Calling Her by Name
by Louise Davis, M.Div.
“I celebrate with M.T. Winter when she prays, ‘Our Mother who is with us, we celebrate your many names.’ I know , in my head, that God is actually neither male nor female —both Father and Mother,” Louise Davis told readers of CFT in describing the background of her poem, “Yet in my heart and soul I relate to Herself..”
I just sat through a traditional Christian
Lord, give us strength,
Our Father who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name,
We sang hymns to him.
Communion was consecrated around
only Son of the Father.
Last summer I attended a Catholic
in Mexico with my son-in-law’s parents.
Since I don’t speak Spanish,
it was fascinating.
I recognized the Lord’s Prayer because of the cadence
and it began with El Senor.
When we stood and sang Alleluia, I knew the Gospel would be read next.
I understood that Communion
would not include me.
I translated into my own language
and was able to authentically pray
When life is good and I am strong,
I am able to translate in a male-centered service.
Even though I feel excluded, as I did
during Catholic Communion,
I am able to authentically pray
But when I truly need God,
as I do now as Marge is dying of ALS,
I don’t have the energy to translate,
and I’m not included.
There is no authenticity when I pray;
I cannot worship.
The service leaves me
empty and aching.
In my time of need, She must be included.
Grandma God, Sophia, Holy Mother.
She has called me by name
having knit me together in
my mother’s womb.
When I call Her by name,
especially in community,
I find comfort, support, solace, strength,
I am held in Her loving arms.
In relationship, I pray
Louise Davis serves as a Midwest representative on the EEWC Council and is active in her Lutheran church in Evanston, Illinois. She is also the author of an essay titled, “Grandma, I’ll Go to Hell with You,” published in the Spring, 2005 issue of Christian Feminism Today (under its former name, EEWC Update).
© 2007 Evangelical & Ecumenical Women’s Caucus, volume 31, number 1, Spring (April-June) 2007