Afghan Women

Posted by Christine Nusse on Feb 23, 2004 | Categories: Seasons of the Spirit
“Two women in a poor farming village have emerged as heroines after they witnessed the horror of two small boys being killed as they played with little cluster bombs from an American jet. The two cleared dozens of bombs with their bare hands and detonated them, protecting the village.”

from the Sunday New York times of February 22nd, 2004

The article is worth retrieving from, enter: Afghan Women.

Mothers are fierce when protecting their children but only two in the village did take the enormous -the men said crazy- risks of removing the bombs. None of the men was brave enough. When the British bomb removers came and found out what the women had done they were amazed at the women’s courage but also that they had not been hurt in the process. Those bombs are the most dangerous unexploded ordnance of all.

Many people came to congratulate the husbands for having such courageous wives. To justify their inaction the men said that the women did not realize the danger. The 18 year old son of one of them said: “We see the incidents and repercussions of warfare, but the women don’t know.” Her mother replied: “That’s not true, I saw the dead bodies of those children. I knew exactly the consequences, but I thought we should clean the village of them and protect our children.” She said also “I was not afraid, I was just trusting in God.”

Their courage was amazing. Mothers’ love can be fierce. It did cut indeed through layers of cultural and religious repression. They did what they thought was right in their own eyes, in spite of husbands and other male relatives. That too was courage.

But their faith is what I admire the most. They trusted in God and in the truth of their love. That was simple and bold.

That made me think that we, Catholic lesbians, are often complaining about the Church, its repressive teachings and sexist liturgies. It comes in the way of our faith, keeping us from being openly gay in a community of believers sharing sacraments and all. So we stop practicing and soon our faith becomes a bit more vague and less..christian. The courage of those two women kind of jolted me into shame. What are we really risking? Do we really trust in God and in the truth of our love?

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