A Woman’s Way: The Forgotten History of Women Spiritual Directors

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9780333929896: A Woman’s Way: The Forgotten History of Women Spiritual Directors

Given the significance of spiritual direction in modern Christianity, surprisingly little attention has been given to the tradition upon which today's spiritual direction is built. A long and interesting history does exist, though, as shown by Patricia Ranft in A Woman's Way . Ranft's insights shed light on the understanding society had of women as spiritual beings and on the position of women in a Christian society. This book delineates the history of spiritual direction for women and by women within the larger context of the history of Christian spirituality and its understanding of human perfectibility. By examining the ways in which women practiced spiritual direction, this study reveals the degree to which women influenced society by using an avenue of influence previously overlooked by scholars.

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About the Author:

PATRICIA RANFT is Professor of History at Central Michigan University. Her books include, Women and the Religious Life in Premodern Europe (SMP 1996) and Women and Spiritual Equality in Christian Traditions (SMP 1998).

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Ranft (history, Central Michigan Univ.; Women and the Religious Life) employs a broad definition of "spiritual direction" to reveal the often unnoticed power and influence women have wielded throughout church history. Beginning in the New Testament, "women were central in the quest for happiness and in the dissemination of Jesus' direction of how to attain it." For instance, "the five great women of John's gospelDMary (mother of Jesus), Mary of Bethany, Mary Magdalene, the Samaritan woman, and Martha" provide important direction. This trend continued in the Patristic and medieval times and was invigorated in the early modern period. It continues in both Roman Catholic and Protestant Christianity, a history Ranft analyzes with insight. Recommended for academic, seminary, and public libraries.DCarolyn M. Craft, Longwood Coll., Farmville, VA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Book Description Palgrave MacMillan, United Kingdom, 2001. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 2000 ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. Given the significance of spiritual direction in modern Christianity, surprisingly little attention has been given to the tradition upon which today s spiritual direction is built. A long and interesting history does exist, though, as shown by Patricia Ranft in A Woman s Way . Ranft s insights shed light on the understanding society had of women as spiritual beings and on the position of women in a Christian society. This book delineates the history of spiritual direction for women and by women within the larger context of the history of Christian spirituality and its understanding of human perfectibility. By examining the ways in which women practiced spiritual direction, this study reveals the degree to which women influenced society by using an avenue of influence previously overlooked by scholars. Bookseller Inventory # SPR9780333929896

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