International Women’s Day

Its International Women’s Day today.

We had an interesting presentation on the Scottish Episcopal Church’s recent Gender Audit at Diocesan Synod on Saturday. Immediately after the presentation by Elaine Cameron, a bunch of men jumped up and started saying that they didn’t believe in positive discrimination.

They did sound rather threatened and terribly anxious.

I wonder why.

It has broken out online too, with Father Kenny saying this and Mother Ruth retorting thus.

I’m not joining this debate right now, but I might in the future. Instead, I think my contribution today is going to be to point people to an old sermon I preached about Saucy Salome. You can hear and read it here.

Saucy Salome

Here is a sermon that I preached recently which didn't make it online until now. (I've been catching up with posting sermons online. There is also one from Fr Ivan Draper here from last Sunday on the preaching page too).

Ah, here she comes. Salome shimmers into view. We get her saucy story, appropriately enough in the heat of summer.

Even by the Bible’s rather lurid standards, this one really does seem rather salacious.

I called her Salome just now though the Bible does not call her that. Some early texts use her mother’s name, Herodias and others don’t name her. The temptress that Mark writes about was known as Salome by non-biblical writers, such as the Jewish historical mythmaker, Josephus. Salome was the name he knew her by and we’ll stick with that this morning – it is the name she is known best by still.

I wonder what visual image you have of Salome. For she is widely known in western culture. Salome dancing was a common theme in Western art – for you could get away with all sorts of scandal for a willing male patron so long as it seemed that you were representing a story from the bible. [Read more…]