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    Modern Catholic Women, Talks

    A Letter to the Woman Wondering about Feminism

    A Letter to the Woman Wondering about Feminism -- FemCatholic.com

    In 1995, Pope John Paul II started a conversation.

    You’ve probably heard of it – his Letter to Women.

    Now, over twenty years later, Chloe Langr is continuing that conversation. Chloe runs the Letters to Women podcast, and she invited me to chat with her for the latest episode “A Letter to the Woman Wondering about Feminism.”

    A Letter to the Woman Wondering about Feminism -- podcast episode -- FemCatholic.com

    Here’s a few of the things we talked about in this episode:

    • Why feminism always resonated with me, wanting to be “part of the boys club,” and how it led me to start FemCatholic
    • Mythbusting on what it means to be a “good catholic woman”
    • Differences between modern secular feminists and catholic feminists – what modern feminists get right about equality, and the advantage catholic feminists have
    • Should you call yourself a feminist, or does “catholic” already cover everything?
    • Virginity and it’s history of empowering women
    • Being a new mom myself, I talk about why feminism needs to support moms in the culture and the workplace
    • NFP and birth control (from a feminist perspective, of course 😉)
    • Seeing woman’s body as a burden – even in marriage
    • What you need to know about how modern feminism has impacted men – and what to do about it
    • What I want to tell you if you disagree with church teaching

    Listen to our entire conversation on iTunes or online.

    ♦♦♦

    Keep chatting with me on Facebook Live! – this Tuesday, Sept. 26th @ 1pm CST

    I had SO much fun talking to Chloe about feminism, and now I want to talk with all of YOU!

    These are really important, and tough, topics. There’s a lot we need to discuss.

    Here’s how to join:

    1. Join the Facebook event.
    2. Before Tuesday, download the episode and listen to it.
    3. Tell me what resonated with you, and what rubbed you the wrong way. Send me your questions!

    Talk to you soon! 🙂

    — Samantha


    Samantha Povlock is the Founder + Creative Director of FemCatholic. You can learn more about her here.

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    Dear Edith

    Dear Edith Response #2 – Julie

    I'm not maternal: Catholic women respond -- FemCatholic.com

    Read the original question here.

    Dear anonymous,

    One of the beautiful revelations for me of reading St. John Paul II’s Letter to Women, was discovering the Catholic church upheld women working. Up unto then, I thought the only way to be a true woman was to be a SAHM. Being present in the workplace as a woman balances the workplace environment.

    God perhaps has withheld imparting the desire for biological maternity to spare you the agony of wanting something that is not yet attainable in your life because you are single. You can live what is called spiritual motherhood.

    Spiritual motherhood is a beautiful gift. I witnessed this in a profound way on a mission trip to Haiti. I was with a group of college students, priests, and consecrated women. We were ministering in the wound clinic. The wounds were severe and very painful. A consecrated woman knelt down at the feet of a woman with a severe toe wound. Very lovingly, gently and so Christ like she soothed the women as the consecrated debrided her foot – without pain meds. This consecrated woman was ministering Christ present in the Haitian woman. Such a profound beauty of spiritual motherhood. Also on the trip, I witnessed these consecrated women rock babies, feed babies, and lovingly hold them. Again, another way to care for others in our femininity in lieu of biological motherhood.

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    Modern Catholic Women

    No, “Cheap Sex” is Not Why No One’s Getting Married

    No, Cheap Sex is not why no one's getting married -- FemCatholic.com

    Is cheap sex making marriage obsolete? Mark Regnerus, sociologist and author of a new book on the topic, sure thinks so. (Incidentally, so does my late grandmother, who took every opportunity to counsel, re: “giving the milk away for free.”)

    He’s right on one point: marriage rates are decreasing. But slut-shaming, with a side of porn and masturbation, isn’t the primary source of this decline.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/06/23/144-years-of-marriage-and-divorce-in-the-united-states-in-one-chart/?utm_term=.0a4b89d3d4f8

    Do we really believe, as a society, for the past 241 years of American history, men simply followed their phallus into lifelong marriage in exchange for an exclusive, all-access pass to unlimited sex?

