The holy witnesses of Martha, Mary, Mary Magdalene & the Syrophoenician woman

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Greetings during these weeks of summer. I hope they provide opportunities for you to enjoy parks, swimming pools, beaches or mountains, to reconnect with family and friends, or to engage in a fun hobby awaiting your slower pace.

We had hoped to be sharing our synthesis report this week and apologize for its delay as a member of our design team needed to tend to the health emergencies of relatives. Thanks for your prayers for needed healing. We are using this time to translate the synthesis into Spanish and hope to share both the English and Spanish versions soon.

About this week’s newsletter

Sunday’s Gospel reading highlighted the sisterly quarrel between Martha and Mary over “diakonia” – service. It’s an interesting and multi-layered text to contemplate, and in our preaching section below we feature a couple of reflections from Dr. Susan McGurgan on Catholic Women Preach and myself in U.S. Catholic (posted below). 

This week our Church celebrates the Feast of St. Mary Magdalene, and I invite you to join me in pondering how the holy witness of Martha, Mary, Mary Magdalene and the Syrophoenician woman continue to ripple out and influence our own times as we discern the Holy Spirit’s call today.

Share this Article

“[I hope the Church ordains women to the diaconate] to bring a wider witness and expression of God’s life, love, and presence to the people of God. Women’s voices and leadership will heal, encourage and empower the lives of men, women, and children. It will call forth a new understanding of church vocation and enrich Catholic family life.”
Deedee Van Dyke
Catholic Chaplain, Joliet, IL
“The first Apostle was a woman, Mary Magdalena. She continues to remain a tower of strength for women in ministry today. If more women were ordained to the diaconate in the Roman Catholic Church, I believe we would have more meaningful and spiritually enriching homilies, and our liturgies would embrace and welcome all to the Eucharistic table.”
Sonja Grace
“If I was ordained as a deacon, it would not be a means to an end, but rather it would be a continual invitation to a deeper and broader journey with Christ. Deacons are asked to become outwardly more visible as hands in service to the Church. To respond to such a vocation would be a treasure, a deepening of my inner faith life enriched by the outward experiences of ministry and service. Both the inner and outer journey become a longing to seek and know the Christ we are called to serve.”   
Nina Laubach
Student, MDiv program at Princeton Theological Seminary

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