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Nuns we love: How do you solve a problem like Maria?

Just in case The Sound of Music didn’t clue you in: it turns out that nuns can be a bit cheeky. Maria Von Trapp sang out of church, ate too much, and fell in love (oh yeah: and evaded the Nazis). These days, nuns behaving badly are more likely to be waving the feminist flag, it turns out. According to a BBC article, the Vatican just released a report criticizing the Leadership Conference of Women Religious — which represents about 80% of American nuns — saying that they were “becoming feminist and politicised, promoting radical ideas and challenging bishops.” Excellent!

And just to prove how on top of things they are, the Vatican decided to officially frown upon a book by a U.S. nun… that was published back in 2005. We guess there’s a bit of a backlog in the “nuns we’re pissed off at” department. The title which apparently poses “great harm” to Catholics everywhere is Just Love: A Framework for Christian Sexual Ethics by Sister Margaret Farley. The book is brimming over with reason, intelligence, and tolerance — so you can see why the Vatican would find it so abhorrent. Farley even dares to suggest that gay marriage is a good thing.

In a statement defending her book — and how psyched is she for the publicity boost seven years after the pub date?! — Farley said: “The fact that Christians (and others) have achieved new knowledge and deeper understanding of human embodiment and sexuality seems to require that we at least examine the possibility of development in sexual ethics.”

Now there’s a nun we could have a beer with. (Or maybe just an iced tea.)

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