    I’d expect this kind of reasoning from Hugh Hefner or James Bond. Surprisingly, it’s quite prevalent in Christian dating advice books. The best cure for sexual desire before marriage? Simply get married!

    As a married woman, please, hear me out: this is terrible, terrible advice.

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    Dear Edith

    Dear Edith: Trusting Men

    Catholic women answer: how can you trust again after a breakup? FemCatholic.com

    Dear Edith,

    2 years ago (almost) I broke up with my then boyfriend. We were best friends for 8 years, and I only had started dating him after he left seminary.

    We dated for 6 months, but come to find out he had been cheating on me for the duration of my relationship (was he cheating on God too because he was hooking up with girls while in seminary 🤔).

    While I’m grateful to be out of the relationship, and even more grateful to say that me and the “other woman” are now best friends, I still find my self struggling to trust men.

    The few dates I’ve been on I’ve been rambling and nervous. I get nervous when men touch me (hugging, handshakes, shoulder touches). The only men I feel comfortable around are relatives, gay men, and guys whom my other lady friends are dating.

    My mom insists that I wait for a “good catholic man” but my ex seemed like a “good catholic man” so I can’t even trust that.

    What are some tips for trusting men, or trusting people in general when I’ve been hurt so badly?

    — Anonymous


    Responses to this question will be accepted until Sept. 30, 2017.

    Want to respond? Or have a question of your own?

    See the Dear Edith page for more info.

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    Modern Catholic Women

    The one big thing missing from the Working Mom debate 

    The big thing missing from the working mom debate for Catholic women mothers -- FemCatholic.com

    “Oh, I’m going to be a stay-at-home mom,” she said, surrounded by the other women at brunch.

    They nodded, giving their approval, and the affirmation so many Catholic women seek these days.

    I get it.

    We want to acknowledge the value in staying home, in foregoing apparent worldly success in order to give day in and day out to one’s family. Because for all the advancements feminism has brought women, greater recognition of caregiving and homemaking hasn’t been one of them.

    Because for all the advancements feminism has brought women, greater recognition of caregiving and homemaking hasn’t been one of them.

    But what if in proclaiming their desire to be SAHMs, women think they’ve rejected modern feminism, and they’ve actually given into it?

    Let me explain.

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    Dear Edith

    Dear Edith Response #1 – Brittany

    Dear Edith: I'm Not Maternal - read response #1 here on FemCatholic.com

    Read the original question here.

    Dear I’m Not Maternal,

    Regarding the lack of maternal feelings . . . I used to want to be a nun.

    In fact, I’d often remark that I found the idea of sex repulsive, and childbirth? Forget it. “Take my womb; I don’t need it!”

    Then, I had what could only be described as a divine dream. It helped me realize that the path toward the convent was not what God wanted for me; this shook my sense of self, because I felt that a woman’s identity in the Church seemed to be built around holy virginity or mothering as many children as possible. I really struggled with God’s will for a long time, and it took therapy for me to discover that a large portion of my desire for the convent was my fear of intimacy and my unwillingness to surrender control. . .

    I felt that a woman’s identity in the Church seemed to be built around holy virginity or mothering as many children as possible.

    Then I met THE ONE. It was like a light bulb went off and I realized why I wasn’t meant for the convent after all. I still wasn’t keen on the idea of children, though. I was a strong, independent woman who resented the box that society tries to put women in.

    Now, I didn’t mind other people’s kids. Heck, I was a teacher! But surely I was too impatient/selfish/unfit for motherhood. I had more to offer life than another human on an already crowded planet.

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    Dear Edith

    Dear Edith Response #3 – Catherine

    Dear Edith finding meaning as a SAHM -- FemCatholic.com

    Read the original question here.

    Dear Annemarie,

    I felt a little envious when I first read of your plight to be quite honest.

    Studying and working, newly married (TEN months before baby born), sick as a dog and incredibly busy, I was in denial about the realities for a good part of my first pregnancy. I winged it completely, cried at the birthing classes, couldn’t do the breathing, ran out of the birth video in horror.

    With the hindsight of 25 years and 5 children, what would I do differently?

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