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Genevieve you are absolutely brilliant. Brilliant as in a shining light to all of us. Thank you and may God continue to bless you.


Hi, Genevieve

I share your outrage about the violations of women's human rights described in this article above.

I was wondering if you could clarify more your point about Christian women at the end:

"secondly, I find it shameful that Christian women consider even lightly the idea that dress codes and women staying in the home are part and parcel of our faith. Modesty, dignity and decency must be combined with the God-given gift of free will in order that each person find his or her vocation in the wide constellation of possibilities. "

Which Christian women are claiming that dress codes and "women staying in the home" are "part and parcel of our faith"?

I am aware of some Christian modesty groups that go beyond what I feel is necessary, and I also know that you are historically a supporter of women who choose to be at-home mothers, though I get that you do not see this as the only valid choice for women and mothers.

Is there a strain of Christian women proposing something stricter than just embracing the choice to be mothers at home - something more akin to a Muslim practice of confining women strictly to the inside of the house (literally, not figuratively, as Linda Hirschman would have it)?

I think I agree with your point, but something in your phrasing of it made me react slightly negatively and I'm not sure why.

Are you talking about mainstream Catholic women advocating for these things? Women on the fringes, or women in more of a cult-like approach to Christianity?



I am not sure that I understand the Lawyer's statement about German people expecting a certain traditional structure? Most german women work outside of the home at least a few hours a week. I feel lucky to be able to stay at home with our 4 children.
Maybe the misunderstanding is a language problem here.
Pope Benedict has just encouraged more assimilation possibilities for german muslims. The CDU gov't is taking it seriously.

Stephanie in Germany


I think it is a language issue. I don't think she means who works or doesn't, but "traditional" means that the German people aren't upset that the Muslim women stay at home. They don't realise that they are there because of coercion, and that it's not really the same as the "traditional choice" that families used to make.


Well, maybe some Germans do not realize there is coercion going on, and maybe some DO know, but adopt that, "Hey, it's their culture" attitude. I hear this sort of thing from Americans who give a yawn and shoulder shrug to thuggish behaviors exhibited by other Americans towards each other. "It's their culture" has been said about Italian mafias, Irish gangs, inner city black gangs and on and on. I don't accept that every Muslim family adopts sharia law any more than every Italian family adopts la costra nostra (or, whatever that mafia code is called). It seems to me, that it took the combined efforts of law enforcement and respective ethnic communities sick of the ne'erdowells within branding them all as thugs to break this.

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    • From Benedict XVI
      “People have realized that the complete removal of the feminine element from the Christian message is a shortcoming from an anthropological viewpoint. It is theologically and anthropologically important for woman to be at the center of Christianity."
    • Anger and Patrimony (from Donna)
      This is just another of the unintended consequences of the cultural acceptance of contraception and abortion! Men's sexuality has been robbed of its creative essence. It is now viewed as something that imposes a burden on women (when conception happens to occur), something used to control women or something that is purely recreational. Why would men bother?? In taking away their responsibility, we've also robbed them of their significance! In the big picture of humanity, men have been made into nothing more than a nuisance women have to figure out how to control in order to bring about the next generation. Men don't see it as their task to protect the vulnerable because they see themselves as the vulnerable ones. A few well preserved vials of sperm would make men entirely obsolete in the world's ethos today!!
    • Excellent, Dom! (from Teresa)
      That is astounding Robin, and good for you for standing up. At the heart of that matter, I think, is even worse than a gender mixing message. There is an increased sharper and sharper focus on the "self." Solid Catholic teaching returns our focus away from ourselves to Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The original sin, Eve denied her womanhood when she desired to be like "gods." Since the only god she knew was the Father. Where was Adam? He stood impotent... in other words, they were divorced. There's a young girl at Robin's son's high school who was just told that she is the center of the universe and it's a tragic disservice to her.
    • Find the logic (from "me")
      Ditto what Mary said! A lot of high schools have very poor math and science depts, for boys and girls. I also am educated as a chemical engineer, but chose to teach the two years before we had children because its hours were more suited to spending time with children. (I was looking ahead). When it came time and I was pregnant with our first, I realized that I did not want to leave him with someone else, and was able to stay home full time. I am not sure it would have been that easy if we were used to another engineering income and not just a private school teacher income. Also some of my first job offers were out on oil rigs - I had no interest in that at all even though I enjoyed my engineering classes and did well in them. No one discouraged me from an engineering job, on the contrary I got a lot of flack for my decision not to pursue an engineering career.
    • Find the logic (from Mary)
      I've been lurking, but this is one that irritates me. Beats the heck out of me what these "barriers" are. I was educated as a chemical engineer, where 1/3 of our class was women. However, in electrical engineering, only 1 or 2 out of 30 were women. Is it possible that women are Just Not Interested in some areas? Nah, it must be The Man keeping us down so we must legislate (and, I agree -- when they say "legistlate", I hear "quota"). And actually, I have a friend that was also a chemical engineer. When she lost her job, she decided not to go back into engineering and started working from home so she could spend more time with her 3 kids. Also, if nothing else, there are all kinds of incentives for women to enter science and engineering -- scholarships not available to men, guaranteed housing on campuses that do not guarantee housing to the general population, etc. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that schools in general are not preparing students for the hard sciences. It is truly a sad state of affairs, the lack of science education these days.

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