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Walk with Us, The Journey is Long: Women in the Church Today

December 2, 2023 @ 8:30 am - 12:00 pm

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Walk with Us, The Journey is Long:
Women in the Church Today

Saturday, December 2, 8:30-12:00pm
Teresa of Calcutta Hall, lower level
  • 8:30 – 9:00am – gather for hospitality
  • 9:00 – 10:00am – program including the Visitation Chamber Choir and Dr. Colleen Mary Carpenter
  • 10:00 – 11:00am – panel discussion by women of The Basilica
  • 11:00- 12:00pm – restorative circle discussions

Journeying toward healing through listening and truth telling. 

Women in the Church today are both greeted with powerful, transformative new opportunities and stymied by old limitations. It is often surprising—and heartbreaking—when we suddenly run into outdated stereotypes of women’s sinfulness or traditional rules and expectations that limit how we can participate publicly in the work of building God’s kingdom. How shall we think about the place of women in the Church today, in this time of change and challenge? Our baptism calls us to walk together on the road of discipleship, and in the paths of the prophets who have gone before us. With the prophets, let us journey through grief, and speak God’s word of hope and promise: the journey is long, but we walk hand in hand!



We are grateful to begin the program with a piece performed by the Visitation Chamber Choir.

The program has three movements:

  • Head: Dr. Colleen Mary Carpenter will provide a keynote talk about women in the Church today. She will lead us through a journey of embracing our baptismal call as prophets—welcoming and supporting one another’s grief as women of the Church and imagining together a new way to live.
  • Heart: Hear the honest and vulnerable stories of our sisters at The Basilica of Saint Mary. We will learn from them about their varied experiences and roles as women in the Church, as we receive and believe.
  • Action: Enter into a safe space of sharing in small groups, as we reflect on and process all we have heard through restorative circles. Our pastor, Fr. Daniel Griffith and his associate, Julie Craven, are internationally recognized experts on restorative justice. Just as The Basilica offered a session on truth-telling for racial justice, this session will use the same restorative justice protocols for this session on women in the Church. Trained listeners from our Emmaus ministry will lead the small group circles.

Several organizations that provide resources and support will be present during breakfast and breaks to share information and resources relevant to women in the Church today.

Men and Women are welcome to attend. As we move into Advent, we invite our community to engage in an important restorative experience of listening and healing. Together, we are invited to open our hearts and minds to receive and reflect on the realities of women in our parish community.


Speaker Bio:  Colleen Mary Carpenter has been both a Department Chair and Professor of Theology and Women’s Studies at St. Catherine University. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including the Monika Hellwig Award for Excellence in Teaching from the College Theology Society and the Denny Prize for Distinction in Writing. Currently she is the Benedict Distinguished Visiting Professor in Environmental Studies at Carleton College.

Mary Magdalene – Invitation to Love copyright 2011 Janet McKenzie www.janetmckenzie.com
36″ x 48″, oil on canvas
Private collection, on indefinite loan to North Church, Columbus, OH


The Basilica of Saint Mary
1600 Hennepin Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55403 United States

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Phone: 612.333.1381
Website: https://www.mary.org

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