Theology for EveryBody is meant to be a multi-use space. It’s going to be an online portfolio of my writing. It is also going to be a place for me to expand on the sometimes political, always theological commentary that has become a staple of my Instagram account.
Bodies are not just vessels of suffering (though they can be deeply enmeshed with it.) “Pro-life/pro-choice” is an ineffective, incomplete, and inconsiderate dichotomy. Fertility awareness is awesome. Art and media are critically important. Fat-phobia is a grave sin. The marginalized are our most sacred of neighbors. Cognitive disability does not exist to make one a receptacle of pity. Women are powerful. Taking care of the planet must be a priority. Theology is for every body.
“Catholic” is supposed to mean “Universal.” But “Universal” often suggests “all people treated the same way.” We know quite well that not all people are treated the same way.
What if we thought of the Catholic Church as the Everybody Church?
When I think “everybody,” I think of… those who are religions other than Catholic. Those Christians who aren’t Catholic. Those who don’t have any religion. People of all races and ethnicities. People who identify as LGBTQ+. People with various physical and intellectual disabilities. People with mental and chronic illnesses. People experiencing homelessness. Women. Men. Children. Teenagers. The elderly. The presently imprisoned and those recently released. The Everybody Church.
But I also want to place an emphasis on bodies. Our relationship to our bodies changes what we think about many of these groups. Bodies that look different, function differently, or are treated differently. Bodies of water. Bodies of work. The Body of Christ (both the people and the Bread.) Often for the Church, embodied theology can be shoved under the umbrella of our robust and beautiful theology of suffering. But how does that teach us to relate to our bodies?
Theology is the exploration of God. God is many and multiple. God is relationship. I won’t always be writing explicit theology here, but I hope all of my writing has theological implications. And sometimes, writing that isn’t explicitly theological can function theologically for someone else: If it supplies truth, beauty, and goodness.