Tuesday, November 1, 2011

PAGANIANITY

To connoisseurs of ecclesiastical goofballism like me, one name stands head and shoulders above the rest and believe it or not, that name is not connected with the Episcopal Church. It is a San Francisco Evangelical Lutheran Church in America congregation officially called Ebenezer although, as you can see by the link, it has begun to refer to itself as herchurch.

Why does herchurch exist? According to the web site:

The Christian-Lutheran Feminist/Womanist/Mujerista Movements exist to celebrate the feminine persona of God/dess and dimensions of the sacred as expressed in faith, worship, learning, mutual care, and acts of justice.

How do they do that? One of the ways is illustrated by that picture, something you can order through their web site if you've decided that Christianity just isn't cutting it for you anymore. That's what those folks call a Goddess rosary.

Thanks to David Fischler.

40 comments:

Nickie Goomba said...

If I order one of these rosaries, will it be delivered in a plain brown envelope?

diddleymaz said...

Had to be in California ,

NORDISK-KATOLSKA KYRKAN said...

In all fairness, if they change the Saviour to the "Saviouress" (?), do they then change the "Hail Mary" to "Hail Jesus", to be really equal and in total balance or...?
Probably it's more like "Hail Myself"!

Sic Transit Gloria Mundi said...

So in an effort to be "more inclusive" they just go in the opposite direction? Father = Mother and god = goddess? How is that equality for all? Clearly they deny Jesus as Son of God and 2nd Person of the Trinity. Poor souls.

docudramaqueen said...

I feel like there is so much judgment flying around in these comments. If a woman feels more comfortable envisioning a woman as God the Father if you will, do you really think God is judging her for this? Many women have had traumatic experiences with men in their lives. Perhaps the only way they can safely envision the Deity is by imagining God as a woman. I was taught that God has no gender. Yes, Christ was a "man" on earth a "hu-man". And yes we say the "Son" is seated at the right hand of the Father, but if Christ is the human form of God, then he must know what it feels like for me as a woman, he must not have either a specific maleness or femaleness to his humanness in the After Life. I really doubt that God or Christ or the Holy Spirit, which in my understanding are all one, really are worried if a woman is envisioning any of them as male or female. I certainly would never tell you how to envision God in your heart of hearts.

Janis Williams said...

I'm sorry, but Jesus was circumcised on the eighth day. And it wasn't a clitoral circumcision. (Sorry if that's too graphic.)

Women, we need to get over scummy ex-boyfriends or husbands. They are NOT God Almighty. We are focused in the wrong direction. Men don't interpret God to us; Jesus Christ (God in human flesh) redeems men.

DRM said...

"I feel like..."--famous last words. The question is "How is God God?" And He has answered--in the Man, Jesus of Nazareth, conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, crucified for the sins of the world. "Envision"--in other words, conjure up a picture of God in your mind. But God has not left us to the imaginations of our own minds and hearts, He has revealed Himself to us in Christ, crucified. Now *there's* what a man (and for that matter, a woman) is made to be--in *that* image--giving the self wholly and purely for the sake of the other, laying down his/her life for a friend....

The Underground Pewster said...

No cross, no crown.

Fr. Caleb said...

Christianity has alread adopted and adapted so much paganism, a little feminism won't hurt and might help. The Roman Saturnalia got usurped for Jesus' birth and the fertility goddess Estra gave her name to the English celebration of the Pasch. The Egyptian god Ra's sun symbol became the halo of saints and the Celt's imitative magic in fire and evergreen to get the sun's return, the Christmas tree with all its lights.

We're dealing with symbols here and a healthy dose of feminism might help balance the overwhelming patriarchal distortion of Biblical imagery. God is love made actual in justice and in Christ there is neither male nor female, but a new creation.

Mária Magdaléna said...

Was Maria a woman, wasn't she?
So she is our advocate, I think.
She isn't God, but she is the first in the "Heart" of the Holy Trinity.

priest's wife said...

Maria M- YES! AND she was assumed body and soul into heaven- so I can get over myself for not being a man- I just need to be more like Mary

Fr Tom said...

