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March 11, 1994     The Message
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March 11, 1994

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0 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana -- Lenten series-- Following is the fourth of six ar- ticles taken from Father John Buckel&apos;s book, "Free to Love: Paul's Defense of Christian Liberty in Gala- tians," distributed by W.B. Erdmans, Grand Rapids. Father Buckel teaches New Testament Studies at St. Mcinrad School of Theology. St. Paul the apostle proclaims in the Letter to the Galatians that there is to be no distinction in the Christian community between Jew and Gentile, slave and free, male and female (Gal 3:28). Of these three categories, the one involving gender is still a topic of discussion for twentieth century Christians. Paul's claim regarding the equality of men and women is striking indeed. Nevertheless, one sometimes wonders if the apostle always re- mained faithful to his teaching concerning the rad- ical equality of Christian believers. In 1 Corinthi- ans 14:34-35, for example, Paul seems to infer that women ha,<e an inferior status in the Christian community. He very matter-of-factly states that "the head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband" (1 Cor 11:3). With this in mind, the apostle believes that "any man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishon- ors his head, but any woman who prays or prophe- Neither male or female By FATHER JOHN BUCKEL St. Meinrad Seminary sies with her head unveiled dis- honors her head" (1 Cur 11:4-5). Therefore, Paul is convinced that a woman "ought to have a veil on her head" while praying. More- over, he contends in 1 Corinthi- ans 14:34-35 that "women should keep silent in the churches.., for it is shameful for a woman to speak in the church." These negative comments notwithstanding, women played an active role in the apostle's evangelical ministry. Some of Paul's first Christian converts were women. The author of Acts informs us that a woman named Lydia was the first, along with the members of her household, to respond to the apostle's proclamation of the gospel in Philippi (Acts 16:14-15). There were also a num- ber of people in Thessalonica who responded favor- ably to Paul's heralding of the good news, includ- ing many of the leading women (Acts 17:4). The apostle is not afraid to refer to female Christians as his co-workers. Paul takes note of the fact that he worked side by side with women in the midst of his missionary activity (Phil 4:2-3). This is also attested to in Romans 16 where the apostle sends his greeting to a number of Chris- tians, 10 of whom are women. First of all, he corn- mends his sister in Christ, Phoebe, a deaCOn' apostle does not call her a deaconess) at Cenchreae. Paul describes her many, and of myself as well" (Rum 16:2). refers to Prisca and her husband Aquila as Y .... 1 low workers m Chmst Jesus (Rum "all the Chmstlan conduct was well known m churches of the Gentiles" (Ram 16:4). The is especially grateful to Prisca and risking their lives on Paul's Then, using language that might surprise modern day Christians, Paul refers to the Junia as an apostle, as well as a t (Ram 16:7). Was Paul's behavior always his teaching of the equality of male which he professed in Gal 3:28? male-dominated world in which the it is more surprising that he had any sort rive outlook on women in regard to istry than that he should at times seemingly derogatory remarks believers. Like us, Paul had to sion between his own cultural radical newness of the gospel. important question that we should ask, : or not our behavior conforms of Jesus Christ and its emphasis on the of believers. DON'T WAIT UNTIL YOU'VE REACHED YOUR LIMIT. If you're feeling as though you simply cannot cope with one more demand, give us a call. We offer free, confidential personal assessments 24 hours a day, sven days a week to help you get past it. THE HELP LINE 634-NEED (634-6333) Toll Free 1-800-852-7279 A service of the BEHAVIORAL HEALTH CENTER MEMORUC.HosPr And Health Car,: Center 800 Tacit 9th Street .J,t'r, Indiana 812taSi.lY.4. Ed. L. 101 North Met Washington, FOR ELECTRI( FISCHER scHNE Main Ph 217E. Golden Jubilarians Ralph and Mary (Rapp) Guetling of Evansville will cele- brate their fiftieth wedding anniversary with a Mass of Thanksgiving at 5 p.m. March 26 at Sacred Heart Church, Evansville. A family dinner will follow at 7 p.m. at Bockel- man's Restaurant. An open house will be held from 2-4 p.m. March 27, at the Hilltop Grove. The couple was mar- ried March 22, 1944 at St. Boniface Church. They are the parents of four children: Kimberly Tieken, Charles Guetling, Carolyn Messmer and Pamela Wannemuehler, all of Evansville. They have 10 grandchildren. Mr. G,letling retired from Bucyrus Erie Company after 42 years and he retired from Holiday Health Care after 10 years. I00'LOW We've e  I IIII BECHER & KLUESNER FUNERAL HOM E DOwntoWn Chapel, 214 E. 7th North Chapel, 33r.d Newton KREMPP (LUMBER CO. .... WO['ESALE BUILDING MATERIAL DIS- TRIBUTION & GENERAL CONTRACTING VAR5 CONSTRUCTION 452:l"961 482-693g /r "JASPER LUMBER CO."' COMPLETE BUILDING = SER/ICE Ph: 482,.H2- .. . P,.T 4,-JASPF.4 , 00our ta thanks ta 9 / 7Jr last will an) textamcnt can an eloe.nt statement 9Cwhat y t apprecthtcd most in [/our lt'jf beeriest to help educa prt?s5 5amt;.etnrad 5emmarq /5 a Cove to thank 9o? faryaur F'th afi $ pass #on to those whaJal/av yvmff i,i For information, write: Director of Planned Giving, Saint Seminary, Saint Meinrad, IN 47577 or call collect (812)