Mother-Work: Voice of the Mother

Photo on 2012-12-19 at 23.58 #2

For the last two years I have sung in a gospel choir that has changed my life. A chorister since I was seven, I have ever prided myself on my technique and my discipline. So it is that I found my first few months with this choir challenging. I didn’t understand why our conductor wasn’t stricter, why he didn’t correct our rhythms more, why he didn’t direct the dynamics of every phrase. “When was he going to kick us into shape?” I wondered. We needed a little bit of the hard stick.This is a sma … [Read more...]

Mother-work: God is Like a Mother Hen


When I was part of an Episcopal Women to Women trip to Jerusalem, we went to a chapel called Dominus Flevit on the western slope of the Mount of Olives just across the KidronValley from Jerusalem.  The church designed in the shape of a teardrop has a picture window overlooking the city and at the foot of the altar is a mosaic of a mother hen gathering her chicks under her wings recalling Christ’s words “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! Ho … [Read more...]

Rachel Barenblat – mother, writer and rabbi – on the poetry of motherhood


Here at Women of Spirit and Faith we are all about weaving of our lovely young leaders, Ayesha Mattu hosts a blog called "Love InshAllah: The Secret Love Lives of  American Muslim Women" (also the title of her extraordinary book).This month Love InshAllah reviews a beautiful collection of  poetry from poet, mother and rabbi, Rachel Barenblat. In Waiting To Unfold  Rabbi Barenblat documents her pregnancy and the first year of her son’s life through her powerful v … [Read more...]

My Mother-Work as Woman Warrior


I married young in order to have somewhere to shelter my siblings, as we came from parents whose parenting consisted in religion-prescribed punishment. The matriarch whom I chose as my mother-in law was happy to include me and my family under her huge heart and in her powerful arms. Tragically, she was taken by cancer before the birth of her first grandchild, a girl. During her dying, my husband was also dying; his manhood was dependent on his mother's strength. I was still an … [Read more...]

Mother-work: Mothering is Helping Others


Mother.  When most people think about the word, they think of the woman who raised them as a child. But what does the word mother really mean? Does it have something to do with the person who raised you? Or is there more to the word then there seems at first glance? From my perspective, a mother is someone who takes care of others, a person who helps someone that cannot help him/herself.For me helping others is something I enjoy very much. I am planning on going on my fourth mission trip … [Read more...]

We invite you to blog on: mothering and “Mother-Work”


Women of Spirit and Faith has joined with multiple organizations to invite events across the Earth on Mother's Day in celebration of Mothers, Grandmothers, Aunties - ALL women - as the Earth's original peacekeepers. As part of the celebrations, we extend an invitation to you to send us a blog of 300-700 words on the topic of "Mother Work". Included in this broad concept is not only traditional mothering – caring for children – but also all of the other ways in which we express our role as care … [Read more...]

Why I am…an Urban Priestess


I’ve been in engaged in an on-going dialogue with the invisible world and the Divine since childhood. Direct revelation has been my calling from early on.With few choices to pursue in early adulthood for women: convent sister, nun or perhaps after much hardship…possible sainthood, I concluded there must be another path. After much research and an initiation into a path of service…the urban priestess was born.The definition of a mystic is someone who wants to engage in direct conversation … [Read more...]

Why I am…discovering spirituality in nature


In early evening after a cold spring rain in Zuccotti Park in New York City (a year and a half after the end of the Occupy Wall encampment), I meditate with others and find deep peace. Yet my discoveries of spirituality in nature begin years before, perhaps in childhood on Illinois’ suburban prairies the first time I feel immense stillness after a fierce windstorm. Even now, I discover spirituality in nature’s furious glory—the wild riot of spring’s first blooms after a long winter, or the temper … [Read more...]

Why I am a…Seeker of The Sacred Spirit


All efforts to put words to what we feel seem woefully inadequate when we are confronted with the overwhelmingly Sacred Spirit of the universe. Since the beginning of recorded history, humans have attempted with symbols, dances, and words to share their experiences. We have used meditation and hallucination to recreate and share those freeing feelings.As a Roman Catholic, my religion had rituals that included litanies of terms by which we called upon "God" and the saints. We had chants, s … [Read more...]

Why I am an…Episcopagan


I have always loved being in nature and when six years old would sneak out of my home at night and visit my sacred pond in the woods that was my sanctuary.  I talked to God starting at age three and have not stopped.  When I was eight years old I was baptized in the Episcopal Church that has nurtured me with ancient and modern rituals, music, prayers and the lack of “should nots.” When I was taking confirmation classes at the age of twelve I asked the priest if Jesus really was the son of God.  B … [Read more...]