Second Season Schedule
July 18, 2021, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Permítanme Hablar: Allow Me to Speak
There is a Spanish phrase, permítanme hablar, or translated, “allow me to speak,” which was often referred to by Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz — the ‘mother’ of Mujerista Theology. Less a request and more a demand, permítanme hablar is reclaimed to push back against a patriarchal system that would silence, demean, or erase women in the Church and in society. Permítanme hablar is an inherently hopeful exclamation — asserting a belief that ‘what is’ isn’t what has to be. This presentation will explore what it means for women, in particular Women of Color, to demand that the church recognize their voice, and what it looks like for the church to respond as scripture requires.
August 15, 2021, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Rev. Dr. Pamela Lightsey
Believing When You Have Unbelief
Every day we watch examples of the coldness that human beings can have against one another. That coldness is on display in the horrible acts of racism, homophobia, transphobia, and xenophobia that we have seen on the rise across the last decade. Particularly for many Black women, the trauma of the ongoing killing of Black people by excessive police force and the rise of white supremacy in our nation has brought on an existential crisis, primarily about faith.
How do we speak of faith, indeed unwavering faith, when the Church seems complicit in our pain and our theological perspectives seem so insufficient? This presentation will explore these concerns and more.
September 19, 2021, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Julia Stronks, JD, PhD
Tension between Conservative Christians and the LGBTQ+ Community—How are the Supreme Court and Congress Guiding Us On Policy?
The tension between conservative religious groups and the LGBTQ+ community is going to be at the root of public policy for the foreseeable future. This summer the Supreme Court will hand down an important case that outlines the ability of a city to pass legislation that removes funding from a Catholic adoption agency which refused to allow children to be adopted by gay parents. Currently, there is legislation before Congress that deals with employment law as it relates to discrimination by Christian groups against LGBTQ+ individuals.
October 17, 2021, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Mark M. Mattison
Mary and the Stranger: Overcoming the Powers that Be
The Egyptian copy of the Gospel of Mary narrates a soul’s perilous journey upward past seven malevolent Powers that seek to restrain it.
Was Mary describing an ascent of Jesus’s soul or her own soul? Or does the soul in this story represent every person’s soul? Finally, is it a life-after-death event, or a visionary experience available to each of us now?
Missing pages from the Gospel of Mary may have contained the answers, but newly recovered pages from The Stranger’s Book help to fill in the gaps.
November 21, 2021, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Lucille Sider Dayton, PhD
Finding Hope and Healing: My Journey through Sexual Abuse and Depression
In this presentation, Lucille Sider shares her story of resilience and hope as a survivor of sexual abuse and a fear-based spirituality.
After experiencing sexual abuse at six years old and again at 15, Lucille recounts stories of abandonment that cast her into depression. Eventually, this depression led to her losing her profession as a clergywoman and clinical psychologist. After years of rehabilitation and testifying against her abuser in court, she was able to return to her work and live on her own without fear. Eventually, she faced the complicated issue of forgiveness for her abusers.
December 19, 2021, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Reta Halteman Finger, PhD
“Daughters of Sarah”: A History of Christian Feminism, 1974-1996
A small ad in a Christian social justice magazine caught my eye. “Subscribe to a bi-monthly feminist newsletter, Daughters of Sarah. $2/year.” The secular women’s movement was catching on even in evangelical churches! But “why Sarah?” I wondered. I subscribed and soon found out!
This presentation will trace the growth of the publication from newsletter to magazine and from evangelical to ecumenical in its 22-year existence. It paralleled the rise of the Evangelical (and Ecumenical) Women’s Caucus to our current “Christian Feminism Today” organization. Anecdotes and stories from various “Daughters” who contributed to our collective will enhance this journey.
January 16, 2022, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Does Jesus Love Me?
We who grew up in a restrictive, patriarchal religion can spend our lives worrying whether breaking from that religion has put us outside God’s grace, and Jesus’s love.
If anything, that break drew us nearer to Them.
February 20, 2022, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Deborah Niederer Saxon, PhD
Disappeared No Longer: Women Bearing Witness in Ways that Transgress and Transform
The history of the Christianity that has dominated our past has often been grim in terms of the way that women have been perceived, represented, and treated. And yet . . . . The voices of women newly discovered in long-lost or neglected texts have challenged prevailing norms and demonstrated that our history is not a single story.
