Lent at Reunion: A Guided Fast

Lent at Reunion: A Guided Fast

Lent is a season of preparation.  It’s a season where we give up good things so we can focus on better things.  Each week, we want to invite you to fast from a different habit or thing we rely on regularly.  Every weekend, we will break our fast to rest and celebrate the goodness of God in this season.  THIS IS NOT A PROGRESSIVE FAST.  We will only fast from one thing each week.  The next week, we will move on and fast from a new thing.  

This is also an experiential fast.  When we fast, we don’t simply abstain from certain things and try to suffer through it, but we set our attention and give our time to other things, better things.  As we fast together as a community, we want to be intentional with our time and attention.  

We have created this GUIDE to help us accomplish this!  In this journal, you’ll find suggested actions you can take, everyday, to help us draw closer to God, to learn more about ourselves, and to love our neighbors.  There are also reflection questions to journal through after each day.  So download the guide, grab a notebook, and journal through your experience!

Before we begin our fast, there are a few things to keep in mind during the season of Lent:

Fasting is a shift in focus. Lent is not about suffering aimlessly. As you put down things, make sure to pick up habits that deepen your faith like prayer, bible study, and reflection.

Be Smart. Some fast items can be difficult/dangerous for small children, the elderly, or pregnant and nursing mothers. Make sure to fast in a way that preserves your health.

Follow Your Conscience. Some things we have chosen to give up as a community might not feel like much of a sacrifice or may be too burdensome for some reason. It is okay to add or take away as your conscience leads.

Nathan Caddell
Somerville Location Pastor

Prayer Basics: How to Pray With Someone

Prayer Basics: How to Pray With Someone

My dad was a minister, so growing up I experienced a behind the scenes look at almost every aspect of what it meant to pastor a church- except for praying with someone personally. It’s not as though my dad wasn’t praying with people. He certainly was. It’s just that I rarely saw my dad in those moments. They were, understandably, private in nature, so I didn’t have the same amount of exposure to those interactions. Consequently, when I went into ministry myself, I felt uncharacteristically out of my element when it came to praying with someone personally. Every other facet of doing ministry seemed like second nature to me. It was all very familiar. But not praying with someone. Those were uncharted waters. And that made me very uncomfortable. I felt unsure about what to say or how much to say and in truth I think I avoided those opportunities for quite some time. It’s not that people didn’t ask me to pray for them. They did. I simply said that I would be sure to do so and then moved the conversation along.  

Can you relate? Have you ever found yourself in conversation with someone who clearly needed prayer, only to let the moment pass instead of taking advantage of the opportunity? It’s so much easier to offer our ‘thoughts and prayers’ rather than taking that uncomfortable step of asking, ‘Would it be alright for me to pray with you right now?’
“What if they say, ‘Yes!’? What then?” These are the worries that flood our minds in those moments. We fear we’ll look foolish, or that we’ll say something wrong. 

Fortunately, there are no rules about how we are to go about praying for someone. The key is to remember that God is the one who brings about any change in a person’s life, not us, and He has assured us that His Spirit is at work in our hearts, even to the point of speaking words when our own fail us. There’s something significant that happens when we take hold of the moment and pray with someone- the grace of God has an open invitation to begin working in that person’s life and in ours as well. 

If you want to take advantage of opportunities to pray with someone, here are a few pointers that have been of help to me.

First- When you find yourself in conversation with someone who needs prayer, simply ask: Would it be alright for me to pray with you right now?  Once you’ve asked, listen for their reply. Sometimes a person might feel uncomfortable with you praying for them in that moment. If they say ‘no’ simply reply, ‘Ok. Well, please know I will be praying for you later.’ Then by all means remember to do so. 

Second- If they agree to let you pray for them don’t panic. This is a beautiful chance for God to work His grace through you and into this person’s life. If you are afraid, simply ask God silently for courage. 

