Anne, Grandmother of God
The following comments about an early draft of All My Grace come from a Roman Catholic friend of the Rabbi, Anne. While many consider a friend biased, Anne’s remarks are included because the Rabbi found her candid words very encouraging.
The Rabbi has actually nicknamed his friend Anne, “grandmother of God” (Anne likes the nickname to the degree that she refers to herself as “G of G”). He so dubbed her because Anne is the name of the Virgin Mary’s mother, and Mary, by the Catholic Church, is called the “Mother of God.” Therefore, the Rabbi remarks—as a newborn, human female is born with all of her lifetime’s supply of eggs already produced—because the one, particular egg of Mary that provided Jesus with half of his DNA was manufactured in Anne’s body by the still-fetal Mary, the Rabbi believes that Anne, mother of Mary, deserves special recognition due to her having been the vessel that once contained what would become half of Jesus Christ. Hence, since Mary is termed, by those who believe her the God-bearer, the Theotokos, the Rabbi—to lightheartedly bring up the often very-heated topic of whether it is right to define Mary as the Mother of God—considers Anne, Mary’s mother, the “demi-Theotokos,” that is, the Grandmother of God.
I opened my eyes and mind to your draft, with the conscious intention of maintaining an observer’s perspective and taking notes so that I could provide thorough, detailed feedback for you. Writers don’t need cheerleaders; you need good editors!
But by the time I read the first two pages, I realized I would just have to sit and absorb this mystical/theological/interpersonal account [that is] so conversational and accessible, yet dense with meaning and almost Byzantine in order!?
Thus, my late response. I had to read through it once, then a second time with a mind for editing. And the second time brought me no closer to being a good editor for you. I am so sorry. It’s as if you have your own dialect, and I have to learn it before I can provide good feedback!!
I am fascinated and I was very much moved by All My Grace. To say it resonated with me would be the blandest of understatements. For one, the subject matter is profound and stirred my mind, heart, and soul. Your writing style is engaging and so extremely idiosyncratic, I think I would have to sleep on it before I could offer suggestions! I feel like a let-down for not having specific feedback other than the request to read the next section. . . .
Conversational in tone, you, nevertheless, have a gift for instant extrapolation of theses and lessons. . . . If anything, it’s as if you manage to encompass vast theories about modern existence, values, and the forces of good and evil at work in our lives, all distilled into organized lists of principles and wildly interesting, very personal anecdotes.
Yours is such a unique voice Rabbi! And, you do make a reader laugh out loud at your accounts of advising/critiquing strangers on the street! Wow.
Yet, your motivation is so pure, even as you behave in a “bossy” way, your ego is in check due to your true desire to educate and channel divine grace.