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Women Erased: Mary Magdalene and the Gospel of John with Elizabeth Schrader

In today’s Bibles, Lazarus has two sisters, Mary and Martha. But poring over hundreds of hand-copied early Greek and Latin manuscripts of the Gospel, Schrader found the name Martha had been altered. The scribes scratched out one Greek letter and replaced it with another, thereby changing the original name “Mary” to read “Martha.” They then split one woman into two. Schrader argues that the Mary of the original text is Mary Magdalene, not Martha or Martha’s sister, Mary. The two sisters belong to another story, in the Gospel of Luke, that is not repeated in John’s Gospel.

Elizabeth Schrader is a Ph.D. candidate in Early Christianity at Duke University. Her research interests include the New Testament Gospels, the Nag Hammadi corpus, Mary Magdalene, textual criticism, and feminist theology. She holds an M.A. and an S.T.M. from the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church. Her work about the potential suppression of Mary Magdalene was published in the Harvard Theological Review and featured by both the Daily Beast and Religion News Service.

Schrader has focused her research on the way Mary Magdalene’s role was deliberately downplayed by biblical scribes to minimize her importance. Specifically, she looks at the story of the raising of Lazarus told in the Gospel of John. In today’s Bibles, Lazarus has two sisters, Mary and Martha.

Read Elizabeth Schrader’s groundbreaking article here. 

Prayer Service for the Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary

FutureChurch’s Women Witnesses for Racial Justice series continues with a celebration on the Solemnity of the Assumption, honoring the power and creativity of women – particularly women of color. Presider: Vickey McBride Witness: Naudia Loftis Readers: Crystal Catalan and Rose Lue Music reprinted and streamed under ONE LICENSE #A-737115.

Women Erased: Patriarchal Constructs of Women in the Bible and Lectionary with Rev. Wil Gafney, Ph.D.

Hebrew Bible Scholar, Rev. Wil Gafney., Ph.D., argues that the overwhelming majority of Christians receive their scripture mediated through a lectionary. Lectionaries are not simply as androcentric as are the scriptures, but women are even less well represented than they are in the biblical text. To the degree that biblical texts function as scripture for religious readers, it ought to be possible to tell the story of God and God’s people through the most marginalized characters in the text. Though the bible is an androcentric document steeped in patriarchy, a women’s lectionary should demonstrate and grapple with the gender constructs of the text rather than romanticize heroines.

2021 Mary of Magdala Virtual Liturgy

FutureChurch celebrates the 2021 Feast of St. Mary of Magdala. Our virtual liturgy, “Mary of Magdala and Many Others: A Global Celebration of Catholic Women,” was led by Lucy Rieger with preaching from Kayla August. Read by FutureChurch participants from all over the world, our “Litany of Naming” helped us learn about seven Catholic women engaged in amazing ministries and provided participants an opportunity to lift their own names.

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2021 Mary of Magdala Art Tour

Medievalist, Dr. Christine Axen, Ph.D. offers a presentation entitled “Un-Erasing Mary of Magdala: Scenes of the Crucifixion.”

Dr. Christine Axen is a medievalist with a specialization in French religious history and female religiosity in the Middle Ages.  She received her doctorate from Boston University, and currently teaches at Fordham University in New York.

Enacting Vatican II: Four-part Series with Maureen Sullivan, OP

Sr. Maureen Sullivan, OP leads this four-part education series about the contributions of theologians who laid the groundwork for the Council, the documents, and how to make Vatican II a greater reality today. Videos to each of the presentations and PDFs of Sr. Maureen’s presentations can be found below.

Dr. Maureen Sullivan is a Dominican Sister of Hope from New York and Professor Emerita of Theology at St. Anselm College in New Hampshire. She received her master of arts in Theology from Manhattan College in the Bronx and her PhD in Theology from Fordham University, also in the Bronx. The Second Vatican Council, along with its impact on our Church, is at the center of her theological research. She has written two books on Vatican II: 101 Questions and Answers on Vatican II (2002) and The Road to Vatican II: Key Changes in Theology (2007), both published by Paulist Press.


Session One – General Introduction

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Session Two – The Council Looks at the Modern World

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Session Three – The Council Looks at the Laity

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Session Four – The Council Looks at the Church Itself

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