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  • Count Your Blessings: Day 23


    In India, tens of millions of women face discrimination and abuse for being single, divorced or widowed.
    Pray for fair treatment for women everywhere.


    I am fifty, single, straight and female.  I have experienced discrimination on the grounds of gender, marital status and age.  I have experienced sexual harassment in the (secular) workplace and inappropriate advances from married, male Christians, including ordained ministers.  It may be the case that under UK law women have rights, but it does not always translate in to lived experience.  I am not for a moment comparing my experiences with the horrendous injustices in other nations, rather I am noting that that it is a topic that resonates, and that this will shape my response.


    Holy Spirit, Sophia, wisdom, you personify the feminie within the divine

    Jesus, you compared yourself to a mother hen

    God you are beyond any labels, yet you mother as well as father us...


    We pray for the women of our world

    In all their wonderful diversity

    In the richness of their life experiences


    We pray for justice so that

    The single woman

    The married woman

    The divorced woman

    The widowed woman


    The educated woman

    The illiterate woman


    The straight woman

    The gay woman

    The X-Y woman

    The by-surgery woman


    The rich woman

    The poor woman


    The healthy woman

    The sick woman

    The dying woman


    The mother woman

    The childless woman


    The warrior woman

    The pacifist woman


    The career woman

    The homemaker woman


    The woman with learning disabilities

    The woman with physical disabilities

    The woman with mental health concerns


    The powerful woman

    The powerless woman




    Every woman


    May be treated fairly


    And having discovered what that means

    May share that experience with every child, man and woman

    Until your justice reaches all people.



    My pledge

    Today - one prayer

    Total - £23.75, four prayers, one rant and one e-petition signed

  • Omniglot

    I was searching online to find the equivalent words or phrases used in non-English languages for a specific expression, in readiness for Sunday's all agey bit.  In the process I stumbled on this fascinating page which allows you to read the Tower of Babel story in oodles of different languages, and so spot similarities and differences.  If you have a few minutes spare it's worth a quick gander!

  • Count Your Blessings: Day 22


    Women make up 64% of the world’s illiterate.  Have a look at one of your bookshelves.  Give 10p for each book by a female author.


    OK, so I have to begin with a pet grouse of mine... I dislike adjectives being used as nouns, especially when they are prefaced with the definite article.  I know it's a practice of which even Jesus appears guilty ('the poor will always be with you'; though to be pedantic ptokos IS a noun, and the distinction gets lost in translation) but in recent years I have come to appreciate, from some minority groups, how awful it is to be lumped together as an adjective "the disabled", "the disadvantaged" etc.  So 'the illiterate' makes me immediately think "the illiterate what?  cabbage? goldfish? ah... person".  I blame that ministerial college where I trained, it was them what got me into this habit!!  (As an aside, I always find the title "disabled toilet" disconcerting - I'd rather they supplied one that was functional...;-) )


    So, back to the point in hand, and actually the little rant illustrates precisely the privilege of being a literate woman, able to determine meaning from squiggles on piece of paper.

    As it happens, I am doing this at home, so the book shelves to hand are filled mostly with fiction.  Were I at church, and choosing to look at a shelf of theology books, I expect it would prove a cheaper day!  I have elected to use the top shelf of the bookcase in my living room, knowing, even before I do the count that there are nine Susan Howatch novels, two by Marilyn Robinson and one by Barbara Kingsolver up there...

    Ulp!  No less than 21 books on that shelf are written by women, so that's £2.10.  For curiosity, I have picked another shelf where my old engineering text books are located and there is nothing written by a woman... maybe that of itself says something about access to education, gender stereotypes and societal norms?


    My Pledge

    Today - £2.10

    Total - £23.75, three prayers, one rant and one e-petition signed

  • New Month - New Jigsaw

    Having discovered the pleasure of jigsaws, I am now embarking on another...

    Poppy_Garden_Black_Cat.jpgWill keep me occupied in my free time - and is undoubtedly more 'healthy' than watching television, social networking, or playing games on the computer.

  • Count Your Blessings: Day 21

    The have way mark, or near enough, for those counting carefully!


    Every day approximately 800 women die from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. 99% of these deaths occur in developing countries.

    Give 20p for every pregnant woman you know who received a decent standard of medical care in the Last year.


    Every women I know, or every woman I know of... I seem to be turning into a semantic nightmare this year!  I have one friend in England who gave birth in the last year, so that bit is easy.  There are currently two women who regularly share in the life of the Gathering Place who are pregnant, two who come occasionally with a babies I think are under a year old , and at a slightly further remove at least one other newish grandchild.  But then there's the Toddler group which has lots of bumps and babies... should I count them in or not?  Oh decisions, decisions... I think I'll keep it simple and opt for £1! 


    My Pledge

    Today - £1

    Total - £21.65, three prayers, one rant and one e-petition signed