RCWP Liturgies Homilies and Reflections
Are you called to be a priest?

  November 1, 2022       About Us | Search | Internal and Related Links | Events | Contact Us | Donate | Free Subscription

Martha Sherman ordained bishop for RCWP-USA Mid-West Region

Ordination homily by Nancy Meyer, Presiding Bishop

This is holy and powerful space after that proclamation of the Word.   What did we just hear?  First, that memorable story told by Jesus with the weaving of exquisite poetry by Michael Coffey. They conveyed to us stories that we so desperately need to hear today. 

It all began with a simple question asked by the young Jewish lawyer to Jesus.  “Who is my neighbor?”  I suspect it came out of his community posing the same query.  Who is the neighbor?  How wide of a circle do I need to love? What does my circle look like?  How inclusive of “the other” is my neighbor circle? 

What does it mean “to neighbor”?  Can we use neighboring as a verb rather than a noun?  Clarification of this word is demanded by the lawyer.   Jesus, the master storyteller goes to work.
A person finds herself in the ditch having just been beaten and robbed.  She is blooded, wounded and unable to even get up or even think of what to do next.  Her pockets are empty and her very being is crushed under the weight of what just happened.  Being on the side of the road battered and desperate, she is without any resources.  We have seen and experienced our beloveds in exactly the same way in 2022. 

Do we have the wine and the oil in our very being to be a compassionate, healing and loving presence for this person? Can I figure out what it is I have within me to be that word of hope that begins the healing?   Will I pull out from my storehouse, my inner being, what is called for now…now in this very moment to minister in this terrifying situation?

The passage from Romans this afternoon reminded us that we all have gifts and they ‘differ according to the grace given us.’  Our gifts being wide and varied, opens opportunities to sprinkle the goodness to so many.  We may be feeling useless and depressed and without any gifts to offer others when an opportunity presence itself: a woman, beaten and robbed by the side of the road.  What a blessed gift to be able to attend and share my hope, attention, and care with another who finds herself in a very trying situation. We are both gifted with the opportunity to be there for one another. The other may not know the healing that is given to me just by her presence of allowing me to tend and minister to her.  

Teresa of Avila a 15th century Carmelite mystic writes:
‘Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world”.  Her words are as true now as then. 

Like Jesus, Christian life requires an incarnational commitment to living on the edge, claiming our giftedness and using them.  In this time, when so much seems divided and when we often sit on the edge of planetary destruction it is important to remember the words from the prophet Jeremiah.  God’s plans for us are “peace, not destruction”.  God does envision a future “full of hope for us”.   The Holy One’s assurance is to be with us and is loving us into the future. We can stake our life on this promise!

These are such important words for all of us today and for you, dear Martha, as you received the gift that God has for you to be used for the good of the

people of God. The Midwest Region of RCWP has chosen you to serve as bishop and we are very honored that you will minister to us in this capacity. Your giftedness has been shared over the years in several positions and roles.  We have all witnessed the servant leader you have been for the Midwest Region, RCWP-USA and for the wider Church.  You have given of yourself to serve the people with your varied and wide range of giftedness. Be that fixing electricity, plumbing, drywalling, cutting down trees, taking flawless notes at meetings, or baking bread, canning pickles, organizing us, presiding at Eucharist, preaching, and most especially being a loving wife, sister and auntie, as well as so much fun to be with.  These are just a few of your many talents and gifts!  You have showered your loving care to so many of us as we find ourselves on the side of the road needing a word of hope. 

Martha will be ordained bishop today in the Roman Catholic Womenpriests movement.  It is a prophetic organization within an international progressive movement in the Roman Catholic church.  We received our call to priesthood in prophetic obedience to the Spirit who calls us all to serve as servant leaders.  As a movement, we are now 20 years old and have continue to grow and expand. 

As a bishop, Martha will provide prophetic, spiritual, sacramental, and liturgical leadership, as well as affirming pastoral care, empowering the members of the Midwest region and their communities.  Our bishops do not take on any administrative duties which is in contrast to the institutional Catholic Church.  Ours is purely pastoral care and leadership.

