Friday, January 26, 2018


Women were very important in the early Christian Church.  They were preachers and administrators.  Prisca is one of them.  She was a tentmaker like her confrere Paul, of whom we know much from his letters in the Bible.  She was Jewish too.  Her home in Ephesus was where the community of Jewish and non-Jewish Christians met.  She had been expelled from Rome by the emperor, so she was more of a traveling evangelizer, who lived in various places.  So what happened?  Where did these kind of women go?  As time went on, Chrisitianity became more formal in its worship, with hierarchy that mimiced the Roman way of male rule.  Plus, the Jewish way of male cultic worship became the Christian model.  The idea that men should rule because Jesus only chose men, does not wash, since we have women like Prisca who came soon after Jesus turned the Good News over to his disciples.  Originally, Christianity had a radical message shared in a radical way.  Eventually, the method conformed to the comfort of culture.  Once the religion became established, I wonder that the message lost some of its radical power.  I think that Pope Francis I is trying to bring back the joy of this radical Good News that bounces up against established ways of living and seeing the world that benefits the few and the powerful.  

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