Third- If this conversation is happening online or on the phone there’s no need to worry about what do with your hands or how close you should be as you pray. But if you are in person, it would be good to ask, “Can I put my hand on your shoulder?” And then comply as they wish.

Fourth- Begin to pray. If you lack words, try to remember this simple acrostic:P. R. A. Y.
P- Praise God(“Thank you God that You love us and hear our prayers. We praise you in all circumstances.”)
R- Remember the Need(“We pray for ______ and their broken foot.”)
A- Ask God to Intercede(“Lord help it heal quickly, help them as they manage their crutches and provide for their needs.”)
Y- Yield to His Way(“In all things, God, You are in control. We thank You for Your hand on this issue.”)
If we struggle for words in our prayer, just remember to P.R.A.Y.

Finally, it’s good to remember this is not our time to shine in trying to come up with eloquent prayers that shift attention back onto us instead of God. Ultimately He is the source of strength and healing. Let Him be God and just be yourself. I’m always amazed at the words I’m prompted to speak when guided by the Spirit of God, even if my prayer is only a few words long. In any case, it’s hard to go wrong when we keep our words short and simple.
I hope that these suggestions will be of help to you when the opportunity arises for you to pray with someone. It’s important to maintain a regular prayer life if we want to develop this skill. The more we pray, the more our confidence and competence grows. This also helps align our hearts with God so we are in tune with Him as we pray for someone.

Jeff Oaks 

Advent Devotional

Advent Devotional

Download the 2020 Advent Devotional here.

2020 is a year that we will never forget.  The pandemic has turned our world upside down — we have lost loves ones, lost jobs and businesses, and we have experienced loneliness that has been increasingly difficult to overcome.  The political polarization and brokenness doesn’t seem to be getting any better.  Almost everyone is thinking, “I can’t wait for 2020 to be over.”

The Advent season can’t come soon enough.

Romans 8:22-23 says, “The whole creation has been groaning together for redemption.”

Advent is where we embrace that groaning for redemption, but we wait with hope. We recognize and lament the brokenness and suffering in this world, but we await the final Advent, where Jesus’ return will make everything right. However, while we wait and long for Jesus to bring justice and peace here on earth, we must recognize that God’s plan of redemption is already underway. He is already restoring and redeeming the world through different means. As a community in this season, we need to think about ways that we can join in on God’s work of redemption in this world.

For many of us, the Christmas season isn’t that celebratory. It’s a reminder of broken relationships or loneliness. We wait for love or marriage without knowing if it will come. We wait for a better job or just a job. Our hope is waning. We wait for healing. We wait for justice. It’s hard to wait if you don’t know when it’s going to end, or if it is going to end. The Christmas season with all of the commercials and expectations can remind us of unfulfilled longings in our hearts.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer writes that, “We simply have to wait and wait. The celebration of Advent is possible only to those troubled in soul, who know themselves to be poor and imperfect, and who look forward to something greater to come.”

Those of us with heavy hearts can identify with the longing and waiting for Christ to come again to make everything right. As we wait, it can be very easy for us to believe that our suffering is because God abandoned us. However, Advent’s message tells a different story. God becoming man means that we have an incredible resource. Jesus knows what it’s like to experience hunger, injustice, betrayal, rejection, and suffering.

Not only did Jesus suffer to be a resource and comfort to us, He suffered to draw near to us. God descended from heaven so that He could know us. He wants to be in relationship with us. Although we may not know the reason why God allows suffering to continue, we know it isn’t because he doesn’t love or care for us. Jesus was so committed to our ultimate happiness that he was willing to suffer and die for us. Christmas is about God going to great lengths to be with us. The question for us this Advent season is — are we going to draw near to Him?

 We are excited to share this great resource with you to help you draw near to Him.  REUNION has created a daily devotional guide you can use for the entire season of Advent. Use it as a family, use it with a group, or use it on your own.