Our readings reflect the deep spirituality and vision of Martha.  If life finds you on the side of the road with empty pockets having been battered and discouraged, Martha will be there with wine and oil to clean your wounds and begin the healing.  Neighboring is a verb that denotes action and a loving conscious presence bringing the Cosmic Christ to the situation to clean and heal.  Martha will be Christ’s presence, hands and feet of a servant leader.  

RCWP Canada Bishop's Message

The Sacred Three Days of Autumn

In recent reading from the work of Wisdom teacher, Cynthia Bourgeault, I came upon the concept of the Fall Triduum as applied to the observances of Halloween (Oct. 31), All Saints (Nov.1) and All Souls (Nov.2).  It was juxtaposed with the Spring Triduum of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter Vigil.  Both Spring and Fall Triduums deal with the passage from death to life which is at the heart of the mystical path. 

The solemn passage through the Easter Triduum is experienced not only as a set of external observances, but as a journey deep within the interiority of our own hearts, a bit of our own dying with Jesus and rising with the Christ.  The days of the Fall Triduum comprise their own sacred passage, which is not only authentic in and of itself, but also a powerful mirror-image of the energy flowing through the Spring Triduum.  With death around us in all of nature, we are reminded of our own mortality. We hold in grief and sorrow what we have loved but deemed lost: our loved ones, our dreams, the roads in life not taken, etc. There is little to catapult us over death into resurrection.  
The Easter Triduum occurs when days are lengthening and energy is coursing through everything ready to burst forth in new life.  The Fall Triduum is the opposite.  Days are shortening and the earth draws into itself.  We linger in the dark, allow the dawning recognition of how fragile we are. 

Halloween asks us to acknowledge the false self (the disguises we wear) and experience the reality that all this is superficial.  Indeed, “all will be well”, as St. Julian of Norwich reminds us.  After that we get a glimpse of  the Divine promise of the future: all the friends of God and prophets gathered at the banquet feast of heaven. (All Saints).  From there we touch back to our human condition and acknowledge and grieve all that we have lost, most notably our most precious relationships (All Souls). 

As Autumn fades and we begin to anticipate the Winter Solstice, not only the return of the sun, but the birth of the Son, “these fall Triduum days are an invitation to do the profound inner work: to face our shadows and deep fears (death being for most people the scariest of all), to taste that in ourselves which already lies beyond death, drink at its fountain, then to move back into our lives again, both humbled and steadied in that which lies beyond both light and dark, beyond both life and death. What better tilling of the inner soil for the mystery of the Incarnation, which lies just ahead?”   — Cynthia Bourgeault

I am grateful to Cynthia for these insights and for the opportunity to share them with you.  May these days hold rich blessings for each of you,


[Jane Kryzanowski, Regina, SK is bishop for RCWP Canada]

Comments to the Editor

You sure have a jam packed Review this half month.  Thanks for all the information. I have only begun to explore it. 

[David Jackson, Edinburg, TX]

Indigenous Relations

Indigenous Relations NEWSLETTER

For more info

For more information about the #94in94 campaign, Click Here
To learn more about the Calls to Action, Click Here
To learn how to make a ReconciliAction plan, Click Here
To learn more on where each Call to Action is at, Click Here
To read the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's full report, Click here


Book Review: First Nations Version: An Indigenous Translation of the New Testament

Jane Kryzanowski, Special to The Review | November 1, 2022

For the past six months I have been using First Nations Version: An Indigenous Translation of the New Testament, as an integral part of my preparation for preaching the Sacred Word.
As explained in the Introduction, the “First Nations Version New Testament was birthed out of a desire to provide an English bible that connects, in a culturally relevant way, to the traditional heart languages of First Nations people…of North America.” 