Hearing these voices anew provides hope in challenging the status quo regarding women today.
March 20, 2022, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Banquets instead of Bridges: Authentic Relational Work for the Church
Recently, the Washington National Cathedral faced criticism when its leadership asked Max Lucado, a pastor who has previously made homophobic comments, to preach. While this invitation was meant to ‘build bridges’ across theological disagreement, it caused harm, especially among LGBTQ+ members of the Cathedral and the wider Episcopal Church.
This kind of ‘bridge building’, while well intentioned, is misplaced—oriented towards those with privilege rather than marginalized victims of injustice, in this case, LGBTQ+ people.
This workshop will provide stories and practices to inform the relational work the Church needs to be doing: building authentic relationships with marginalized folks.
April 17, 2022, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Linda Kay Klein
Recovery from Purity Culture: It Starts with Knowing—and Loving—Yourself
What if “pride” is a virtue and “humility” a sin? Not for everyone. Nor in every situation. But for oppressed people trained to think too little of themselves so as not to threaten the power and authority of those who think too much?
I’ve been working with women and members of the LGBTQIA community raised in purity culture for 16+ years. Again and again, I see what Valarie Saiving calls an “underdevelopment or negation of the self” that is the single greatest obstacle to recovering from the harm purity culture engenders.
This session will explore how to: develop a solid sense of self; know (and feel!) one’s own feelings; name (and advocate for!) one’s own wants, needs, values, beliefs, ethics, and—for those who want to go there—relationship with God.
May 15, 2022, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
Shirley Paulson, PhD
Three Reasons for Hope from the Secret Revelation of John
You may never have heard of the Secret Revelation of John—not to be confused with the biblical Revelation TO John. In our discussion of the text, we’ll unveil the secret and consider why more Christians could benefit from studying this ancient text.
The Secret Revelation of John is a Christian message because the Savior is Christ, although this Savior sometimes gender-bends: sometimes Jesus, sometimes female, and sometimes unidentified. Its message of hope is based on the unwavering continuity of good. But the surprising twist is the way its three gems reveal the source of empowerment for everyone.
June 19, 2022, 8:30 pm EDT (5:30 pm PDT)
The Arc of Human Slavery and Justice
Slavery has been a human reality from the earliest civilizations, and it persists today. With around 40 million people currently enslaved, there are now more enslaved than in any previous time in history. Yet there is hope. And there are ways that ordinary people can resist and make meaningful contributions to the modern abolitionist movement.
This presentation compares the stories of biblical slaves with their modern counterparts, providing the definitions and statistics of modern–day slavery, and explains practical steps concerned global citizens can take to make a difference.
First Season Presentations
All past presentations are archived and available for viewing by anyone registered or subscribing to the current series.
Alena Ruggerio, Ph.D.
The Gracespeak Lexicon
In the twenty-first century, Christian feminism requires a whole new vocabulary. We cannot achieve feminist justice theologically without also winning it rhetorically.
Dr. Jamie Marich
Transforming the Wounds of Spiritual Abuse
Spiritual abuse is whenever God or another spiritual construct is used as a weapon to wound, manipulate, or control a vulnerable person. A legitimate form of trauma, there are many pathways to healing that can be explored once the wounds have been realized and identified. In this talk, trauma specialist and author Dr. Jamie Marich helps participants to identify where we are stuck and develop a plan for moving forward in the healing journey.
Ally Kateusz, Ph.D.
Early Christian Memories Preserved in Art: Parallel Male and Female Officiants at the Eucharistic Table, Jesus as Intersex, and Liturgical Traditions of the Magdalene
Censorship, both ancient and modern, has erased depictions of women with liturgical authority. The three oldest iconographic artifacts to depict people at the table in a real church all depict women at the table. These three artifacts, each buried in the early Christian era, provide witness to the hidden history of women officiants at the Christian altar table.
