Grandmother Galaxy cover photo

shirley ranck 2013GrandmotherGalaxy ShirleyRanckThe Grandmother Galaxy is one woman’s journey into three spirals of learning that have emerged and confront us in the 21st century--women’s creative spirituality, a growing appreciation of our earthly home, and a deepening respect for the varied cultures created by human beings. In each of these spirals the image of a fierce and powerful old woman arises as central to our journey.

The Reverend Dr. Shirley Ann Ranck brings both personal and professional insight to her work. Trained in education, psychology and ministry, she has drawn upon all these disciplines as well as her various personal lives as wife, mother, and single parent. She is well-known and loved for creating the ground-breaking female spiritual journey contained in the feminist thealogy curriculum and book, Cakes for the Queen of Heaven.

Introduction to the Study Guide

In the Foreword to The Grandmother Galaxy, Elizabeth Fisher asks “What is the shape of a life?”  She suggests that the book will tell you something about the shape of my life.  She’s right; it is a memoir, a recounting of my particular journey, both personal and professional.  If you read and discuss it, however, it may also become part of the shape of your life, your journey.  I suggest that you keep a journal and consider for each session some questions that may be useful to you in your way through The Grandmother Galaxy.

This study guide will introduce you to three large issues facing us in the 21st century, and a few ideas about what is needed for the future.  If you wish to discuss the book and the issues in more detail, additional sessions can be planned.  Allow time for introducing a chapter or a topic, for writing in your journals (it helps to focus on a few questions), and for discussing your responses.  Begin and end with the lighting and extinguishing of the chalice.

When people register for the class, ask them to buy the book, or provide copies by charging a fee for the course.  Gather a group of eight to twelve people and seat them in a circle with the leader or facilitator as part of the circle.  Place an easel with newsprint and marker near the leader.  In the center of the circle place a small table with a chalice and lighter or matches.  If you wish, add a cloth, a flower or other decorations to the table as appropriate for the particular sessions.  Provide each participant with a small notebook or journal and have pens available.  Have some light refreshments available each time during the break. Next: Session 1 – Your Journey


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