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Witnesses
Our Lady of the Lake
Seattle, WA
March 26, 2024

 

At Our Lady of the Lake Parish in Seattle, WA we were glad to uplift the voices of women in our parish and celebrate the feast day of St. Phoebe with masses on September 2nd and 3rd, 2023. In addition to the Masses, we had a coffee hour for women in the parish, and a parish listening session regarding the role of women in the Church. 

During mass, a female parishioner courageously broke open the Scriptures for us, our community presented three gifts to the icon of St. Phoebe in front of the altar. Three generations from one family (a grandmother, mother and a young daughter) individually brought forth a cross, a scroll and an angel statue while a lector read the intention and meaning behind each object. Our community, represented by three generations of women, demonstrated our commitment to the witness of St. Phoebe in a visible and concrete way.

Our all-female choir and musicians provided powerful and reflective music for the liturgy. The hymn “A Place at the Table”  (music by Lori True and text by Shirley Erena Murray) was sung during the presentation of the gifts, with the final verse sung by the youngest members of the choir. The young girls sang with so much pride; many in the congregation were brought to tears seeing the representatives of the future women of the Church singing with joy and strength.  

Our celebrant was uplifting throughout the celebration. At the end of the Mass, he shared the impact of the presence of women throughout the gospels, and examples of women’s influence in his own formation and ministry. We are deeply impacted by our experience of sharing the witness of St. Phoebe, and excited to continue to uplift the ministry of women in our own parish and in the Church broadly. We hope to continue to have women share reflections during Mass with our community and continue to build the energy created by our celebration together. 

Organization
“Our St. Phoebe Day celebration was a Catholic mass at its best—coming together, unified at the Eucharistic table, getting nourished through meaningful ritual, prayerful and relevant songs, a challenging message on synodality from scripture, and engaging and honest testimonies from two women in our community. St. Joan of Arc parish today did what Jesus did years ago—fed souls and gave people hope.”
St. Joan of Arc Catholic Community
Minneapolis, MN
Organization
“Together, we are grateful that the ministry and example of St. Phoebe enlivens our community to participate in exploring the unique gifts of women in our faith community. Here at Cranaleith, we feel strongly about creating space for all those seeking wholeness and transformation for themselves, their communities and society. This retreat was an opportunity for us to do just that.”
Cranaleith Spiritual Center
Philadelphia, PA
Organization
“The icon of St. Phoebe is still present in our Chapel today, where we are able to remember her witness and ask her to intercede on our behalf.”
Rosemont College
Rosemont, PA

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