Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Grid Blog for International Women's Day

In the spring of 1999, I took part in a ceremony called Women of the 14th Moon in a church fellowship hall here in Seattle. I didn't know what to expect when I signed up, I only knew that some women were gathering. I thought maybe I'd see some magic performed.

Here's what happened. We were organized by age group and each woman told their story. "This is what it's like being a young woman...this is what it's like being a woman in middle years...this is what it's like being an elder." We had all day, so each person had time to speak. And time to listen. We sang together and celebrated each story.

And in my favorite moment of the day, after we asked the elder women to share the wisdom they had accumulated in their decades of living - and they did - the youngest women in the group wept and anointed their hands with sacred oil.

Then, the elder women stood spontaneously and, laughing, began to dance. The dance was their gift to the women to sat in a circle around them, clapping and singing and giving thanks for them. Thanks for speaking, we sang. Thanks for listening.

It WAS magic.

I've participated in or helped lead The 14th Moon almost every year since then, and every year it gains power. We've moved outside, but we still dance and cry and laugh. As women, it's imperative that we gather together from time to time in a place away to tell our stories, laugh and cry, challenge and affirm one another. Then we are strengthened to move back into the world and do the work that needs doing.

This year, the 14th Moon that I've been connected with will be on August 5th, 2006 on a beautiful farm on Whidby Island, an hour outside of Seattle. You can get in touch with me with questions or for information about how to register.

How are you smashing patriarchy? This post is in response to The Urban Abbess's call:

I live in a city where a mega church pastor repeatedly instructs his young congregation to see women as subservient to men...

I practice a religion where systemic dysfunction keeps many women from being who they were truly meant to be....

I dwell on a globe where women and girls are systematically raped and murdered in order to allow the violent and the powerful to be more violent and more powerful...

“If I had a hammer, I would smash patriarchy.” -- Maybe in my blog, I’ve found it.

What about you? Where do you live? What do you practice? Do you have a hammer?

March 8th is International Women’s Day. Let’s make it the day we raise our voices, the day we use our hammers to dismantle patriarchy and build something that looks more like kingdom. Furthermore, let’s do it with intelligence, wit, wisdom, and grace – but also without mincing words hiding our emotions, or sugar coating our realities.

Join us is in an intentionally mixed-gender gridblog conversation around patriarchy and how to eliminate it.

1) Post It! use your voice by posting on March 8th.
(If you are in Seattle I would encourage you to post about your experience as a woman in a city where voices like Mark Driscoll at the Mars Hill Church have so much influence -- especially over young women and men. Although, all justice realted topics around women and gender equity are welcome.)

2) Name It! For consistency, please title your post: Grid Blog for Int'l Women's Day: add your subtitle here

3) Illustrate It!: With the attached .gif from Sam Brown at

4) Register It!: By sending your link to Rachelle will consolidate all the links into one earth shattering list. Please send links by noon on the 8th.

5) Pass is on! Send this to a blogging pal or post the invite on your blog.

Thank you, in the words of the Indigo Girls, for getting out of bed with your hammer and your nail.

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter."
-Martin Luther King Jr.

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