Dec 5, 2009

QUOTE OF THE DAY from Colleen Kochivar-Baker

Gays have a great deal to offer the Church precisely because we have a motivation for seeking the commonalities between ourselves and others. Some of us also seem to have a need to treasure the differences and avoid being subsumed by a particular cultural millieu. It's truly a gift.

A very moving statement, especially in these times when so many in official positions in the church seek to build up walls separating us from one another, while at the time enforcing and imposing a totalizing ideological system upon the remaining loyal faithful. These are hard times for all gay and lesbian persons connected to the Church, and personally I am in deep mourning for the profound moral failure of the institution that birthed my own spiritual awakening. Without the Church I would not have met the mystical Christ, and now, ironically,  because of the Church's failure to mirror the mystical Christ,  I feel more closely united to the Crucified Christ on the hill of the skull, Gulgalta,  outside the city gates, - exiled, separated, ignored, despised, yet more fully alive in the Spirit than I could ever be inside the Church door. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for this great gift, may all of us gay and lesbian persons be worthy of it and may we have the strength to honor it by standing up for truth and justice in the face of such grave moral evil now being perpetuated by the new crucifiers of Christ in purple and scarlet. Christ Jesus has called us into exile to unite with him on Gulgalta, but the dawn of a new day is upon us. And may that glorious day arrive soon when He will come again and the dead will rise and the blind will see and the oppressed will weep no more. Marana tha, Come Lord Jesus, Come.

In practical terms, what are we then to do? Colleen has made another significant statement at William Lindsey's great blog, Bilgrimage,  to this effect which I feel capsulizes the situation very succinctly.

I believe the response for us at this present time is to let those individuals and institutions wall themselves off while the rest of us move into the future. If this means uniting to create a new form for Catholicism then that's what we do. In the meantime we have to fight the politics tooth and nail because if we don't we betray our own spiritual beliefs and our own relationship with Jesus.

Let those who need the walls remain shut up within them. Those of us who value life must follow the Spirit since the Spirit favors the living, not the dead. It is time to free the Eucharist and the priesthood from ecclesiastical control so the community called church can be reborn from the Great Dark in the power and breath of the Spirit. These are days of suffering, but they are also days of great joy as we witness the birthing of a new day.
(To be continued)


colkoch said...

Jayden, thanks for the compliments. They are appreciated. I found myself connecting very strongly with this thought of yours:

"now, ironically, because of the Church's failure to mirror the mystical Christ, I feel more closely united to the Crucified Christ on the hill of the skull, Gulgalta, outside the city gates, - exiled, separated, ignored, despised, yet more fully alive in the Spirit than I could ever be inside the Church door."

The trick for me has been not to throw the baby out with the bath water. The majority of the Church is trying to mirror the mystical face of Christ. It's the Intstitutional Hierarcy that can't do this and for a very practical reason. The mystical face of Christ in no way supports clericalism. That face mirrors our connenctions with each other, our equality with Jesus as brothers and sisters, our need to understand and take care of each other as one big family. That face mirrors the love of His mother Mary for all of her children.

Think about this. Jesus spoke of us as his brothers and sisters who shared the same Abba. He didn't see himself as a parental figure. The only real parental figure the New Testament speaks of around Jesus is His mother. He makes a point from the cross to see that she is taken care of after His death, but her role of mother is still emphasised. "Woman behold your son, son behold your mother."

Lately I've been thinking that the Church was first and foremost a result of the decision of Mary to incarnate Jesus. In His humanity, bit also in His incarnate divinity He was her son. He modeled His idea of priesthood on his understanding of motherhood--the servant to the family.

I suspect the reason there are so many Marian apparitions is because Mary is still the driving force behind Catholic spirituality. She is still the mother on whose idea of service Jesus imagined His priesthood.

In other words Jesus envisioned a human priesthood as in 'persona maria'.

Jayden Cameron said...

Wonderful linkage of the Church with the Marian connection, Colleen - the mother on whose idea of service Jesus imaged his priesthood! Why is it so shocking to see that expressed so succinctly - because it's so 'right,' yet so obscured by centuries of patriarchy. Carl Jung made the comment some years ago that the image of the Black Madonna is the last living symbol within Christianity. And the Marian apparitions seem like that 'last' expression of popular mysticism we are left with, only they as well have been marginalized. Marginalized yet not rendered ineffective, their power still flows through the body of the Catholic communion, as the servant face of the Divine Feminine.