Welcome to Wading in the Waters of the Word™ with A Women’s Lectionary

Gentle Readers, Followers, Preachers, Pray-ers, Thinkers and Visitors, Welcome!

Welcome to this space where you can share your worship – liturgy and preaching – preparations – using  A Women’s Lectionary for the Whole Church. We begin in Advent 2021 with Year W, a single, standalone Lectionary volume that includes readings from all four Gospels. (We will continue with Year A in Advent 2022 to align with the broader Church.) In advance of each week, I will start the conversation and set the space for you all. I will come through time to time, but this is your space. Welcome!

Media Resources

A Women’s Lectionary For The Whole Church

Session 1, October 16, 2021
Rev. Wil Gafney, PhD at Myers Park Baptist Church

Plenary 1 | Translating Women Back Into Scripture for A #WomensLectionary
This session introduces participants to frequently unexamined aspects of biblical translation in commonly available bibles and the intentional choices made in “A Women’s Lectionary for the Whole Church.”

A Women’s Lectionary For The Whole Church

Session 2, October 16, 2021
Rev. Wil Gafney, PhD at Myers Park Baptist Church

Plenary 2 | Reading Women in Scripture for Preaching, Study, and Devotion
This session provides an overview of “A Women’s Lectionary for the Whole Church,” its genesis, production, and content. There is also an in-depth exploration of specific passages appointed for specific days including time for public and private reading and discussion.

Lectionary Lectio

Click the Comment links to add to the conversation

Christmas Day (and Eve)

A whole lot of Christmas going on! Three sets of readings for The Day (and non-liturgical eve).

Christmas I: A prophet combines the theme of pregnant expectation with the hope of resurrection, irresistible to Christian readers who cannot help but to read backwards with the evangelists through the prism of the life, death and, resurrection of Jesus. The psalmist celebrates the proclamation of good news on the lips of women. The author of the epistle stakes out a Christian theology of resurrection that would be distinct from the coincidental rabbinic theology of resurrection. The gospel tells the story of the miraculous birth of the child who is inexplicably related to all of this theologizing about life and death and life beyond death. It is good news. 

Christmas II: Here the prophet promises comfort, the comfort of a mother, remembering that the Hebrew Bible is the scriptures of a people perpetually under occupation. The psalm extols such a mother using feminine language for a God who transcends gender but is all too often represented as exclusively male. The epistle writer reflects on birth and rebirth in conversation with the prophets and, on a divine mother whose milk is her saving word. The story of the miraculous birth of the holy child is the same as for Christmas I. 

Christmas III: This first lesson is drawn from the Deuterocanonical writings where God the creator of all is entreated to send wisdom down from the heavens, remembering that Jesus will speak of himself as “the son of Wisdom.” The psalm celebrates the divine architect of creation. The epistle likewise has a cosmic scope; Jesus is the cosmic Christ, bearing the fullness of God in his person. In the same gospel lesson as for Christmas I and II, Mary the Theotokos, the God-Bearer, gives birth to this child who is all these things and more. 

Advent 4 Year W

In Advent we await the birth of a Savior, a Redeemer, who is but a babe. This week the Holy Child receives literary company in the little boy Samuel at his mother’s breast. These two women, Mary and Hannah, encounter God in extraordinary ways, unmediated by the men around them and as a result bear promised children. Blood and death, war, conquest and occupation will shadow the lives of both boys and only one will live to a ripe old age. Miraculous motherhood is always a challenging trope in the scriptures. Not all will mother. Not all will be mothered well. Broken hearts, empty arms and wombs endure. Yet the metaphor is not quite bankrupt. In the epistle we are reminded that though not all give birth all have been birthed and may be rebirthed through the Spirit and the waters of baptism. In the waters of baptism and on this side of the fount, God is with us. God is with us!