As a writer and contemplative I spend most of my time cloistered, in solitude and reflection. During the past weekend I attended a conference in Philadelphia for the Worldwide Ordination of Women in the Catholic Church. Topics covered by the various speakers spanned a variety of issues including: gender equality, violence against women, interfaith awareness, spirituality, and the new emerging cosmology/theology.
The conference concluded on Sunday with a feminist liturgy that was inclusive and alive with the Spirit. Following the liturgy we heard a final keynote address by Teresa Forcades. She spoke about three concepts pertaining to the values of:
- Ordained/non-ordained ministry
Another focus of her talk was about time, space, and sexuality with regard to our human experience. Teresa is a physician and Benedictine nun. She is a contemplative but also a deeply passionate social activist and she has recently entered the political arena in her native Catalan. She is a woman with a strong intellect and deep faith who responds to the world’s issues with fearless and thoughtful action. While I listened, I felt a part of my spirit that had long been asleep…awaken.
After Teresa’s talk concluded I joined with a group of women and men from the conference and we marched to a city park in Philadelphia across from a Catholic Church to make a statement of presence for the ordination of women. It was invigorating to take “sacred action,” to make a political/religious statement for gender equality and women’s religious and spiritual rights.
Yesterday I stepped out of my usual cloistered more passive way of being, to join others and take a stand in a public way. I feel a renewed prophetic call to sacred action emerging within me. How this call will take form will unfold in the months ahead. A fire and passion for social justice has been rekindled and it is blazing within me. I call the fire, Holy Outrage, for the many global issues that are affecting women’s lives today.
During the liturgy on Sunday morning we sang a song. The haunting refrain, for me, illuminates my renewed prophetic call to sacred action:
My heart shall sing of the day you bring.
Let the fires of your justice burn.
Wipe away all tears, for the dawn draws near,
and the world is about to turn!
Do you sense a prophetic call for your heart and spirit to take sacred action?
What does the concept, that “the world is about to turn” evoke in you?