Call and Consequences
A Womanist Reading of Mark
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"The son of man must suffer," Jesus tells his disciples in the Gospel of Mark, and interpreters agree this warning is centrally important to the Gospel. But why must Jesus suffer, and why must his disciples face suffering if they would follow him? Is this a matter of "divine necessity," or the consequence of historical opposition to Jesus' cause?
Raquel St. Clair brings a womanist perspective to these questions, noting that marginalized persons, particularly women of color, have too often experienced the call to discipleship as a call simply to "suffering, shame, and surrogacy." Her close reading of the Gospel of Mark highlights the importance of freely accepting the consequences of answering Jesus' call.