In the Prayer for the Whole State of Christ's Church in the Order for Holy Communion used by the Continuing Anglican Churches, Jesus Christ is identified as '...our only Mediator and Advocate.'

And I have never heard the Blessed Virgin Mary descibed as 'first in the heart of the Holy Trinity.' We revere her for her role in the Incarnation of our Lord.

Erika said...

Yeah, and get a load of what they've done to the Our Father:


"Our Mother who is within us
we celebrate your many names.
Your wisdom come.
Your will be done,
unfolding from the depths within us.
Each day you give us all that we need.
You remind us of our limits
and we let go.
You support us in our power
and we act with courage.
For you are the dwelling place within us
the empowerment around us
and the celebration among us
now and for ever. Amen"


Text by Miriam Therese Winter
Medical Mission Sister, Professor
of Liturgy, Worship and Spirituality.
Author of WomanWord and other
books and resources for Ritual.

Clinton said...

I'd remind readers here that folks who comment
on blogs and identify themselves as "Father Such
and Such" may not necessarily be priests. Just
sayin'.

Anonymous said...

To Clinton:

Tom and Caleb ?

Anita Moore said...

docudramaqueen said...
I feel like there is so much judgment flying around in these comments. If a woman feels more comfortable envisioning a woman as God the Father if you will, do you really think God is judging her for this?

There is such a thing as objective truth, and it is possible to know the truth. In fact, we all have a duty to seek the truth. It is only the truth that sets us free. If a woman prefers to stick with what she feels comfortable with, regardless of whether it is true, then she is a slave and not free at all.

P.S. It is false to suggest that Christianity is an amalgamation of pagan symbols. The Church has baptized and adapted some customs and traditions that she regards as benign in themselves, but she has always abhorred paganism as the worship of demons. This is why the earliest Christians preferred to die rather than take part in pagan worship.

Anonymous said...

This is ALMOST as offensive as a diocese of my own church, the Episcopal Church trying to take another look at Pelagianism. UGH.

Fr Theodore said...

Can you say, "PAGAN"?

One wishes they would just drop the charade of being followers of Christ at all; but that would not further their agenda of destroying Christianity in order to replace it with the "imagination of their hearts" (to quote a certain woman whom Scripture says will be called blessed by all generations).

sonojim said...

Is that a roach-clip?

Anonymous said...

It looks more like a nippledangler to me.

Andy said...

Luciferian, pure and simple.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know Lutheran's prayed the rosary.

Katie said...

So it IS possible to be so open-minded that your brain falls out.

Anthony S. Layne said...

"We're dealing with symbols here and a healthy dose of feminism might help balance the overwhelming patriarchal distortion of Biblical imagery."

No, what we're dealing with here is a case of pseudo-anthropology in support of clearly agenda-driven corruptions of Christianity.

Cunjo said...

@Anonymus November 7 5:44AM

Well some of them do.





Also. Jesus was a man, and was crucified. No manly body and no crucifix here...

Devil always likes to pervert Catholic stuff...

Anonymous said...

The Episcopal Organization is in concordat with the Evangelical Lutheran Organization of America...so it's the same things...the usual suspects...

Anonymous said...

Offensive on so many levels, but even on their own terms: If they were REAL feminists they wouldn't have slimmed down the Venus of Willendorf.

monika

Anonymous said...

The more I think about this, the more offensive it gets. It reminds me of early upper class "feminists" who used the movement (and their husband's ample salaries) as excuses to attend empowerment meetings while their "cleaning ladies" cared for the home at sub-par wages. Why go for the Christian brand at all? Have some integrity, womyn, and leave the support of the Parent Church.

monika

laBiscuitnapper said...

One thing they've got kind of right is publicity - there's a trailer here http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4639219646887101318&q=church&pr=goog-sl which didn't help cure my initial impression that this was a spoof of some kind...

Salome said...

If you touch it, does it make you pregnant?

Anonymous said...

Religion pretty much makes it up as it goes along, anyway. They're just more bizarre and out there about it.
And you're both shrinking away, so please don't claim that "This is why our church is losing members."

Anonymous said...

And "discreetly billed" on my credit card statement?

Anonymous said...