You can use this devotional to center ourselves around the story of Jesus during this Advent season. It’s available in PDF form and you can download it here . We hope you will join us in using this daily guide to study God’s word and be inspired by stories of people living into this grander story God is telling through Jesus.

Distracted: When the Ground is Holy and We Don’t Even Know it.

Distracted: When the Ground is Holy and We Don’t Even Know it.

Do you ever find yourself trying to find space to pray, and before you realize it, your phone is in your hand, or the TV is on, or you’re on social media?  We’ve said this before at Reunion, but what if we’re distracting ourselves into spiritual oblivion?

In the book of Exodus, we find this story about Moses, an early leader of the Israelite people.   Through some crazy circumstances, he was put in a position of oppressor over his own people.  Eventually he had to flee from Egypt, and he finds himself hiding among a group of people called the Midianites.

He’s out in the field one day, watching over his father-in-law’s sheep, when he notices something…

Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro, his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. 3 So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.”

It’s not surprising.  I think most of us would want to see what was happening here, but as I read this story, I keep coming back to this same thought…what if Moses got a text when he saw this bush?  What if he was scrolling Instagram, and never actually noticed the burning bush at all?

I don’t want to sound like a grumpy old man here either.  Please don’t hear, “You kids need to get off your phones!”  Hear “It breaks my heart to think about the times I’ve distracted myself out of experiencing God’s presence…and I feel like I might not be the only one.”

I mean, this was a monumental spiritual moment for Moses.  The story goes on to say,

When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”

And Moses said, “Here I am.”

5 “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” 6 Then he said, “I am the God of your father,[a] the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” 

And it’s easy to see this as a great story, because it is…but we can miss the deeper reality of what is happening here.  The ground didn’t just become holy.  God didn’t just show up when Moses walked over to the bush.  God was always there.  The bush was always burning.  The ground was always holy…Moses just became aware of it.

What if the ground is holy right now…we just aren’t aware of it?  And if that’s true…how do we become aware of it?

How do we open ourselves up to seeing what we might have missed before?  We pursue the presence of God through prayer.  We take time to intentionally look for the presence of God, and then begin to fold those practices into our everyday lives.

Maybe you’re not sure where to start with prayer.  Maybe you just need to set aside time to actually step into the practice of prayer.  Maybe prayer has become routine or ritualistic, and you need something new to breathe life into your prayer life.  Whatever it may be, my hope is that the prayer experience can become that for you.

Over the next few months we are going to create monthly opportunities to create rhythms of prayer together and alone.

The prayer experiences will be 1.5 hours long. The first 30 mins will be guided by a leader and will involve instruction and time of praying together with others. The next 30 mins will be a curriculum guided opportunity for you to pray on your own. We’ll wrap up our time by coming back together to debrief and share. (for a sneak peak of the guided curriculum, click the link below)

These will be in-person, socially distanced, outdoor gatherings. Masks are required and we will adhere to all CDC and local governmental guidelines.

If you’re interested in signing up for our next prayer experience on September 26th at 10:00AM, you can text prayerSOM (if you’re part of the Somerville community), prayerSE (if you’re part of the South End community), or prayerQ (if you’re part of the Quincy community).  

Signing up will allow us to know how many people to expect (so we can maintain CDC guidelines and make sure we allow for social distancing) and make sure we can contact you if anything changes (like weather forcing us to cancel) and you can contact your leader if something happens the day of the experience (like your car not starting).

My hope is that this experience opens our eyes to the importance of sitting in the presence of Christ, it allows us to begin practice of stepping away from our distractions, it helps us commune with Christ, experience Christ, and gives us a way to share our feelings, emotions, and experiences with Christ.

Nathan Caddell
Somerville Location Pastor

Theology Crawl: Environment & Cosmic Christ

Theology Crawl: Environment & Cosmic Christ

Welcome to the Crawl

Welcome to Theology Crawl! This year, we are meeting online to really try and unpack one big question…”How the heck did we get here?” 2020 has been a year of reckoning on a lot of fronts, and we want to take time to discuss how God-talk has often contributed to the many problems we are facing, and how better theology might help us navigate our way out. 

