“We Will Sing and Not Be Silent”
“We Will Sing and Not Be Silent” a Conference on Women, Faith Traditions and Leadership by Janice Sevre-Duszynska, ARCWP
“We Will Sing and Not Be Silent” was the title of the event on Women, Faith Traditions, and Leadership” held on Saturday,March 1, 2014 in Salt Lake City Utah. The symposium was sponsored by the University of Utah College of Social Work under the auspices of Christina Gringeri who has interviewed Roman Catholic Women Priests as part of a research project on our movement. The College of Humanities and the following departmental programs and others also provided funding for the event: International Studies, Religious Studies, and Languages and Literature.
RCWP priest and longtime friend, Victoria Rue of Oakland, and I began the day leading a morning liturgy at Jane’s House, an elegant mansion in SLC. People of all faiths gathered with us to celebrate the first Eucharist in Salt Lake City led by Roman Catholic Women Priests. Along with us were feminist theologian Rosemary Radford Ruether and Roy Bourgeois who were housed with Victoria and me in Jane’s house as they were also invited to speak.
That afternoon we gathered at the Main Library Auditorium, which was part of an eclectic glass structure filled with activities, shops and stores. The event, which was free and open to the public, was well attended.
Keynote speaker, Rosemary Radford Ruether, began with her presentation entitled “Women’s History: the Struggle Against Exclusion.” Margaret Toscano, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Languages and Literature at UU moderated the multi-faith panel discussion focused on “Gender Equality and Faith Traditions: Issues of Justice.” Panelists were Chelsea Shields Strayer, Ph.D. Candidate, Boston University who is a leader in the Mormon Ordain Women movement; Maeera Shreiber, Ph.D., Associate Professor of English and Chair of UU Jewish Studies Initiative; Maysa Kergaye, Coordinator of the Islamic Speakers Bureau;and Victoria Rue, M.Div., Ph.D., Roman Catholic Womenpriests. A screening of “Pink Smoke Over the Vatican” followed. Fr. Roy Bourgeois and I answered questions from participants.
Our sharing of women’s struggle for justice in our faith traditions offered insight and inspiration for all gathered, young and old.
Because of the storms my flight was delayed until Tuesday morning.
On Sunday I was invited to visit the Mormon Temple with Tara Romney Barber, Christina’s research assistant, and walk thru Canyon Creek with Christina. On Monday we drove through the mountains and visited the Cathedral of the Madeleine, the only cathedral in the U.S. dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene. What an exquisite structure! Neo-Romanesque on the outside, it reminded me of churches I’ve visited in the U.S. and Europe. The inside was glorious especially the background painting behind the altar and the mural of Mary Magdalene at the tomb. The Stations of the Cross are extraordinary and not to be missed. They were painted in 1992- 3 by Sam Wilson, who was inspired by European painters, especially the Italian. Besides evoking the passion of the cross, each station presents animal, plant and religious symbols that provoke thought and make the experience even richer. For me the cathedral evoked native -American colors like one finds in maize, the multicolored corn used for Autumn decorations, full of the Earth’s glory and delight.
My photos are below but check out the following link compiled by the painter himself.
How wonderful to extend the issue to a multifaith level once again, and glean the insights from a variety of experience.