Diann L. Neu, D.Min., LMSW
Stirring Waters: Feminist Liturgies for Justice
For almost four decades, religious leaders and communities around the world have turned to the Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual (WATER) for feminist liturgies for justice. Now—in celebration of the organization’s thirty-fifth anniversary—Diann Neu created Stirring Waters: Feminist Liturgies for Justice, a useful resource of fifty-two powerful and moving liturgies, ready-made to help communities celebrate inspiring women of faith, develop a richer and deeper spirituality, and take action for justice.
Join Diann as she shares this rich and lifegiving treasure of feminist liturgies that challenge us to nourish souls, focus passions, and work for change. Reflect on great women like the prophet Miriam and Julian of Norwich; provoke and disturb on occasions like Earth Day and World Water Day; energize on International Women’s Day and during Black History Month; and rejuvenate drooping spirits with liturgies of healing and gratitude. Never again will you scramble or struggle to provide community prayer that is worthwhile, nourishing, and even electrifying.
Was the Gospel of John Changed to Suppress Mary Magdalene?
In a 2017 Harvard Theological Review article, Elizabeth Schrader argued that the text of John’s Gospel was changed at a very early stage of the text transmission – specifically the article explores whether the character Martha was added to the Lazarus story by early copyists familiar with Luke’s Gospel. The study examines photographs of the oldest surviving copy of John 11 (Papyrus 66), as well as transcriptions of over a hundred other manuscripts. This presentation, which is a summary of her HTR article, raises the question of whether John’s Gospel was altered by early copyists in order to diminish the authority and presentation of Mary Magdalene.
Rev. Mary Lokers
Dinah Avenged and Vindicated
A young girl was passionate to follow God. Due to her perception of the patriarchal system inequality demonstrated in the story of Jacob, his male children, and Dinah, a wedge distanced her from her “old white man in the sky” Divinity. Rev. Lokers shares that after years of personal study, her eyes opened to Biblical metaphoric truths that brought healing of the great divide that separated her from the Spirit of love and light.
Troubadours of Divine Bliss
Troubadours of Divine Bliss are an internationally touring music duo and ministers from Louisville, KY, with guitar, accordion, and harmonies “that could melt a stone statue” (BBC Radio Liverpool). They play a style of music sometimes described as Americana-Spirit, Gypsy-Bluegrass, and Soul-Folk. They’ve been voted “Best Folk Band” in New Orleans and Louisville.
They are spiritual, environmental, and social justice activists who sing of the Love that springs from within, respect for the Earth, human rights, and healing the heart.
Rev. Dr. Leslie R. Harrison
Hush, Somebody’s Calling Your Name
Throughout history so many women have been hushed, told to keep their voices down, told to remain silent. But some refused. Some wrote compelling words or spoke up, naming systems of oppression and in doing so, brought women’s truth into cultural awareness. In this workshop we’ll look at the challenges involved in heeding the call to humbly name your reality, using the examples set by some courageous feminists and womanists. Sharing words and stories is a powerful act, which can often serve as the first step in the process of dismantling oppressive systems.
Chandra Snell, Ph.D.
What’s Your Story?
There is no Christianity without story, and our story is God’s story. Viewing our story as God’s story helps us walk humbly and live courageously–no matter what.
Tara J. Hannah
Fleshing Out a Feminist Faith
Faith will ultimately call us beyond words and into action. The Fleshing Out a Feminist Faith workshop will explore how women can embody faith in their female flesh to become a greater force that moves our world.
Rev. Dr. Christy Gunter Sim Hailey
The Artistic Process as a Healing Tool
Psychological and emotional healing doesn’t have to come strictly from traditional forms of verbal processing. There are other methods available which can strengthen your self-confidence, increase your resilience, and help you re-connect with your body and sensory experience. The artistic process is one such method. It doesn’t matter if you consider yourself an artist or not, everyone can benefit from developing an artistic practice to use as a tool for healing.
Janene Cates Putman
What She Says, LIVE!
Join Janene Cates Putman, the author of CFT’s What She Says blog, as she interviews some of the dynamic individuals who helped shape EEWC-CFT, and in doing so, expanded the scope and reach of Christian feminism. This will be a fun-filled and light-hearted opportunity to hear some stories, look at where we’ve been as an organization, and think about where we are headed in the future.