Monday, September 21, 2015

Women,Church and Jesus

A religious sister writing in the diocesan bulletin recalls the great strides Korea has made in the last 50 years, and  the growth of the Church in Korea with over 10 percent of the population Catholic. This reality is envied by the  Church of the West for the dynamism and progressiveness of the Korean church--the number of women, according to recent statistics, numbers 58.2 percent within the Church.

However, with the economic growth of the country after 1990, interest in religion and the zeal of the Christians has decreased. With the economic improvements, the democratization of the country  and the entrance of women into the work force we are experiencing  the problems the Church in the West experienced after the Second Vatican Council.

The church is concerned with the poor, the weak, the abuses of nature and the oppression under patriarchal thinking that women have endured. We need to return to the original beginnings of creation when all was in the correct order. For the Church to respond to this call we have to change the structures of injustices, and distance ourselves from them with counter proposals.

" Each one of you is a son of God because of your faith in Christ Jesus. All of you who have been baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with him.  There does not exist among you Jew or Greek, slave or freeman, male or female. All are one in Christ Jesus" (Gal.3: 26-28).

Equality was a hallmark of the first communities, all worked for the building up of God's kingdom according to their ability. We are all members of the body of Christ, this  is our mission  and we listen to  Jesus on how to do it.

There are many in the Church, especially women who see the discrimination within the Church and are dissatisfied  but they don't want to speak about it for fear they will be a headache to others. This fear of bringing up the subject is one of the customs we face. The reason we don't see any change is that we are afraid of conflict, but without it how can we  change?

Women have  to get involved. In decision making in  parishes and meetings, women's voices need to be heard. In parish events we can have the women and the men take turns preparing. We have to start in small things in breaking down the stereotyped thinking that we have. This will make for a more vibrant and active community.

The society in which we live has many problems. We  are  God's children; men and women need to pool  resources, share and cooperate  to make one living community. Together as equals we can do much to heal the problems we have in creation. This common vision of equality, sister concludes, is necessary for  a correct order in all of creation.

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