Advances in Sustainable Development
Directory of Sustainable Development Resources
Strategies for Solidarity and Sustainability
Best Practices for Solidarity and Sustainability
Fostering Gender Balance in Society
Fostering Gender Balance in Religion
Meditations on Man and Woman, Humanity and Nature
Incarnation, Redemption, and Integral Ecology
Luis T. Gutiérrez
The beautiful season of Advent, followed by the celebration of Christmas, is a good time to meditate on the connections between the incarnation, the redemption, and human ecology. In approximately 4 BCE, a baby was born in Bethlehem, born of a woman, born under the law in patriarchal Israel. Twenty centuries later, we need to rediscover the significance of that event in light of new realities: the planet being destroyed by the same patriarchal culture, albeit now exacerbated by the power of fossil fuels, population overshoot, and industrial waste.
"Amount to Anything" cartoon by
See also the Christmas card set in
Common Good Christians
In the social sphere, should the patriarchal addiction to money, pursuant to power and honors, still be the main driver of economic activity and political initiatives?
"In the Christian understanding of the world, the destiny of all creation is bound up with the mystery of Christ, present from the beginning: “All things have been created though him and for him” (Col 1:16). The prologue of the Gospel of John (1:1-18) reveals Christ’s creative work as the Divine Word (Logos). But then, unexpectedly, the prologue goes on to say that this same Word “became flesh” (Jn 1:14). One Person of the Trinity entered into the created cosmos, throwing in his lot with it, even to the cross. From the beginning of the world, but particularly through the incarnation, the mystery of Christ is at work in a hidden manner in the natural world as a whole, without thereby impinging on its autonomy." Laudato Si' #99
In the religious sphere, should the patriarchal priesthood of the Old Law, restricted to males, still be normative for the sacramental priesthood of the New Law?
All men and women share one and the same human nature, the same biblical flesh. For the redemption, and the sacramental economy, the masculinity of Jesus is as incidental as the color of his eyes. The sacramental priesthood of the New Law is ministerial, not patriarchal. The exclusively male priesthood conceals the divine feminine in the Incarnate Word. The presence of Mary in the Christian community is not a sacramentally suitable substitute for the presence of Christ in the priest when acting in persona Christi. For this reason, women should be ordained to the priesthood and the episcopate, for the glory of God and the good of souls.
It is dark now in our common home, but Christmas keeps happening, a turning point that keeps turning. Humanity keeps muddling through, and patriarchal resistance to change will morph into new initiatives of communion between men and women of good will.
"Mary, Mother of the Eucharist and Predecessor of the Apostles, pray for us."