07 March 2018, The Tablet

Are the nuns’ revelations the start of a Vatican #MeToo?


Just like the child abuse scandal, the scandal of nuns’ exploitation is about institutional sin

 

Five years ago next Tuesday, I stood in the rain in St Peter’s Square, sharing an umbrella with a nun I’ll call Sr Monica. It was the night of Pope Francis’ election; the smoke from the Sistine Chapel had turned white, and we were about to discover the identity of the new pontiff.

But it was a long wait, and there was plenty of time to chat with my new acquaintance. What was it like, I asked her, working inside such a male-dominated world? I expected her to say her tasks were interesting, that the priests, bishops and cardinals she worked for were kind, that she felt valued. But she didn’t.

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