The Mystics Would Like a Word

The Mystics Would Like a Word

Six Women Who Met God and Found a Spirituality for Today

About the Book

Discover a rich legacy of audacious women who forged a spirituality that is more inclusive, surprising, and empowering than we ever imagined.

“The feminist reading of women mystics I’ve wanted for ages . . . invites us into the hopeful possibility for communal healing that we desperately need right now.”—Sarah Bessey, bestselling author of Field Notes for the Wilderness and Jesus Feminist

Is there a Christian spirituality that embraces the entire reality of womanhood?

The answer, Shannon K. Evans suggests, is an emphatic yes. There is a spirituality that meets us in every part of our lives, developed by the women who came before us. Six mystics—Teresa of Ávila, Margery Kempe, Hildegard of Bingen, Julian of Norwich, Catherine of Siena, and Thérèse of Lisieux—revealed a faith big enough to hold the female experiences of sex and desire, the yearning for bodily autonomy, the challenges of motherhood and identity, as well as life with male authority and—sometimes—violence. These women, self-determining, stubborn, and unapologetically themselves, asked questions in their time that are startlingly prescient today, and fought for women’s experiences to be heard, understood, respected, and recognized as holy.

In The Mystics Would Like a Word, readers will discover the story of Christian faith and spirituality as told by these extraordinary and wise women, one that speaks directly to today’s unique experiences, and leads to wholeness, healing, and spiritual vitality.
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Praise for The Mystics Would Like a Word

“In this lively, accessible account of some of my favorite women mystics, Evans shows how their lives can illuminate, uplift, and transform ours.”―Mirabai Starr, author of Wild Mercy and Ordinary Mysticism

“Evans’s down-to-earth truth-telling nourished my spiritual journey and strengthened my contemplative life. My hunch is that it can nourish your life, too.”—Sr. Simone Campbell, SSS, author of Hunger for Hope, former leader of Nuns on the Bus, and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient

“With humor and humanity, Evans guides us all with the particular wisdom of women, welcoming us into a larger, weirder, and more compelling spirituality than we commonly encounter today.”—K.J. Ramsey, therapist, and author of The Book of Common Courage

“Evans reminds us that our modern, twenty-first-century life still holds space for the feminist lessons of the mystics, helping us craft in our own time what our spirituality looks like in this hurting and curious world.”—Kaitlin B. Curtice, award-winning author of Native and Living Resistance

“Writing with candor and urgency, Evans reminds us that the church and spiritual life also belong to women—and that liberation for women can’t help but turn into justice for the world.”—Sr. Helen Prejean, CSJ, author of Dead Man Walking and River of Fire
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About the Author

Shannon K. Evans
Shannon K. Evans is the spirituality and culture editor at the National Catholic Reporter. She is the author of Feminist Prayers for My Daughter, Rewilding Motherhood, Luminous, and Embracing Weakness. She and her family make their home in Iowa. More by Shannon K. Evans
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Random House Publishing Group