Vocal Divine sings stanzas 2 & 3 of “Come to Our World, O Christ-Sophia” on December 22 at the Sunday morning worship service at Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran in San Francisco (Pastor Stacy Boorn). Vocal Divine (left to right): Lana Dalberg, Dionne Kohler, Alison Newvine, and Kathleen Neville Fritz.Come to our world, O Christ-Sophia, Wisdom; our hearts are longing for Your peaceful way. Lead us from fear and bondage into freedom; with You we labor to bring Your new day. Transform our world, O Christ-Sophia, Wisdom; the poor and wounded await healing days. Give us the power to sound Your call to freedom; as equal partners, we show Your new way. Led by Your Truth and Life within us growing, we follow You on Your pathways of peace. Filled with Your grace, Your loving kindness showing, we share our gifts and our visions release. REFRAIN: Our weary world still longs for new creation, for peace and justice coming to the earth. Hope springs anew; we sing in celebration; O Christ-Sophia, blessed be Your birth; O Christ-Sophia, blessed be Your birth.
Words © Jann Aldredge-Clanton, from Inclusive Hymns for Liberation, Peace, and Justice (Eakin Press, 2011).
“Christ-Sophia” is a biblical symbol of the Divine, making equal connections between male and female, black and white, Jewish and Christian traditions, thus providing a foundation for communities based on partnership instead of domination. Sophia, the Greek word for Wisdom, is a biblical female divine image that opens new possibilities for justice, liberation, and new life. New Testament writers link Christ to Wisdom, a feminine symbol of God in the Hebrew Scriptures. Wisdom (Hokmah in Hebrew) symbolizes creative, redemptive, and healing power. In their efforts to describe this same power in Christ, the apostle Paul and other New Testament writers draw from the picture of Wisdom. The apostle Paul refers to Christ as the “power of God and the Wisdom (Sophia) of God” (1 Corinthians 1:24), and states that Christ “became for us Wisdom (Sophia) from God” (1 Corinthians 1:30). The book of Proverbs describes Wisdom as the “way,” the “life,” and the “path” (4:11,22,26). The Gospel of John refers to Christ as “the way, and the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). Bringing this biblical connection of Christ and Sophia to our worship can inspire partnerships that contribute to peace and justice in our world. Christ-Sophia inspires continual new birth. Christ-Sophia empowers us to make the vision of the new creation a reality. Celebrate the birth of Christ-Sophia!
Vocal Divine began at Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran in San Francisco in April of 2011, founded by Dionne Kohler, Drumming Priestess, and Alison Newvine, church council president. Lana Dalberg, author of Birthing God: Women’s Experiences of the Divine has been adding her special touch with violin since the beginning. Kathleen Neville Fritz, theology school graduate and religion teacher, joined the group in the spring of 2013.
Vocal Divine released their first CD, “HER Sacred Songs,” in November. To purchase this CD, contact Alison Newvine: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vocal Divine creates music for Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran (http://www.herchurch.org, and plans to branch out to more venues in the coming year. Here is an excerpt from the church’s mission statement: “Our mission is to embody and voice the prophetic wisdom and word of the Divine Feminine, to uplift the values of compassion, creativity and care for the earth and one another. Our purple church is home to a diversity of spiritual traditions and perspectives that are woven together to create a strong, stretchy fabric that provides everyone with ample room to grow. We are committed to acts of justice and peace as we help shift the worldview from domination systems to mending and caring for the web-of-life.”