Definition: A corporate stance of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth is a public statement or action made in the Congregation’s name, on behalf of and with the informed consent of a simple majority of community members, polled in regard to a major issue of concern resulting from individual/group study, networking partners (i.e. LCWR, CRI, Charity Federation, etc.) and/or prayerful reflection.
Rationale: As Sisters of Charity of Nazareth we hold values in common which may be acted upon to live out our Charism and simultaneously to build the Reign of God. We also look for ways of furthering our Mission Statement and opportunities to bring about systemic change. Moreover, a corporate rather than an individual stance is more effective in addressing public policy or an issue calling for a public response.
Process for taking a Corporate Stance:
Step 1 An individual and/or group identifies and documents an issue for a corporate stance.
The issue should meet the following criteria:
- External to the Congregation
- Relevant to the Mission Statement, Gospel and/or Catholic Social Teachings
- Affect human rights and/or the integrity of creation
Step 2 Having met the criteria, the individual/group brings the issue to the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee decides:
- Does the issue meet the criteria for a corporate stance?
- Is the issue appropriate for congregation-wide discernment?
Step 3 The Executive Committee appoints a committee composed of:
- Members who have submitted the issue
- Additional persons if deemed appropriate
- Director of Office of Global Ministries as ex-officio member
A chairperson can be decided by the committee.
Step 4 The Executive Committee announces the process to the congregation
Step 5 The responsibilities of the committee:
- Prepare and distribute a process and materials for theological reflection around the issue to congregational members and associates
- Prepare and distribute the Corporate Stance for congregational members and associates
- Prepare a ballot.
Step 6 The committee distributes the ballot to Congregational members after sufficient time has been provided for study, reflection, discussion and prayer on the issue.
Step 7 Ballots are completed and returned to the committee.
Step 8 A corporate stance is made if returned ballots show a simple majority with a “yes”.
Step 9 The Executive Committee:
- Communicates the results of the ballot to members and/or refer to Provinces (When Congregation does not adopt as Corporate Stance, provinces are free to follow a process for Provincial Corporate Stance)
- Distributes the Corporate Stance publicly
- Promotes continued education and advocacy with regard to the Corporate Stance through the Office of Global Ministries
- Monitors the Corporate Stance on an ongoing basis
Revised February 2013