Daily Office Readings for Monday of Proper 18: Year 1
“There were also women looking on from a distance; among them were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome. These used to follow him and provided for him when he was in Galilee; and there were many other women who had come up with him to Jerusalem:” (Mark 15: 40 and 41).
This passage reminds me of the Sunday Holy Eucharist of a week ago, when our COVID ravaged service count was down to 22. There were 19 women and 3 men. The men were all a part of the worship support, the priest (myself), the Eucharistic minister and the acolyte. The ushers (who took the count), and all in the pews were women. I’m guessing if the men had not been assigned a duty, they would not have been present. Where are the men of persistent faith?
Women have always supported the Church and by extension, Jesus himself. There are some denominations that believe that women should not be in Church leadership. To this I say, Balderdash! Our Lord Jesus did all he could to make us remember that women are as equally important in the message of the Gospel as are men.
The two greatest Christian sermons are given by women. Mary his mother says to the servants of Jesus (that’s you and me), “Do whatever he tells you:” (John 2:5). And Mary Magdalene is commissioned to proclaim Christ is Risen! And that she has seen the Lord! (John 20:17 and 18).
Since the time our Lord Jesus walked among us, even when he was dragged to the cross, women, faithful women were with him. Women are still holding our Church together. Just as I ponder why women have such strong faith, I also ponder why so many men do not. Perhaps faith is closely associated with the capacity to nurture as does a mother to her child. I don’t know but I do believe that love is the most important ingredient in faith. Thank You Lord Jesus.
As we listen to what the Spirit is saying to us, let us live to love, to serve, and to teach, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John