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Feminist Studies in Liturgy


Dr. Marcia McFee
The Worship Design Studio
[email protected]

Mission Statement

The Feminist Studies in Liturgy Seminar examines existing and new liturgies from a feminist perspective, and invites participants to explore new metaphors and new styles of liturgical expression and leadership.  Our commitment to inclusiveness leads us to consider not only texts but also gesture, environment, music and all aspects of embodied worship.  Our studies include the connections among formal worship, the academy and the larger society.


2020 Academy Meeting Agenda

Friday, January 4

Morning       Opening Ritual and Reconnecting

Afternoon        Womanist liturgical theology
Khalia Williams, Assistant Dean of Worship and Music; Assistant Professor in the Practice of Worship at Candler School of Theology will lead us in a discussion of observations from her recent course offering entitled: “Womanist/Feminist Spirituality and Worship.” We will talk about content, outcomes and pedagogy.

Chelsea Yarborough, Ph.D. Candidate, Homiletics and Liturgics, Theology and Practice Fellow, Graduate Department of Religion, Vanderbilt University will lead us in a conversation about some of her findings through her dissertation work ("That'll Preach: Decentering the Pulpit through the Non-Pulpit Homiletical Practice of Black Women”) and how she will imagine a future project dealing more specifically liturgical studies on this topic.

Saturday, January 4

Morning          Womanist liturgical theology
Guest (Skype): Rev. Yolanda Norton, Professor of Hebrew Bible, San Francisco Theological Seminary and creator of the Beyonce Mass, Womanist Worship Service, “How black women find their voice, represent the image of God, and create spaces for liberation”

Morning/Afternoon      Works of seminar members, including but not limited to: Jill Crainshaw, “When Wisdom Is Silent: Seeking Liturgy's Strange Wisdom in Noise-Saturated Public Places;" Janet Walton, worshiping with refugees; Heather Murray Elkns, “Buying the World and Keeping Company: a feminist reflection on soda;” Sylvia Sweeney, new book release

Closing Ritual 


2019 Academy Meeting Agenda

Friday, January 4
10:30 AM       Opening Ritual and Reconnecting

1:30 PM         Guest: Bishop Karen Oliveto, Rocky Mountain Area, United Methodist Church, first openly-lesbian Bishop elected in the UMC. We will look at the rite of her consecration as Bishop in light of our continuing discussion of the role of ritual in protest, lament and prophecy

Saturday, January 4
 9:00 AM         Story-gathering – we will collectively construct the story of this seminar for the history being written by Don LaSalle of the NAAL. We will look at rituals associated with this seminar’s gathering and rituals that have been offered to the greater body by this seminar and their implications for the history of the NAAL.

10:30 AM        Continuation of study of rituals of protest and lament brought by seminar participants

1:30 PM          Continuation of study of rituals of protest and lament brought by seminar participants


2018 Seminar Agenda
Friday, January 5

10:30 AM Opening Ritual and Reconnecting

1:30 PM Elizabeth Sue Moore, Liturgies of Lament

3:30 Rituals of Protest:–group contributions

Saturday, January 6
9:00 AM Beth A. Richardson and Marcia McFee–Irish Pilgrimage and Liturgical Accompaniment

1:30 AM Hye Ran Kim-Cragg: First Nations of Vancouver and Closing Ritual