Friday, June 24, 2005

Virtual Insanity

I have looked into our future, and it was horrifying.

This article by Hanna Rosin, "God and Country," made me want to vomit profusely. It was very well done but the subject matter was painful to my feminist/liberal eyes. Interestingly enough, when I was in Washington I saw tons of these interns, my age or younger, running around. White college kids from the Bible Belt working for the conservative rep's.

Particularly disturbing quotes from this article:

In a speech at the American Enterprise Institute after the 2000 election, he [Karl Rove] said that the President had lost the popular vote because fewer than expected 'white, evangelical Protestants' had come to the polls.

(Oy vay.)

The school has to make room for a student like Farahn Morgan, a ballerina who is trying out to be a Rockette and likes to provoke her roommates by saying she's going to Victoria's Secret ('People, everyone wears a bra!'), and for a junior like Ben Adams, who sent out a nine-page e-mail to the entire student body before the spring formal reminding the girls to dress modestly. 'Lust is sin,' it said. 'It is sin for you to tempt us. It is...unloving. Unsisterly. Un-Christlike.'

(Yeah, it's our fault that you can't control your lust.)

Matthew du Mee, who was an R.A., told me that if he saw a boy and girl sitting too close for too long he would pull the boy aside and tell him to stop, because 'the guy is supposed to be the leader in the relationship.'


Elisa believes the Bible dictates that 'there are different roles for men and women' [...].

(Such as staying home to raise children and forgetting you ever had any talent or potential, Elisa? Don't get me wrong, raising children is a noble pursuit, but if women are excluded or exclude themselves from public spheres such as politics, men will be making all our decisions for us.)

I feel sick.

Anyway, I saw Fellow Seeker and Veteran Seeker yesterday, which is always fun. Before we saw V.S., though, F.S. and I were sitting in a park, talking. We share a common - shall I say distaste? - for St. Paul's ideas about women and gays. So, we were just sitting there, talking, when all of a sudden he says, "I hate Paul. When I get to heaven I'm going to give him a kick in the ass," and I nearly fell off the bench with uncontrollable laughter. When I regained composure, I said to him, "You know that's going in the blog."


FP said...

St. Paul loved women in the Church, just look at his praise for Phoebe and Prisca. I'm sure he loved gays too, but he didn't want them to act in a way contrary to the Gospel.

"I commend to you Phoebe our sister, who is (also) a minister of the church at Cenchreae,
that you may receive her in the Lord in a manner worthy of the holy ones, and help her in whatever she may need from you, for she has been a benefactor to many and to me as well.
Greet Prisca and Aquila, my co-workers in Christ Jesus,
who risked their necks for my life, to whom not only I am grateful but also all the churches of the Gentiles;
greet also the church at their house." (Romans 16:1-5)

"In the early Church, women gave not only their time, energy, and talents to the Christian cause, but also their lives. There is no suggestion from anything we know about the early martyrs that women among them held a subservient place or were dying for a cause that kept them in subjection or that marginalized them. Quite the reverse. Christian women astonished the Roman authorities by firm adherence to principles: choosing a life of virginity and consecration to Christ, for instance, rather than marriage to an eligible pagan or opting for a cruel death rather than renounce adherence to a creed that they articulated well. Those women who gave their lives for Christ as martyrs in the early Church are still commemorated by Catholics today and we list their names lovingly at Mass: Agnes, Cecilia, Anastasia, Agatha, Lucy. . . ."

"This notion of a woman as responsible before God, knowing that she must take decisions affecting her own salvation and that of others, is central to the Catholic faith. There has never been any suggestion that a woman didn’t need to think, that martyrdom was beyond her, that really important contact with God was the privilege of men alone.
"All the pagan religions of Christ’s day had priestesses. If, as some claim, Christ was conditioned by social patterns, he would most certainly have ordained women. He had many women followers, any one of whom might have been a candidate. But he acted in sovereign freedom. In choosing only men he knew exactly what he was doing. God does not make mistakes. It is crude and absurd to suggest—as some campaigners do—that Christ somehow pines from heaven that he did not live in the 1990s with affirmative action programs and equal opportunity laws. Every possible aspect of the Incarnation was timed to the last split second: Christ’s arrival in the womb of Mary, the start of his ministry at Cana when she told us, "Do whatever he tells you."

When God became man, when the word became flesh, it was as a male. And the Church was to be his bride. There is a mystery here concerning maleness and femaleness. Catholic women have benefited from a culture which recognizes the meaning of womanhood. In a remote convent where he was imprisoned during Stalin’s time, Poland’s primate Stephan Cardinal Wyszinski, wrote in his diary:

"I must remember: Whenever a woman enters the room, always rise no matter how busy you are. Rise, whether it is the Mother Superior, or Sister Kleofasa, who tends the heater. Remember that she always reminds you of the Handmaid of the Lord, at the sound of whose name the Church also rises. Remember that in this way you pay a debt of respect to your Immaculate Mother, with whom this woman is more closely associated than you. In this way you pay a debt towards your own mother, who served you with her own flesh and blood. Rise without delay, and you will be the better for it."

---Joanna Bogle ,

sojourness said...

That's where I think Paul's hypocrisy lies... he acknowledged Phoebe as a "minister" but he also wrote that women were to be silent in church. Where's the logic? What was she, a mime?

fp said...

While women could publicly pray and prophesy in church (cf. 1 Cor. 11:1–16), they could not teach or have authority over a man (cf. 1 Tim. 2:11–14), since these were two essential functions of the clergy. Nor could women publicly question or challenge the teaching of the clergy (cf. 1 Cor. 14:34–38). Nonetheless, Paul vigorously upholds the equality of men and women (cf. Gal 3:28).

sojourness said...

What about 1 Corinthians 14:34, where it says "women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak"?

fp said...

speak meaning to preach, as only the ordained are allowed, for that is there purpose, to serve in said fashion

musafir said...

A kindred spirit!

On June 24th I,too, posted an item (A College for Grooming Stepford Wives...and Husbands) after reading Hanna Rosin's article in The New Yorker.

Stay well and keep writing.

sojourness said...

I love your post's title! Will definitely keep reading your blog.