It is the work of the First Nations Version Translation Council under the inspired leadership of Terry M. Wildman. Twelve First Nations individuals with diverse tribal heritage from across Turtle Island collaborated on the translation which was extensively peer reviewed by a much larger circle of diverse communities. Rain Ministries (USA), OneBook (Canada), and Wycliffe Associates of Orlando partnered to make this a reality.

Following the traditions of storytellers of Indigenous oral cultures, the thought-for-thought translation (dynamic equivalent) is rendered in simple yet beautiful and rich cultural idioms that resonate in the heart.  The cadence and feel one gets from oral reading brings images to life. The image of dancing one’s prayers before Creator conjures up visualization of the ceremonial drumming and dancing used at sacred ceremonies or pow-wows I’ve attended.

The Native naming tradition using the meaning of names for persons and places is used in the text: “Creator Sets Free”(Jesus), “Much Loved One” (David), “Bitter Tears” (Mary) are a few examples. The writing team explains the use of maintaining male terminology in referring to Creator or Great Spirit as being cultural metaphors in keeping with traditional practice of Indigenous people in speaking of the Supreme Being.  This is challenging for me as I think it is important to use gender inclusive/neutral language in naming the Divine and humans.

Experiencing this text for a few months, I find that, with a few adaptations, this translation of the scriptures for proclaiming the Good News resonates in the hearts of my community.  It isn’t hard to imagine Jesus, speaking in his native Aramaic tongue when colourful words such as “fry-bread”  are used to amplify the word “loaves” in the story of feeding thousands or the Last Supper.

Rain Ministries, Inc., First Nations Version: An Indigenous Translation of the New Testament (Downers Grove, IL, Intervarsity Press, 2021).


The Review pages list individual events on the following topics:

Church Renewal
Ecumenism and Interfaith
Indigenous Relations
Social Justice
Women's Flourishing

[Updates to the above pages are made periodically between issues of The Review.]



Continental stage synod document mentions women's ordination, LGBTQ relationships

Christopher White, ncronline.org | October 27, 2022

The newly released Vatican document for the next phase of Pope Francis' ongoing consultation process for the world's Catholics reckons with a number of topics once considered taboo in the Catholic Church, including women's ordination, LGBTQ relationships, children of priests, sexism and clergy sexual abuse.

The 45-page document, titled 'Enlarge the space of your tent,' released on October 27th, distills a number of the major themes from listening sessions held with millions of Catholics across the globe over the last year. While the document is careful to note that it is not magisterial church teaching, it is arguably the most comprehensive and candid expression of the Catholic Church's relationship with the modern world yet released by a Vatican office. 

Read More

Synod Reports from across Canada and around the world

Pope announces that synod on ‘synodality’ will be extended to 2024

Elise Ann Allen, cruxnow.com | October 16, 2022
 Pope Francis Sunday announced that his ongoing Synod of Bishops on Synodality will be extended for an additional year to allow, as he put it, more time for discernment and a greater understanding of the concept as a key dimension of church life.

As things now stand, bishops and other participants will gather for an initial meeting of the synod Oct. 4-29, 2023, in Rome, to be followed by a year of reflection with another culminating meeting set for October 2024.

Read More

Embodying a Listening, Inclusive, Synodal Church: The Time is Now

Summary Report of the Catholic Network for Women’s Equality, Canada

In response to the invitation of the Synod on Synodality, members of the Catholic Network for Women’s Equality from across Canada met virtually in March 2022 to consider the questions posed by the Synod’s Preparatory Document. CNWE engaged in prayerful reflection and conversation and the following is a summary report of the communal discernment.

The Catholic Network for Women’s Equality (CNWE) is a Canadian grassroots movement founded in 1981. CNWE advocates for:
i) equality for women in an inclusive, accountable, and renewing Catholic church
ii) justice for women in the world
iii) and the care of all creation.