This week, we are talking about how Christian approaches to nature have led to the destruction of our environment and how better Christian theology can help us work towards the repair of our environment.

Before you start, make sure someone gives The Spiel to your group.


  • What is “nature”?


Lynn White, Jr.’s article “The Historical Roots of our Ecological Crisis,” published in Science magazine in 1967, argued that mass destruction of nature by humankind is an unintended consequence of religious viewpoints of nature. In particular, the viewpoints related to Christian theology as they were frequently applied, or misapplied, toward dealing with the natural world.The impact of White’s writings on the community of environmentalists, philosophers of technology, and religious scholars concerned with environmental issues was immediate and long-lasting. In the twenty years following the publication of “The Historical Roots of Our Ecological Crisis,” over 200 books and articles used White’s ideas as a focal point. His ideas penetrated the popular press, appearing in TIME, Horizon, and the New York Times, among others. Below is a quote from the article

What did Christianity tell people about their relations with the environment? While many of the world’s mythologies provide stories of creation, Greco-Roman mythology was singularly incoherent in this respect. Like Aristotle, the intellectuals of the ancient West denied that the visible world had a beginning. Indeed, the idea of a beginning was impossible in the framework of their cyclical notion of time. In sharp contrast, Christianity inherited from Judaism not only a concept of time as nonrepetitive and linear but also a striking story of creation. By gradual stages a loving and all-powerful God had created light and darkness, the heavenly bodies, the earth and all its plants, animals, birds, and fishes. Finally, God had created Adam and, as an afterthought, Eve to keep man from being lonely. Man named all the animals, thus establishing his dominance over them. God planned all of this explicitly for man’s benefit and rule: no item in the physical creation had any purpose save to serve man’s purposes. And, although man’s body is made of clay, he is not simply part of nature: he is made in God’s image.


Historical/Theological Questions

  • What do you think of White’s portrayal of Christian attitudes toward the natural world? Have you seen these sentiments in any of your communities of faith?
  • Is the relationship between humans and the environment described by White how most Christians understand this concept? 
  • Is exploitation of the Earth a uniquely Judeo-Christian concept as White claims?
  • Do you agree with his argument? Why or why not?

Contemporary Questions

  • Take a moment to read the section below (Theological Concept). Answer the following questions:
    • How do you typically think about the process of salvation?
    • How does the act of incarnation relate to non-human aspects of creation? Does it?
    • What does it mean for the “cosmos” to be redeemed/saved by God?
  • How might a cosmic Christology compliment other approaches to Christology? What does it offer? What might it miss?
  • What other resources do Christians have in their theological and Biblical toolkits to address environmental degradation?


Cosmic Christ // a Christological concept which understands Jesus Christ as the origin, beginning and end, or purpose of creation. This understanding tends to stress the ways in which the process of salvation is oriented beyond human persons.

The Christological conception of the “cosmic Christ” can be traced back to the Church’s earliest theologians. Irenaus, in Against Heresies, articulated a theory of salvation in which the entire created order was restored under the headship of Christ. Among modern theologians, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin is most well-known as someone who advocates for this position. Below are few quotes from his work which summarize key points of the concept:

  • Christ is Part of the Cosmos – “Christ has a cosmic body that extends throughout the universe.”
  • God’s Love Extends Through and To Creation – ““Love is the most universal, the most tremendous and the most mystical of cosmic forces. Love is the primal and universal psychic energy. Love is a sacred reserve of energy; it is like the blood of spiritual evolution.”
  • Redemption is a Cosmic Event – “Creation, incarnation and redemption are to be seen as no more than three complementary aspects of one and the same process.”
  • Redemption is Ongoing – “Everywhere he (Christ) draws us to him and brings us closer to himself, in a universal movement of convergence toward spirit. It is he alone whom we seek and in whom we move. But if we are to hold him we must take all things to, and even beyond, the utmost limit of their nature and their capacity for progress. Of the cosmic Christ, we may say both that he is and that he is still growing.”


