The Vatican’s 1983 Code of Canon Law takes effect, prohibiting religious men and women from serving in public office, affecting members of NETWORK, including foundress Elizabeth Morancy.
A Difficult Choice
When the Vatican prohibited religious men and women from serving in public office, two NETWORK Board Members were forced to make a painful choice: Elizabeth Morancy, a Rhode Island state Representative, and Arlene Violet, a candidate for Rhode Island State Attorney General. Both resigned from the Sisters of Mercy to serve in those positions. Previously, NETWORK with LCWR and other groups, had issued an Epistle in support of former Mercy Sister Agnes Mary Mansour, who had been forced to choose between her ministry as director of the Michigan Department of Social Services and her community by the Vatican.