The following comes from a February 9 ABC7 News article:
Nearly one year after the I-Team reported on a group of Chicago nuns whose West Side heating system broke down, the nuns’ organization is now in similar dire straits in San Francisco, where the Sisters of Fraternite of Notre Dame is facing eviction.
In San Francisco’s famous Tenderloin district, a group of Chicago nuns are facing eviction from the building where they run a soup kitchen – although they may end up saved by a public relations campaign very similar to the one seen in Chicago a year ago when the boiler went out at their West Side church and feed-the-homeless center.
The Sisters of Fraternite Notre Dame have been feeding the homeless in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district for eight years. The past two days, the sisters’ story has been on TV and in the newspapers, with the nuns saying that they cannot afford such a rent increase.
After the boiler break-down, the I-Team learned their French religious order owned millions of dollars in homes, buildings and land in McHenry County and was planning a multi-million dollar construction project near rural Marengo. That controversial project was shut down by McHenry zoning authorities and the nuns’ organization is now suing because of the denial.
One thing not reported in the San Francisco coverage is that the nuns are not recognized by the Vatican or the Roman Catholic Church. They call themselves a “traditional Catholic religious order” and some donors may believe that the organization is approved by the church, but it isn’t.
From ABC7 March 4 2015 story:
According to a spokesperson for the Chicago Archdiocese, the [Sisters of Fraternite Notre Dame]’s founder Bishop Jean Marie Roger Kozik “is not a legitimately ordained bishop in the Roman Catholic Church,” and, Kozik says, is not a priest in good standing with the church. Because of that, the archdiocese says “Catholics should not attend mass” at the order’s West Side church. And they say the nuns are not a religious order associated with the Roman Catholic Church.
“We are a new order. We want to be with the Vatican. We want to be with the Archdiocese. We are working on it and took some steps to be with the Vatican,” Sister Marie Valerie said.
The Archdiocese does say that the nuns are “good people of faith who do important work for the poor.”
Bishop Kozik began the order in 1977 in France after reporting the Virgin Mary spoke to him. Now he lives – at least part-time – in Marengo.