IMAGE AND REALITY: God’s Vision for Womanhood

What makes a woman beautiful?

If the magazines in the checkout aisle are to be believed, women are beautiful if they are lanky, blonde, and air-brushed.

If they carry a few extra pounds after that last pregnancy, if they have greying temples or a sagging chin or a furrowed brow, they are not trying hard enough!

Contemporary media–television, movies, magazines and the movie industry–all support the idea that beauty is only skin deep.  For the teen girl struggling to understand her own worth in society, it can be devastating to look in the mirror, if she has bought into the lie that “ordinary” is not good enough.

And things are just as confusing for the contemporary male.  He may be led to believe that the only woman who can make him happy is one who has certain physical characteristics:  long legs, ample breasts, a youthful physique.  In seeking this woman who will look good on his arm, he may fail to notice the truly virtuous and holy woman that God had in mind for him.

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On August 14, Ave Maria Radio will be exploring this in depth in its conference “Image and Reality.”  Al Kresta, CEO of Ave Maria Radio and host of the nationally-syndicated show Kresta in the Afternoon, explained the need for this event:

At no point has there been as great a chasm between image and reality as we face today.  The world tells us that we can have, and are entitled to, the impossible and the contradictory.  We are told we can have compact cars that are spacious, food without calories and luxury homes with low mortgages.  The world says we can have toasted snow.

The image that the world feeds us is not reality.  We are told that every woman should be a supermodel and every man should expect one.  A man today is treated in a single day to as many images of beautiful women as a man of 50 years ago probably encountered in a year.  A girl’s self-image is at an all-time low and sexual temptation for boys is at an all-time high.  Why?  Because we are told by the thousands of images we receive every day that that’s the way things are–and ought to be.

We have to fight to show that’s NOT the way things are.  There is a difference between image and reality, and our reality should be God’s reality.

Al Kresta and Teresa Tomeo, host of Catholic Connection and author of Extreme Makeover, will address this problem of knowing God’s reality in a world of unreal images on Thursday, August 14, at 6:30 p.m. in Towsley Auditorium, at Washtenaw Community College in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Don’t miss it!  For more information or to register for the event, go to

Image and Reality - bannaer


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