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International Women’s Day, Suicide and the Bankruptcy of Christian Theology

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Kajetan Sosnowski / Wikimedia

Kajetan Sosnowski / Wikimedia

 

On many occasions in a variety of settings, I’ve often wondered, “What does Christian Theology have to say to women?” Usually, I don’t have to think too long. Throughout the development of Christian Theology, women have been denigrated to a subservient role. Every figure of divinity is considered to be a man. Most heroes in our scriptures are men. I don’t think this happened by accident. I think there is an undeniable thread of sexism that runs throughout Christian Theology. Women have got to be the most patient Christians to ever exist. Without them, the faith would never have survived. If you go to most churches, women fill the pews. It has been this way for sometime. Without women, there is no Christianity. Despite the denigration, there is very little theology that pushes liberation. In fact, there is more theology intended to keep women in their place than anything else. The evil trap of sexism continues to hold the entire faith hostage. The bankruptcy of Christian Theology is that it has never spoken to the completeness of human existence. Women have consistently been left out and pushed down. I’m convinced that our faith has very little to say to women at all. Not too long ago, this became even more apparent to me.

 

As I held the phone, horrible news met my ears. A short time before I got the call, a high school teacher had walked into the bathroom to discover a young woman had just committed suicide. The student struggled with much heartache and decided there was nothing left to live for. It seems that women consistently feel this way in our society. As soon as I grieved the news, I began to wonder what Christian Theology might have been able to do to help the young woman. After a few seconds, I realized that the answer is an unequivocal nothing. Christianity Theology has completely left women out since the beginning. Christianity is a religion that banishes women to hopeless places…like school bathrooms.

 

Since the call, I’ve had time to think about just how urgent it is for Christian Theology to be destroyed. We have to take apart everything. For, only by a more equitable reconstruction can our faith be considered truly Christian. We have to start at the beginning. Eve is not the villain. We have to move through the Old Testament. There should be an equal number of sheroes as there are heroes. In the midst of the Gospels, we should use the multiple accounts that were written by women. The writings of Paul should be supplemented by contradictory writings of female Christian writers. The Trinity should be feminized as much as it is masculinized. Since Jesus represented the entirety of humanity, why can’t Jesus have a vagina? With regards to the end, there is no eschatology worth a shit that doesn’t provide hope for the young woman in the bathroom. Why can’t we open the canon back up? Though the possibilities of deconstruction and reconstructive liberation are endless, I worry that we won’t change. I worry that my daughter will end up hopeless. On this International Women’s Day, let us not forget that Christian Theology begins and ends in that bathroom.

 

Amen.

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