U.S. and Canadian bishops to hold ‘virtual’ continental synod assemblies

John Lavenburg, cruxnow.com | October 28, 2022
With the Vatican’s publication of the working document for the continental phase of the Synod on Synodality, the U.S. bishops’ conference has announced that it will join the Canadian bishops’ conference for 10 virtual continental assemblies in late 2022 through early 2023.

The USCCB synod coordinator has said the format will enhance the process. North America is the only continent that has announced a virtual approach to the continental phase ecclesial gatherings.

Read More

Comments to the Editor form

Remembering Ruth Kolpack

Women's Ordination Conference, October 25, 2022

We were saddened to learn of the recent passing of Ruth Kolpack, a tireless advocate for justice and a church worker who had the courage to bear witness to God's call in her life. She was dismissed from her parish job after a smear campaign painted her as a "dangerous threat to the faith" because of her M.Div thesis on inclusive language.

May we tell her story and continue to, in the words of her thesis, "free God language from the captivity of patriarchy."

Church Reform, Liturgy, Women

People's Catholic Seminary Forum: A Conversation with James Carroll --
A video presentation

QR codes

RCWP Canada

November 1st -- All Saints Day -- Unsung Saint

In Mexico, Day of the Dead is actually a celebration of life

María Teresa Hernández, cruxnow.com |Octobeer 30, 2022
During the Day of the Dead celebrations that take place in late October and early November in Mexico, the living remember and honor their dearly departed, but with celebration — not sorrow.

Read More

Reflections and Homilies on the Sunday Readings of the Roman Missal and the Revised Common Lectionary

Reflections on the Sunday Readings
      by Susan Roll

Reflections by David Jackson

God's Word, Many Voices
Catholic Women Preach
Ron Rolheiser
Richard Rohr Daily Meditations
The Sunday Website of Saint Louis University
Homilies by Donald Senior
Sunday Homilies for Progressives
Pope Francis' Homilies
Radical Discipleship
Lector's Notes
Working Preacher
Scripture for Life
Pencil Preaching

RCWP Liturgies

Search The Review or Archives
search engine by freefind

Search The Review or Archives with Google Search

RCWP Canada Links

About Us
Are you called to be a
Contact Us
Downloadable books and
     book-length articles
Francis Comic Strip Archive
Privacy Policy
Program Coordinator
RCWP Canada at Facebook
RCWP Canada at Twitter
RCWP Canada Liturgies
     on Zoom
RCWP Canada Members
RCWP Canada Youth
The Review

Related Links

Catechism of the Catholic Church
Catholic Network for Women's Equality
Catholic Women Preach
Catholic Womens Ordination (United Kingdom)
Code of Canon Law
Femmes et Ministères
Global Sisters Report
God's Word, Many Voices
Independent Media, Presence - 
     religious information
International Association of
Women Ministers (IAWM)
L’autre Parole
Média indépendant, Présence -
     information religieuse
Mother Pelican
National Catholic Reporter
Nothing Sacred
Salt + Light Television
The other Word
Vatican II Documents
Vatican II Voice of the Church
Voices of Faith
We Are Church International
We Are Church Ireland
Wijngaards Institute
Women and Ministries
Women's Ordination Conference
Women's Ordination Worldwide

The Review

RCWP Canada's online magazine provides a twice-monthly selection of original and linked articles on women in ministry, femininism, church renewal, the environment, and reconciliation with Indigenous people.
The Review

About Us

RCWP Canada's AboutUs and Archives pages contain information about us, and includes an archive of back issues of The Review.
About Us

RCWP Canada Youth

A page of music and articles of interest to those who are spiritual but not religious.
RCWP Canada Youth


Receive free alert messages every two weeks announcing a new issue of The Review. Send a request to: rcwpcanada@outlook.com


RCWP Canada has authorization from Canada Revenue Agency for charitable status and is able to offer income tax deductable receipts.
5 ways to donate

           Google Analytics for the previous issue of The Review (October 15 - October 31, 2022):


To send a Comment to the Editor, please use the email address:  rcwpcanada@outlook.com
or use the form.

Home ©2022 RCWP Canada