Cromey Online

The writings of author, therapist, and priest Robert Warren Cromey.

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Location: San Francisco, California, United States

Monday, November 16, 2015


Women Who Knew Jesus
Bonnie Ring
AuthorHouse 2015

Dr. Ring has done the church a great service in writing and publishing Women Who Knew Jesus. She paints beautiful and touching pictures of twenty women who were powerful influences on Jesus and the church as a whole. Women depicted in the standard readings Sunday by Sunday are secondary characters basking in the aura of Jesus. Dr. Ring brings them forward as characters proclaiming the gospel of good news by their actions, words and lives. The healing of the bent over woman, the woman taken in adultery and even in the dream of Pilate’s wife, women are real people and not just foils for Jesus’ ministry.

Preachers can learn a great deal from this book about the theology and ethics of Jesus. Lay people can immerse themselves in Biblical reflection of complex material, which the author helps unscramble. Clergy and lay people can delve deeply into meditative guidance Dr. Ring provides in this 247-page book.

The scholarship and work that the author has put in is evident on every page and also in the extensive bibliography she has provided at the end of the book. She is daring in taking the position that the beloved disciple John is really Mary of Magdala.

I wish Ring had continued adding her personal experiences throughout the book as she did in some early chapters. A very small quibble is that I wish better illustrations were chosen. The pleasant ones used are too 19th century sentimental.

(Full disclosure. I have been acquainted with Dr. ring since the early 1980s. She was a clergy volunteer for a while when I was rector of Trinity Episcopal Church, San Francisco.)

Robert Warren Cromey is a priest retired and lives in San Francisco.


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