Beth Fraser Connolly

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780823254736

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823254736.001.0001

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Demanding Decades

Demanding Decades

Mercy Response to the Clergy and the Laity: 1928–1960s

(p.105) 4 Demanding Decades
Women of Faith

Mary Beth Fraser Connolly

Fordham University Press

Chapter four examines the growing demand for sisters to staff various institutions and the need to educate and prepare its members for ministerial work as teachers or health professionals. This chapter examines the emergence of the Sister Formation Conference, how the Mercys engaged in this movement, and how they attempted to meet the expanding needs of its members while faithfully serving the needs of the Catholic Church. Throughout this period, the American Catholic laity grew in number and maturity and embraced new lay movements like Catholic Action. The Chicago Mercys while separated by monastic-like religious structures were also a part of these developments. These developments in conjunction with the movement to fully educate sisters for ministries prepared the Chicago Mercys for the more dramatic changes of the late 1960s and 1970s.

Keywords:   Chicago Sisters of Mercy, American Catholic women religious, Sister Formation Conference, Religious life twentieth century

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