If you have not yet realized that the Christmas story is a story of liberation from oppression, it is time to realize that. I like to dust off the patriarchy and misogyny of scriptural writers to find the beautiful wisdom within the stories and songs. Here is my daily devotional for the third week of Advent, the week of Love. May our ever-birthing Goddess guide you to recognize and birth Joy, with all Creation. As the sky turns dark, may our candles shine ever brighter, together.
Feminist Advent Devotional, Day 21:
John 1:1-14; Matthew 5:14,16, revised.
In the beginning was Wisdom, and Wisdom was within Goddess, and Wisdom was Goddess. Divine Wisdom birthed all Creation, all that is and was and ever shall be. What has come into being in her was Life, and the Life was the Light of all kindred. The Light shines in the Darkness, and the Darkness is a Holy Womb in which new Light is birthed.
There are mighty women, prophets of Goddess, who come as witnesses to testify to the Sacred Womb of Darkness and Birth of Light, so that all might heal from our fears and so discover the Divine Wisdom inside ourselves and our kindred communities.
No one person is The Guide, but all kindred can birth Wisdom and Healing. The true Light, which enlightens everyone, is always being birthed in our Earth.
Sometimes, our own people are too afraid to accept our Light. But all who have the courage to reach for healing, become our true selves: our Divine selves, born in the Holy Flowing of Sacred Female Flesh with Sacred Goddess Wisdom.
And Divine Wisdom flows through all flesh and lives among us and within us, and we have seen her Glory, the Glory as of a Mother giving birth to Life, full of Grace and Truth.
You are the Light of the world.
You are the Womb of Earth.
Let your Light shine before others
Let your Womb birth Divine Wisdom
So that all may see your works of Love and JustPeace,
And give Glory to the Womb and Source of all Becoming.
Feminist Advent Devotional, Day 22:
They have fire:
Torches of hate
Seething, terrified, belching poison
But we have fire, too:
Flames of Spirit
Refining, burning away the chaff
The Life-Hearth of Gaia
Ever birthing phoenixes of courage
Enveloping our rage, our despair
Lighting torches of justice
With candles of Hope
Feminist Advent Devotional, Day 23:
Lucia 1:26-35, revised
And in the sixth month the angel Gabrielle was sent from Goddess unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,
To a childless woman espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of Abigail, and the woman’s name was Mary.
And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lady is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
And when she saw her, she was troubled at her saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with Goddess.
And, behold, if thou art willing, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a daughter, and shalt call her name Jesus.
She shall be great, and shall be called the Daughter of the Highest: and the Lady Goddess shall give unto her the throne of her mother Abigail.
And she shall reign with the house of Leah forever; and of her queendom there shall be no end.
Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?
And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come to thee, and the power of the Highest shall beseech thee: therefore also that holy child which shall be born of thee shall be called the Daughter of Goddess.
Feminist Advent Devotional, Day 24:
Matthew 1:18-25, revised.
Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary was found to be with child, she told Joseph that she hoped to raise their first son to be a great prophet of JustPeace, who would deliver people from oppression, and thus she wanted to name him “Jesus.” She had been trying to help liberate her people, but her society was too sexist to listen to her Wisdom.
Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man, respected and admired Mary and wanted to support her. He knew that Mary was strong in the Wisdom of the Holy Spirit. He told Mary that when she bore a son, he would do whatever he could to support her vision to help liberate people from their wounds and fears. All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Eternal Womb through the prophet:
“Look, a woman shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall name him Emmanuelah,”
which means, “Goddess is with us.”
Joseph followed his conscience and his faith commitments to JustPeace, and he treated Mary with every respect and consideration. He dedicated himself to being a model of feminism and justice. When their son was born, Mary and Joseph named him Jesus.
Feminist Advent Devotional, Day 25:
Lucia 2:1-20, revised.
In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augusta that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinia was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Mary also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of Abigail called Bethlehem, because she was descended from the house and family of Abigail. She went to be registered with Joseph, to whom she was engaged. Mary was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn daughter and wrapped her in bands of cloth, and laid her in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
In that region there were shepherd families living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of Goddess stood before them, and the glory of Goddess shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the Earth: to you is born this day in the city of Abigail a Savior, who is an Anointed Healer, a Wise Guide. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising Goddess and saying,
“The Glory of Goddess shines from the deepest valley to the highest mountaintop,
and on Earth, Divine Peace is ever birthing among the faithful kindred!”
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherd families said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which Goddess has made known to us.” So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. And Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart, honoring the sacred witness of society’s most lowly women, men, and children regarding the birthing of hope and justice. The shepherd families returned, glorifying and praising Goddess for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
Feminist Advent Devotional, Day 26:
Womb of All
Placenta of Creation
May my hands be your Vessels
Flow through me, Life-giver
Nourish our bodies, our souls
With the bright Joy
Of bread broken
Cup poured out
Wild, harmonious, abundant Love
Soil, water, plant, animal, farmer
Dancing in and through my hands
Blessing and blessed
For our altar table
Where we nurse at your Breast
Reverent and grateful
Trelawney Grenfell-Muir teaches courses about Sex, Dating, Marriage, and Work in the Religion and Theological Studies Department at Merrimack College and about Cross Cultural Conflict in the Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. A Senior Discussant at the Religion and the Practices of Peace Initiative at Harvard University, she holds an M.Div. from the Boston University School of Theology with a concentration in Religion and Conflict, and a Ph.D. in Conflict Studies and Religion with the University Professors Program at Boston University. She currently writes articles, book chapters, and liturgical resources about feminist, nature-based Christianity.