The Vatican has upheld the order to expel Sister Lucy Kalappura, the nun who participated in the protests against the rape accused Bishop Franco Mullackal. She was expelled in August 2019 from Francisian Clarist Congregation (FCC) citing “disciplinary grounds”.
The latest letter that she has received states that the supreme tribunal has rejected her recourse. This was the third time that Sister Lucy had approached the Vatican against her expulsion order.
Sister Lucy received a letter from the superior general of her congregation asking her to vacate the convent room within a week.
Sister Lucy said her side was not heard by the authorities.
Sister Lucy alleged, “I got the rejection letter from the supreme tribunal in June 2021. But when I opened it I realised this letter is dated May 27, 2020. I am getting this letter after one year. In the covering letter by the superior of the congregation, she said my appeal is rejected in the court verdict. There is no completion of the trial or any other verdict. I have not got any information. I don’t have any proof of the verdict. I appealed in March 2020. Due to the Covid, there was lockdown in the whole world. Why are they giving me a letter that is dated a year back? I suspect this is drama to get me out of the convent.”
In the letter from the superior general of the FCC, it said, “You have availed all three levels of appeals possible within the Catholic legal system and in all these levels your recourses against the decree of dismissal are rejected. I would like to bring to your attention the fact that your right to continue as a member of the FCC is now definitively and irrevocably extinguished, and hence you lost your right to use the suffix FCC to your name and you no longer have the right and duty to wear the religious habit of the Franciscan Clarist Congregation hereafter.”
Some of the reasons cited in the letter for expulsion in August 2019 were ‘wilful disobedience, published a book, taking a driving license, defying the laws of the congregation, following a lifestyle that does not abide by the practices of the church, purchasing a car and travels frequently without the permission of the congregation, not giving her salary to the congregation, letting a person stay in her room overnight, did not abide by the transfer order in 2015 and giving interviews to the media.’
While filing the appeal, Sister Lucy had alleged that actions against her began after she participated in the protest supporting the nuns of the Missionaries of the Jesus Congregation, who were demanding justice for a nun, allegedly raped by Bishop Franco Mullackal.
A civil case is also pending, where Sister Lucy has appealed to the court that she should be allowed to continue in the convent.
Sister Lucy told CNN-News18 that so far her side was not heard. She said, “So far they haven’t heard my side, what is the truth from my side, it’s sad. They are only hearing the other side. One who is suffering is not heard. I supported the nun who is oppressed and isolated, due to the sexual abuse of Franco Bishop. In the last stage only I reached to help. Through media also voiced for them. After that only, I am facing all this trouble.”
She added that she hopes to stay in the convent till her death.
Sister Lucy said, “I want to stand for truth and speak the truth. I am facing a lot of troubles in the convent, but I am facing all this because the truth should be heard.”