Several interrelated themes emerge from surveying that work, which I wish to highhght here, each of which shows Coakley to be unusual sort of feminist: one who would have us enter more deeply into, and not shrink from, the church's traditional teaching about Trinity, Christology, and the hfe of prayer and progress into God.1 Paul as Feminist Trinitarian Theologian Romans 8 is a passage close to the heart of Coakley's early work. Elsewhere she suggests Dionysius' description of the mutually ecstatic relationship between God and humans as an image for human mutuality that allows for both equality and difference.29 While deeply problematic statements about gender, relationships, and power run throughout the patristic tradition, Coakley thinks there are also untapped resources there for our own faithful living today. Only more recently still are we learning the radical theological ramifications of that ecclesial decision: a closer marriage between the fathers and feminism, orthodoxy and sociology, the theological academy and the prison, the rigors of Christian thought and the joys of the life of faith.
Closer than Kissing
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