A blog by the magazine's editors and contributors


"Sisters of Selma" to air on PBS

PBS is running a documentary about nuns who participated in the civil rights march in Selma, Ala., for Black History Month.

Consult local listings; it's showing at several "off" times on my station on and around Feb. 6.

Check it out and report back here.



Commenting Guidelines

  • All

Most of the good works done by the RCC has been done by nuns. They made the church credible while the clergy strutted and lived on their laurels. Apparently men still dominate but the real work has always been done by those who took the lowest seat.

An extensive viewers' guide is at this link: new photo of Sister Antona Ebo is heart-warming. She is a blessing.

Bill, while nuns, past and present, are what helps keep me Catholic, let's be fair. I see some clerical collars among the marchers (see Joe's link above, and thanks to Joe for that).You'd have been one of them, I dare say. :-)

While the story of the nuns is superb, I think Jean is right that many priests were involved in the 60s early 70s in civil rights struggles.The question is that, now with a dearth of clergy, has the sharp edge of that kind of witness dwindled in practice?Surely ther eare peace acticivists and the continuing demonstartions at the old School of the Americas?But, apropos of the Egan article, many feel that parish realignment in most major area, is driven by money not service to the poor.Of course that impinges on the question of how the Church deals with immigrants both legal and illegal.Still, I think Matthew 25 is not the overding consideration for many today.

What heady days they were in 1965! I was still a young proud Catholic and the witness of the Church in places like Selma (a counterbalance to the "witness" of most of the Catholics in Plaquemines Parish, LA) sent the triumphal balloons high in the air.There is something to be said for the witness value of clerial and religious attire. Of course, the true value is in the witness of action, not the witness of attire, but, nonetheless .....

Jimmy, what a great point! Those habits and collars said, "We are Catholic and this is wrong."No wonder you were proud!

An age of martyrs, perhaps. But the church, unlike even the Constantinian church, did not honor them. Many on that line were either censured or isolated. Not a surprise from a pope who ignored Romero.The reason many of them were censured was because they made the natural transition for renewal or reform of the church. Instead of Matthew 25 Right to Life became symbolic of the church, unless it concerned living people in Africa or other places of cruelty and abandoment. Torture, sadly enough, was still defended by the Catholic right, to its shame.Give Karol credit over the theocons here that he was consistent in opposing the death penalty and war. The American Catholic right is laying low now talking about innocuous things lest they be reminded of the atrocities they fostered or allowed. Not only surviving those sixties activist's, and probably the best, is Theodore Hesburgh, who continued to flourish. When John Tracy Ellis, the American CAtholic historian, traced the life of Hesburgh and compared him to the bishops and other Catholic leaders he noted that "it was not even close."

I just saw the hour. Maybe real life (presented here) is somewhat less dramatic than a hyped-up fictional account. In this presentation, after presenting the injustice and the violence, suddenly the problem of reaching the Dallas County Court House is solved by a judgment from a federal court. If Selma marked an important point of northern nuns and clerics joining in the Southern protests, from the viewpoint of the entire civil rights movement, it appears to be just one of the steps. Am I right?-------I could not catch the name of the archbishop of St. Louis who required a segregated novitiate for the three black novices and the opening of a segregated hospital (St Mary's). Can anyone identify him?Thanks.Joe

Add new comment

You may login with your assigned e-mail address.
The password field is case sensitive.

Or log in with...

Add new comment