In a reading list recommended by Ron Rolheiser this one came up : The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman’s Journey from the Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine, by Sue Monk Kidd.
He describes the book as" a very, very challenging account of why a woman of deep faith and Christian commitment, and a gifted writer, has left the church. "
I haven't read the book but on her website there is an interview where she talks about a speaking engagement she had on the book’s topic where her remarks were received with some outrage. Most of the audience were Protestants, about half were men. It was held at a meeting centre run by Catholic nuns, though they were not sponsoring the conference.
"A lot of controversy got stirred up. One afternoon while seeking refuge in the library, I was summoned to the office of one of the sisters and found myself standing before an elderly nun in full habit. She had her arms crossed over her chest. She did not look happy. She said, “I understand you’ve been speaking about the Divine Feminine.”
I said, “Yes, ma’am.” Then she said, “And I also understand you’ve kicked up quite a hornets’ nest.” I nodded.
“Well,” she said, “I just wanted to tell you that it’s high time people realized that God is more than two men and a bird.”
Then she gave me the most wonderful, subversive smile and sent me back into the fray."
I’ve never forgotten her. So yes, there were pockets of antagonism along the way, but I have to tell you—there was also, from the very beginning, an audience who passionately embraced the book. What amazed me wasn’t so much the volume of the people who read it, as the passion with which readers responded to it. For every opposing reaction I got, there were a hundred reactions like that of the elderly nun. "
I say Amen to that but I won't be leaving the church.
However , I agree with Ron Roheiser it is challenging and it leaves me feeling that there is something very limiting about our way of seeing and talking about God in my church.