God the Father has REVEALED himself to us as such; if we are uncomfortable with this, we should consider a few things: (i) When we try to re-make God as we wish him to be, we reject who He is; (ii) God is the perfect Father - in our broken sinfulness, we have him as the example of how a father should be and so no one ought to be intimidated by the fatherly identity; (iii) plenty of men have had traumatic experiences with women - so what is your point?!? (iv) A lesson in the English language: there is no "man" in "hu-man" - the English word "man" is of German origin and "human" Latin. The Latin word for "man" is "homo." (v) Jesus resurrected from the dead as a man - and this is what He shall be for all eternity, just as each of shall eternally possess a body of the sex we are now. Ever heard of the Assumtion of Mary? She has her ressurected body already and is just as much woman as on earth - she, whom Catholics call "Queen of Heaven," "Queen of the Angels," " Queen of the Apostles," "Mother of God," "Mary, Seat of Wisdom" and the "Co-redemptress." (Still think Christianity has little regard for women, anyone? Does any created man being have a status which even approaches that of this created woman?

Anonymous said...

It is gravely wrong of us to "envision God in our hearts" as each of us wishes. There is only one God and He has REVEALED to us his person and nature. We MUST NOT try to re-make him in our own image, each according to his whims. God cannot be multille versions of himself anymore than reality can exist in multiple versions. Thinking or wishing for something to be other than what it is does not cause it to be so! Shall we be like the ancient Greeks whose image of gods was of entities exceeding in vanity, selfishness and ego?

Anonymous said...

What utter, simplistic and unimformed nonsense! The choosing of Dec 25 has nothing to do with Saturnalia - which some scholars in fact believe was created by the pagans to compete with the celebration of Christ's birth. The Bible indicates the date of Christ's death - the 15th day of Nisan. That can be calculated as being March 25. The Jews of first century Palestine believed that a great man (a messiah, for example) would die on the same day as he was conceived. Add nine months to 25 March and you have... tah-dah!!! Why don't you try putting down the silly PC text books and try doing some REAL research into the venerable origins of your own faith? "Pasch" comes from the Hebrew "pesach" ("passover"). (I presume you understand the connection between Passover and Easter...) As for Christmas trees, do you know which tree was in tbe center of Eden? The tree of life - which the Cross became for us. And for crying out loud, stop looking to NatGeo and the Discovery Channel to inform you about Christian history and theology!!!

Anonymous said...

You may revere her only for her role in tbe Incarnation, but for 1,900 years Christians have in fact revered her as a mediator and advocate. There is no competing with the role of Christ in this: as sons and daughters (heirs), God gives sets aside for each of us a share in his salvific work. (As St. Paul writes, my sufferings complete what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ on tbe cross.) Consider this: if your dearest friend were going into surgery tomorrow, would you not pray to God for them to be safe? Would you not mediate, intercede and advocate with God on their behalf? If Mary is already with God in Heaven, how much more can she mediate, intercede and advocate? Did not Jesus perform his first public miracle at her behest? When one wished to present a petition to the King of Israel, one went to the Queen Mother - as Christians we believe that the Davidic kingdom foreshadowed the Heavely one. Revelation tells us that the saints in Heaven assist us in this life - the communion of the mystical Body of Christ does not end when we get to Heaven; rather, it is amplified!

Anonymous said...

To paraphrase the disciple: "Lord, teach us how we ought to pray - that we may heartily disregard thee and go our own way!"

theraineyview said...

"Our Mother who is within us
we celebrate your many names.
Your wisdom come.
Your will be done,
unfolding from the depths within us."
Sounds like a pagan rite to me.

"You remind us of our limits
and we let go.
You support us in our power
and we act with courage." Sounds like self-esteem-pop-psych from the 80s to me.

"the empowerment around us
and the celebration among us
now and for ever. Amen" Uh-oh.


Text by Miriam Therese Winter

Anonymous said...

Our Mother who is within us
we celebrate your many names."

And those names would be....Isis, Astarte, Diana, Hecate, Demeter, Kali, Innana,....etc, etc,

te'Shara Chelle said...

Pagans are polytheistic, so unless they worship more than one god, they're not remotely pagan.