My Hopeful Prayer for 2018 by Anjeanette LeBoeuf

When the dust settled after November 9, 2016, many were looking for a better 2017. Alas, 2017 was one of the roughest, heaviest, and revelatory years in the last twenty years. 2017 shook many to their cores. Every morning seemed to bring new horrors, new mountains to climb, and more piles of ridiculousness to shift through. And it didn’t seem to relent. Every moment, every hour was met with baited breath. Is this the moment that our world falls apart? Is this the moment we wake up from this nightmare?

Continue reading “My Hopeful Prayer for 2018 by Anjeanette LeBoeuf”

The Women’s March on Washington: I’ll Be There in Spirit by Carol P. Christ

womens-march-logoThe Women’s March on Washington has released its statement of vision and principles, and what a stunning testimony to intersectional feminism and collaboration it is! The statement is woman-centered, while at the same time addressing a multitude of issues that affect women’s lives: from access to abortion for all, to an equal rights amendment to the constitution, to the rights of  women as domestic and farm workers, to police reform, and so much more.

I was thrilled to read the list of women honored as foremothers to the march:

Bella Abzug*Corazon Aquino*Ella Baker*Grace Lee Boggs*Berta Caceres*Rachel Carson*Shirley Chisholm*Angela Davis*Miss Major Griffin Gracy*LaDonna Harris*Dorothy I. Height *bell hooks*Dolores Huerta*Marsha P. Johnson*Barbara Jordan*Yuri Kochiyama*Winona LaDuke*Audre Lorde*Wilma Mankiller*Diane Nash*Sylvia Rivera*Barbara Smith*Gloria Steinem*Hannah G. Solomon*Harriet Tubman*Edith Windsor*Malala Yousafza

Many of these women have inspired me, particularly (but not only): Bella Abzug, Rachel Carson, Shirley Chisholm, Malala Yousafza. I have taught books by or about many of them, including: Rachel Carson, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, Harriet Tubman, Barbara Smith.

I hope these names will be read at the beginning of the ceremonies, followed by an invitation to all present to speak, shout, or whisper—all at the same time–the names of all the women, known and unknown, who have inspired their own activism for women’s rights. In this way, no one’s name is left out. We have a similar ritual on the Goddess Pilgrimage to Crete, and it is incredibly powerful.

I first heard the Women’s March on Washington discussed at the meeting of the Feminist Liberation Theology Network held in conjunction with the meetings American Academy of Religion and Society of Biblical Literature ten days after the (so-called) election of Donald Trump. At that time a number of women asked if this march would be a white women’s march. Would women of color feel called or able to come? In the interim, women of color have become leaders of the Women’s March on Washington and it is definitely not “for white women only.” It was suggested that women of color might feel safer at local marches. These have been organized as well: learn about Sister Marches here. At the time of this writing 370 Sister Marches had been organized—in all 50 states and in more than 40 countries.

If, like me, you are feeling weary and despondent these days, the statement of the Women’s March on Washington may help to re-inspire your commitment to all women’s rights:

The Women’s March on Washington is a women-led movement bringing together people of all genders, ages, races, cultures, political affiliations and backgrounds in our nation’s capital on January 21, 2017, to affirm our shared humanity and pronounce our bold message of resistance and self-determination

Recognizing that women have intersecting identities and are therefore impacted by a multitude of social justice and human rights issues, we have outlined a representative vision for a government that is based on the principles of liberty and justice for all. As Dr. King said, “We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back.”

Our liberation is bound in each other’s. The Women’s March on Washington includes leaders of organizations and communities that have been building the foundation for social progress for generations. We welcome vibrant collaboration and honor the legacy of the movements before us – the suffragists and abolitionists, the Civil Rights Movement, the feminist movement, the American Indian Movement, Occupy Wall Street, Marriage Equality, Black Lives Matter, and more – by employing a decentralized, leader-full structure and focusing on an ambitious, fundamental and comprehensive agenda. Read more.

Learn more about the march. Readers of FAR might want to participate in the march with WATER (Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual). I’ll be there in spirit from Molivos, Lesbos, Greece.

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a-serpentine-path-amazon-coverBe among the first to order A Serpentine Path, Carol P. Christ’s moving memoir of transformation. Carol’s other new book written with Judith Plaskow is Goddess and God in the World: Conversations in Embodied Theology. Carol also wrote the first Goddess feminist theology, Rebirth of the Goddess.

Join Carol on a Goddess Pilgrimage to Crete in 2017. Save $200.

Read two of the chapters in the book: Mysteries and Dionysian Rites.

Thanks to Judith Shaw for the cover art “Downward Serpent.”

 

 

 

 

A Letter to Those I’ve Lost by John Erickson

Out of all of these things, the one thing that has kept coming to my mind is G-d. What is he (or she) thinking? I feel like I’m back in one of my Old Testament classes discussing the harsh and cruel G-d that thrust so many horrible things onto their believers. Maybe, the worst part about the election isn’t Donald Trump, but it is the realization that G-d may be dead after all.

Dear [Insert Name Here],

Something died on November 8, 2016, and I do not think I’ll ever be able to get it back. I sat there, walking back to my house, in disbelief and utter shock and scared about the next 4 years of my life.

For weeks leading up to the election, I had found myself praying in the copy room at my work almost daily. I would sit there, silent and alone, having just read some misleading article or alt-right post from a family member that called Hillary Clinton the devil, and wonder: when did everything go so off the rails?

Although we’ll spend years trying to figure the answer to my above question out, for me, it is a question I have been asking myself ever since election night and specifically knowing how certain members of my family would, and ultimately did, vote. Continue reading “A Letter to Those I’ve Lost by John Erickson”

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