Dr. Flores participated in the 28th Annual Virginia Film Festival, held each year in Charlottesville. Discussing the documentary film Radical Grace (2015, directed by Rebecca Parish), Dr. Flores offered theological and political context to recent controversies swirling around social justice advocacy among Catholic women religious. In response to institutional criticism that women religious promote radical feminist themes that undermine Catholic teachings, Dr. Flores elucidated competing narratives concerning concerning the Church’s role in the world:
The first narrative sees the Church as a battleground; the second sees it as a field hospital. Some observers of Catholic life have wondered if it is possible for the Church to be both. The future of the Catholic Church will be influenced by the interaction of these metaphors in U.S. Catholic life.
Beyond the political and theological controversies, however, Radical Grace illuminates their passionate faith that does justice, reminding the audience of the immeasurable contributions of women religious both in the Church and beyond:
I suspect that audience members will be moved not only by their radical commitment to serving the least of these, but by their deep joy. In the words of John’s Gospel: “I give to you a new commandment, that you love one another.” Indeed, they will know we are Christians by our love.
Please see the Radical Grace website to schedule a screening.