chapter  1
Origins of the Project
Pages 25

As with many feminist projects, this study of women who combine Christianity and Goddess Spirituality began with my own experience. Raised in a religious evangelical Protestant family, I was taught that God was a father-fi gure, a powerful king on a heavenly throne, with a son, Jesus Christ, who, while more approachable, also partook in his father’s royal and potent attributes. Unlike Catholic girls of my generation, I had no image of Mary or other women saints as quasi-divine female fi gures to relate to or venerate. The minister and all the church elders and deacons were men; women were permitted to sing in the choir, play the piano, teach children in Sunday School and provide food for church social events, not to lead, preach or teach adult members of the community. “Man,” according to the King James Version of the Bible used in church, was made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1: 27). Whether or not women refl ected the divine image was not discussed, although Eve’s sin, and the resultant fall of “man” into a chronically sinful state, made women’s status before God problematic from the start, to my youthful mind.