January 26, 2011
This piece is contributed by Father Adam Voisin.
The Feminine Gift is blessed to have Father Voisin's pastoral insight and guidance as both spiritual director and friend. He writes from Rome, where he is studying Canon Law and enjoying the music of accordian players outside his window.

Have you had a chance to treat yourselves to Pope Benedict's letter, Verbum Domini? It is quite magnificent.

Paragraph 94 begins with a section titled, "All the baptized are responsible for this proclamation [of the Gospel]." He emphasizes how this task falls to ALL the baptized faithful. The Holy Father goes on to outline how bishops and priests proclaim the Gospel, and then consecrated religious, and finally, the laity. He writes:

"The laity are called to exercise their own prophetic role, which derives directly from Baptism, and to bear witness to the Gospel in daily life, wherever they find themselves. In this regard the Synod Fathers expressed the greatest esteem, gratitude and encouragement for the service to evangelization which so many of the lay faithful, women in particular, provide with generosity and commitment in their communities throughout the world, following the example of Mary Magdalene, the first witness of the joy of Easter [...]"

Did you notice in the thanks of the Synod Fathers, the particular gratitude to women? It is worth meditating on that. Why do women deserve a special shout-out? It seems to me that women evangelize in a particularly distinct way. For one, I am sure the majority of believers would attribute their faith to the witness of their mothers and grandmothers. It also seems to me that the intimacy that women often have in their friendships lends itself to evangelization in a particular way, since evangelization often happens most effectively in relationships where there is love and trust. Also, in my (very short) experience as a spiritual director, I find that typically, women seem more able than men to achieve a greater spiritual depth. Men can too, but it just seems that women do it more naturally. Perhaps this translates to a greater spiritual effectiveness when it comes to sharing the Gospel with others.

I'm sure there are lots of other reasons too.

I am remembering your ministry in my prayers and at the Altar.

Fr. Adam


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