Leading Ladies

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Five women theologians talk about their spiritual foremothers in the latest issue of Boston College Magazine. Each selection highlights a woman in the Christian or Jewish tradition who, despite the historical or religious obstacles, expressed her spiritual insights through public speaking, teaching, or writing. 

Theology professor Lisa Sowle Cahill is the only one to invoke Mary Magdalene. “Magdalene was an apostle for the same reasons and in the same way that St. Paul was,” Cahill says. “Neither was one of the original twelve, but both saw the risen Jesus and were sent by him to announce the gospel.” She uses Magdalene’s role as an apostle to raise a question about contemporary Catholic hierarchy: “What possibilities might that leave us with, in regard to the status of women in the Church today?”

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