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A Litany of Women for the Church

A Litany of Women for the Church

Dear God, creator of women in your own image,

born of a woman in the midst of a world half women,

carried by women to mission fields around the globe,

made known by women to all the children of the earth,

give to the women of our time

the strength to persevere,

the courage to speak out,

the faith to believe in you beyond

all systems and institutions

so that your face on earth may be seen in all its beauty,

so that men and women become whole,

so that the church may be converted to your will in everything and in all ways.


We call on the holy women

who went before us,

channels of Your Word

in testaments old and new,

to intercede for us

so that we might be given the grace

to become what they have been

for the honor and glory of God.


Saint Esther, who pleaded against power

for the liberation of the people,     –Pray for us.

Saint Judith, who routed the plans of men

and saved the community,

Saint Deborah, laywoman and judge, who led

the people of God,

Saint Elizabeth of Judea, who recognized the value of another woman,

Saint Mary Magdalene, minister of Jesus,

the first evangelist of the Christ,

Saint Scholastica, who taught her brother Benedict to honor the spirit above the system,

Saint Hildegard, who suffered interdict

for the doing of right,

Saint Joan of Arc, who put no law above the law of God,

Saint Clare of Assisi, who confronted the pope

with the image of woman as equal,

Saint Julian of Norwich, who proclaimed for all of us the motherhood of God,

Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, who knew the call

to priesthood in herself,

Saint Catherine of Siena, to whom the pope listened,

Saint Teresa of Avila, who brought women’s gifts to the reform of the church,

Saint Edith Stein, who brought fearlessness to faith,

Saint Elizabeth Seton, who broke down boundaries between lay women and religious

by wedding motherhood and religious life,

Saint Dorothy Day, who led the church

in a new sense of justice,


Mary, mother of Jesus,

who heard the call of God and answered,

Mary, mother of Jesus,

who drew strength from the woman Elizabeth,

Mary, mother of Jesus,

who underwent hardship bearing Christ,

Mary, mother of Jesus,

who ministered at Cana,

Mary, mother of Jesus,

inspirited at Pentecost,

Mary mother of Jesus,

who turned the Spirit of God

into the body and blood of Christ, pray for us. Amen.


— Joan Chittister, OSB

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Jena Thralls

Jena Thralls

Jena graduated from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College in 2012 with a degree in journalism. She worked for the Sisters of Providence as a Marketing Manager.

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