Honoring Women’s Experience in Worship: Two Resources

DoYouSeeThisWomanThe Women in Leadership Project is glad to commend two resources for worship.

First, in the introduction to the Do You See This Woman? worship series we share the following:

“Worship that gives voice to any group that has, at times, been left out or devalued is worship that offers the whole church an opportunity to experience God in a fuller and deeper way. Thus, this series is designed to minister to both women and men.

Each of the five services in this series focuses on stories of biblical women in ways that give voice to the dynamics of patriarchy today. Worshipers are led to lament the harm that accompanies women’s experiences of patriarchy and are guided in a process toward community-wide justice and healing.”

The themes of the services are listed below, along with their page numbers. Each service includes a focus statement, call to worship, confession and assurance, reflections on the biblical text, song suggestions, a sending blessing, and weekly devotions.

Service 1: Vulnerability and Strength . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Service 2: Acknowledging Our Pain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Service 3: Finding Our Way toward Healing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
Service 4: Righting Relationships, Becoming Ourselves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
Service 5: Listening for the Voice of Wisdom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
~ ~ ~ ~

Second, we’re excited that the Heritage Sunday resources for 2013 focus on The Gifts of Women (also visit the Heritage Sunday resources homepage). They are authored by Hilary J. Scarsella, co-coordinator of the Women in Leadership Project. Heritage Sunday is scheduled for October 27, 2013, but these worship resources could be used at any time. From the introduction:

“This year, the focus of Heritage Sunday is on remembering the many different ways that the church sometimes has and other times has not valued the gifts of women. We will be remembering times of joy and times of pain. We will be acknowledging the diversity of thought there is in our country and in our congregation in terms of what it means to value women according to our Christian faith.”

These resources include a call to worship, song suggestions, scripture texts, a drama, confession and assurance, reflection idea, litany of response and a sending blessing.

For deeper learning, you will also find an extensive reading list of books and articles by or about Mennonite women. Here a few examples:

  • Clemens, Lois Gunden. Woman Liberated. Scottdale, Pa: Herald Press, 1971.
  • Goossen, Rachel Waltner. Women against the Good War: Conscientious Objection and Gender on the American Home Front, 1941-1947. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1997.
  • Graber, Jennifer. 2003. “Mennonites, gender, and the Bible in the 1920s and ’30s.” Conrad Grebel Review 21, no. 2: 95-106.
  • Kasdorf, Julia. The Body and the Book: Writing from a Mennonite Life: Essays and Poems. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.
  • Stoltzfus, Regina Shands. “Black, female and Mennonite: an exploration of identity as counter-cultural acts of resistance.” Mennonite Life (Online) 65, (June 1, 2011)

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