March 8, 2008
International Women's Day
She has been there, done that. The Christian woman has made her presence felt in every social environment. Drawing inspiration from the Bible where Mary, the Mother of Christ holds a prominent position, families continue to give women the respect that is due to them. More so in Mangalore, where Mother Mary is the role model in most families, women are considered on par with men.
The Bible places before us numerous women who led the ministry of Christ – prominent among them being Mary Magdalene. Many will be familiar with Mary the mother of Jesus, and Mary and Martha. But there are many others you may not remember, such as Tabitha and Priscilla. There is the female imagery used throughout the book of Revelations.
The Church plays a great role in affirming the status of women. There is no discrimination among men and women in the activities of the Church giving equal opportunities to women to practice their faith. Except for a few ceremonies, priests and nuns share equal status in the Church.
However, the history of the ordination of women has been controversial. The Roman Catholic Church has been facing pressure on the issue of ordination of women. Except this women enjoy equal rights and involve themselves in every activity of the church.
One can find many references of prominent women in the bible and it may also be noted that Christianity has a great number of women saints that just proves that even women who excelled spiritually have been revered. The lives of these have been exemplary.
The Christian woman is encouraged to study and lead an independent life. Various Christian missionaries have focused on women’s education through way of educational institutions.
In Mangalore, for example, women are taking the lead role in many spheres. She is not confined to the four walls of the house but enjoys freedom in various forms such as choice of dress, education and career.
Christian women have proved their leadership abilities at work and at home. In many families, the husband works away from home and the woman has to run the entire household. She has to play the role of the mother and the father among various other roles. She is a key decision maker and the family regards her words. Her economic independence and confidence make her manage her finances as good as any man would do. Apart from being good homemakers they are excellent organizers as well.
Interestingly the harassment of women in Christianity is not a common sight. This can be attributed to the basis of respect to women, which directly blooms out of the Bible.
A notable element here is that the church structure has several branches like the ICYM, YCS, CLC and several other youth groups in which young girls are groomed into independent, creative, smart women to lead a families and contribute in the ministry of God.
The Catholic woman thus is found working hand-in-hand with education being her forte.
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