A reason to rejoice

Recently, my heart rejoiced at a news report that came out of Africa. In the 1980s, an Ethiopian farmer, a man named Zumra Nuru, founded a village in the northern part of that country based strictly on the equality of men and women. In this village, Awra Amba, men can be found staying home to cook, and women spend their days plowing the fields. Women and men work side by side. Their community has become so popular that many other people want to join it. Ambassador Tim Clarke of the European Union was quoted as saying that it is "the model for the world community on how gender issues should be treated" (The Christian Science Monitor, "In Ethiopia, one man's model for a just society," August 21, 2007).

Women today have made great progress in surpassing gender stereotypes and following their higher callings. Despite the continued struggle for equality in many parts of the world, these advancing steps are encouraging.

There are many inspiring examples of women who have pioneered this progress. Mary Baker Eddy is foremost among them. Through spiritual revelation and a deep trust in God, she became a healer, author, leader of a worldwide religious movement, and founder of the Monitor, as well as this magazine—an unprecedented accomplishment for a 19th-century woman. She taught and demonstrated freedom from constraints of all kinds through understanding that life is spiritual, not material. "Citizens of the world," she wrote, "accept the 'glorious liberty of the children of God,' and be free! This is your divine right" (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 227).

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October 22, 2007

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