Queen Esther

SEPT / OCT 2017: BY VERONICA LEIGH

“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14.

Queen Esther was born as Hadassah, in 5th century B.C.E., to a Hebrew family. Her family descended from the Tribe of Benjamin, her ancestors were among the Jewish people taken in the remnant exiled to Babylon. After seventy years of exile, some of the Jews returned to Israel, while Hadassah’s branch and many others remained in what became Persia. No one knows what became of Hadassah’s parents, but her cousin Mordecai took her under his wing and raised her. While she and Mordecai lived in a pagan land and associated with unbelievers, we can probably assume that Hadassah had a typical, observant upbringing. Neither she nor Mordecai could have known what lay ahead of her… or their people. Continue reading Queen Esther

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The Neglected Queen: Katharine of Aragon

MARCH / APRIL 2017: BY CHARITY BISHOP

Katharine of Aragon is my spiritual inspiration. Since she’s been dead over four hundred years, we’ve never met, but every once in a while, someone comes along so devout, I can’t help taking notice and for me, that person is Katharine, first wife of Henry VIII, known for his six wives and the infamous rhyme “divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived!” Continue reading The Neglected Queen: Katharine of Aragon

Tinsel Town Trailblazer: Anna May Wong

SEPT / OCT 2017: BY SCARLETT GRANT

Representation in film is, and will always be, a topic of debate. There has been improvements, for example with last year’s Hidden Figures (2016), but also setbacks, like the controversial casting of Scarlett Johansson in Ghost In The Shell (2017). Long before in the Golden Era of Hollywood, one woman decided to create positive representation—Anna May Wong. Continue reading Tinsel Town Trailblazer: Anna May Wong

The Flower of the Orient

SEPT / OCT 2017: BY MARIANNA KAPLUN

I am not a prize to be won!

Far, far away in the kingdom of Agarabah lives beautiful and brave princess, the daughter of the Sultan—Jasmine. She lives according to its strict laws, but with all her heart wants to feel freedom. Jasmine doesn’t know a powerful desert magic waits to be unlocked, ready to change her world forever… Continue reading The Flower of the Orient

(Not So) Black and White: Jessica Dryden Prescott in A Distant Trumpet

SEPT / OCT 2017: BY JESSICA PRESCOTT

How old were you when you first realized good people do bad things?

Call me a late bloomer, but I was eighteen.

I was savoring my last summer before college; doing the thing I loved most in the whole world: reading. I was in the middle of a 600-page Western military epic called A Distant Trumpet, by Paul Horgan, and my precious, darling hero—Second Lieutenant Matthew Carlton Hazard—had just finished cheating on his fiancée by committing adultery with another officer’s wife.

Talk about a wake-up call, folks. Continue reading (Not So) Black and White: Jessica Dryden Prescott in A Distant Trumpet

Sept / Oct: Powerful Women

I was thirteen years old when I discovered Elizabeth I. To my eager young mind, she was an amazing woman – the first (and only) English Queen to rule her nation without marriage, on her own merit. She kept hold of her kingdom even when Rome and Spain threatened it, restored it to its former glories after her father bankrupted it, and died the most famous “virgin” in history. As a girl who never much fancied marriage, she was my heroine. Continue reading Sept / Oct: Powerful Women