The Vatican on May 15, 2018, confirmed its high regard for the contemplative life in issuing “Cor Orans” that provides instructions on how to apply Pope Francis’ 2016 Apostolic Constitution “Vultum Dei Quaerere”. The document is addressed to Catholic women religious in contemplative communities.
“Cor Orans” was presented during a press conference in the Holy See Press Office led by Archbishop José Rodriguez Carballo, Secretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, and by the undersecretary of the same Congregation, Father Sebastiano Paciolla reported Vatican News.
The archbishop pointed out the significance of the document in light of there being almost 38,000 cloistered nuns in the world today. The cloistered offer prayers for the Church and for people in the entire world.
The document offers a variety of both practical and spiritual guidance. It updates the Apostolic Constitution Sponsa Christi Ecclesia, published byPope Pius XII, on November 21, 1950.
According to the new document, Pope Francis, by promulgating the Apostolic Constitution Vultum Dei quaerere, on June 29, 2016, to help the contemplatives reach the aim of their specific vocation, invited reflection and discernment on the precise content tied to consecrated life in general and to the monastic tradition in particular, but he did not intend to abrogate Sponsa Christi Ecclesia that was derogated only in some points. As a consequence, the two pontifical documents are to be held as normative in force for monasteries of nuns and must be read in a unitary vision.