  • But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare. // 2 Peter 3:10
  • The earth is the LORD’S, and all it contains, The world, and those who dwell in it. For He has founded it upon the seas And established it upon the rivers // Psalm 24:1-2
  • Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” // Genesis 1:26-28
  • A righteous man has regard for the life of his animal, But even the compassion of the wicked is cruel. // Proverbs 12:10
  • You shall sow your land for six years and gather in its yield, but on the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, so that the needy of your people may eat; and whatever they leave the beast of the field may eat. You are to do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove. // Exodus 23:10-11
  • But every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race. // James 3:7
  • Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap; they have no storeroom nor barn, and yet God feeds them; how much more valuable you are than the birds! “And which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life’s span? “If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters // Luke 12:24-28
  • “We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. // Romans 8:22-23
  • He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him and for him. He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. // Colossians 1:15-17


  • Doth not all nature around me praise God? If I were silent, I should be an exception to the universe. Doth not the thunder praise Him as it rolls like drums in the march of the God of armies? Do not the mountains praise Him when the woods upon their summits wave in adoration? Doth not the lightning write His name in letters of fire? Hath not the whole earth a voice? And shall I, can I, silent be?” // Charles Spurgeon
  • The gravity of the ecological situation reveals how deep is the human moral crisis” // Pope John Paul II
  • Climate change is an issue that impels us to think about God’s justice and how we are to echo it in our world. // Rowan Williams
  • We must accept that a number of conservative evangelicals, especially from older generations, will never support significant action on climate change, especially if it means signing a global treaty. // Lisa Vox
  • We have lived our lives by the assumption that what was good for us would be good for the world. We have been wrong. We must change our lives so that it will be possible to live by the contrary assumption, that what is good for the world will be good for us. And that requires that we make the effort to know the world and learn what is good for it. // Wendell Berry


Theology Crawl: Environment & Cosmic Christ

Theology Crawl: Sexuality & Abuse

Welcome to the Crawl

Welcome to Theology Crawl! This year, we are meeting online to really try and unpack one big question…”How the heck did we get here?” 2020 has been a year of reckoning on a lot of fronts, and we want to take time to discuss how God-talk has often contributed to the many problems we are facing, and how better theology might help us navigate our way out. 

Happy 100th Anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment! This week, we are talking about how Christian theology has been used to justify the oppression and abuse of women and how it might help fight the oppression of women.

Before you start, make sure someone gives The Spiel to your group.


What has the #MeToo movement meant to you?


Religiously inspired violence against women has a long history in Western tradition. The witch craze of the 16th and 17th centuries was a prominent example. During this time, women across the Western world were rounded up, accused of witchcraft and often hung. The sexual dimenions of this abuse are not noted as much, but there is an undeniable sexual subtext that corresponded to medieval, and perhaps contemporary, conceptions of women. The Malleus Maleficarum, or The Hammer of Witches, was written by a catholic clergymen namec Heinrich Kramer in 1486. The book offers guidance on how to identify and catch witches. It also provides insight into how women were perceived by men in the early modern period.

As for the first question, why a greater number of witches is found in the fragile feminine sec than among men… the first reason is, that they are more credulous, and since the chief aim of the devil is to corrupt faith, therefore he rather attacks them… the second reason is, that women are naturally more impressionable, and … the third reason is that they have slippery tongues, and are unable to conceal from their fellow-women those things which by evil arts they know.. But the natural reason is that she is more carnal than a man, as it is clear from her many carnal abominations. And it should be noted that there was a defect in the formation of the first woman, since she was formed from a bent rib, that is, a rib of the breast, which is bent as it were in a contrary direction to a man. And since through this defect she is an imperfect animal, she always deceives … And this is indicated by the etymology of the word; for ‘Femina’ comes from ‘Fe’ and ‘Minus,’ since she is ever weaker to hold and preserve the faith.. To conclude. All witchcraft comes from carnal lust, which is in women insatiable.


