Sister Lucy case: “Please understand that I have been a nun for 39 years… Do not throw me out on the street,” said Sister Lucy Kalappura on Wednesday, arguing her case before the Kerala High Court. Her lawyer has reportedly withdrawn from the case.
She is facing expulsion from her convent in Wayanad, Kerala following protests she partook in with other nuns against rape-accused Bishop Franco Mulakkal in 2019. Sister Lucy was dismissed from her church congregation two years ago, with her latest appeal challenging convent eviction orders rejected by the Vatican. Read a timeline here.
This is reportedly the first instance in Indian history of a nun appearing in court to fight her case by herself without legal counsel.
Sister Lucy had last year applied in court for police protection until the case ended. The court has said protection could not be granted to her as long as she was on the convent premises, and reserved orders. Proceedings for her eviction now are also underway.
Sister Lucy Case: What You Should Know
“I am a woman, a nun fighting for justice. It is important for my nunship that I continue to stay at this convent… I have nowhere else to go,” she told the Kerala HC.
The Franciscan Clarist Congregation (FCC) in a letter last month reportedly told Sister Lucy, “There is no further legal remedy available to you to within the Catholic legal system to challenge your dismissal… Now onwards it is unlawful for you to continue to stay in any of the Franciscan Clarist Convents.”
While arguing her case in court, Sister Lucy appealed to Justice Raja Vijayaraghavan to not ask her to vacate the convent for protection, at least until the civil court hearing her case against the eviction pronounces its orders.
“You have admitted yourself that you are subjected to ill-treatment at the convent. This will only depreciate if you continue to stay at the convent any longer,” the court told her.