The call to introduce into the liturgy female imagery for God is back in the news. I had begun to hope that the issue had gone the way of the dodo, but apparently I was wrong. Bloggers, always hungry for fodder, have quickly jumped into the fray. Fr Dwight Longenecker has given us twelve reasons why we shouldn’t address God as mother. BC at Catholicity and Covenant has offered his rejoinder to Longenecker. For anyone who participated in the liturgical wars back in the late 80s and early 90s, the arguments advanced in both articles may well elicit a sense of déjà vu. Nothing to see here. Move along. But a whole generation has passed since then.
In a galaxy far, far away, I was once immersed in these debates. I even submitted an article for publication: “The Holy Trinity Meets Ashtoreth” (the title may be the best thing about the piece, but there are some also good quotations in it, too). But more importantly, the debates led me to solicit essays from some top-notch theologians, including Thomas F. Torrance, Robert W. Jenson, Geoffrey Wainwright, Colin Gunton, J. A. DiNoia, Elizabeth Achtemeier, and Thomas Hopko. If you are interested in this subject, I commend to you Speaking the Christian God.