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The Mother of All Liturgies

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William Crawley | 13:07 UK time, Wednesday, 24 May 2006

icon.jpgSince we've been talking about Jean-Claude La Marre's black Jesus, how about a female Jesus? The Women's Ministries department of the Episcopal Church in the United States (ECUSA) have proposed a new liturgy for duscussion which feminises Jesus as "our Mother". It includes prayers such as this:

Blessed be the Lady who births, redeems and sanctifies us. And blessed be all of her creation forever. Amen
Loving Lady, have mercy. Mother Jesus, have mercy. Loving Lady, have mercy.

This is certain to raise some theological hackles on both sides of the Atlantic, and will be dismissed, I'm sure, as litugical cross-dressing by conservative critics. But it calls to mind, for me, another example of the feminisation of the male, this time within the Bible itself. Paul, writing to the church in Galatia, embraces the role of a mother figure: "My children, I must go through the pain of giving birth to you all over again, until Christ is formed in you". (Gal. 4:19)

P.S., Duh Vinci Code conspiracists who may take comfort in this liturgy of the sacred feminine should check this out. Just think: what could Dan Brown could do with this one?


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