Historical/Theological Questions

  • How does the text describe women? What are some of the traits listed? How do women compare to men?
  • How are women sexualized in this text? How is that sexuality connected to witchcraft and faith?
  • How is this statement an expression of patriarchy (i.e. a social system in which power is held by men)?
  • How do you think this conception of women affected their treatment? How might sexual assault of a woman be conceptualized in this framework?
  • What of these views do you see at work in today’s society, if any?
  • Do any of the conceptions of women described above find justification in the Bible? Why or why not? 
  • Do you think there are alternate ways to construct a conception of women/femininity using the Bible? If yes, how so? If not, why?

Contemporary Questions

  • Read the section below titled, “Theological Concept: Texts of Terror.” How have stories of sexual abuse in the Bible impacted you?
  • Does the Bible’s and historical Christianity’s context of patriarchy disqualify them as tools for combating the oppression and abuse of women (i.e. can either of these things help us)?
  • What theological ideas or Biblical passages can help us as we seek to address sexual violence against women?
  • In your view, what perceptions about women and femininity need to be addressed to halt the abuse and oppression of women in our society?


Phyllis Trible is a biblical scholar who studies the Hebrew Scriptures from a feminst perspective. She highlighted four texts about the abuse of women in the Bible which she called the “texts of terror.” These texts are challenging in that they feature violence against women, but do not explicilty condemn it. Indeed, they seem to treat violence against women as normative. The texts she highlights are:

  • Genesis 16:1-16: Hagar, a female slave, is used, abused, and then rejected by God’s chosen family.
  • Judges 19:1-30: An unnamed concubine is raped by a mob, murdered and then dismembered by her male companion
  • 2 Samuel 13:1-22: The princess Tamar is raped by her half-brother and then discarded and left desolate
  • Judges 11:1-40: Jepthah kills his only daughter due to a foolhardy vow made to God.


  • As in all the congregations of the saints, women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. // 1 Cor. 14:33-35
  • There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. // Galatians 3:28
  • But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ.// 1 Corinthians 11:3
  • Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips, nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be dishonored. // Titus 2:3-5
  • Yes, and I ask you, my true companion, help these women since they have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are in the book of life. // Philippians 3:14 


  • Perhaps it is no wonder that the women were first at the Cradle and last at the Cross. They had never known a man like this Man – there never has been such another. A prophet and teacher who never nagged at them, never flattered or coaxed or patronized; who never made arch jokes about them; who rebuked without querulousness and praised without condescension; who took their questions and arguments seriously; who never mapped out their sphere for them, never urged them to be feminine or jeered at them for being female; who had no axe to grind and no uneasy male dignity to defend; who took them as he found them and was completely unself-conscious. There is no act, no sermon, no parable in the whole Gospel that borrows its pungency from female perversity; nobody could possibly guess from the words and deeds of Jesus that there was anything “funny” about woman’s nature. // Dorothy L. Sayers
  • The muting of the #MeToos of the Bible is a direct reflection of the culture of silence at work in our congregations. An assumption is woven into our sacred texts: that the experiences of women don’t matter. If religious communities fail to tell stories that reflect the experience of the women of our past, we will inevitably fail to address the sense of entitlement, the assumption of superiority and lust for punishment carried through those stories and inherited by men of the present. // Emily M.D. Scott
  • No wonder male religious leaders so often say that humans were born in sin—because we were born to female creatures. Only by obeying the rules of the patriarchy can we be reborn through men. No wonder priests and ministers in skirts sprinkle imitation birth fluid over our heads, give us new names, and promise rebirth into everlasting life. // Gloria Steinem