Welcome to the Supreme Court Judge Amy Coney “Handmaid” Barrett.
What is America becoming? Or has already become? Or perhaps always has been?
Now we will have a Supreme Court Justice who is a member of People of Praise a Group, or “Cult” if you will, which in its earlier days referred to women as “handmaids.”
When Margaret Atwood’s dystopian political tale “The Handmaid’s Tale” became an international TV hit the meaning of the word “handmaid” leapt into the public consciousness..
Handmaid Definition: Ripped from their previous lives by the Eyes, members of the government watch group, the handmaids are fertile women assigned to the households of the elite Wives and Commanders. Their only duty is to carry children for these families.
Aware of the uproar, Judge Barrett’s group now uses the anodyne term “women leaders.”
Excerpted from Mother Jones 9.24.2020
Two years ago, when Barrett’s name was floated as a potential candidate to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, a post appeared in a Facebook group of ex-members of charismatic Christian communities. “I don’t want a current member of this cult to be sitting on the Supreme Court,” the onetime People of Praise member wrote. “And it was not very many years ago that I admired them very much and was almost seduced into thinking they had something spiritually real and rich going for them.” More recently, another ex-member wrote, “I think we better start now fighting her nomination. I can’t quite imagine People of Praise on the Supreme Court.”
Members of the Christian right lobbied hard for President Trump to tap 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Amy Coney Barrett to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court. A current Notre Dame law school professor, 48-year-old Barrett is a devout Catholic and mother of seven children, two of whom were adopted from Haiti and one who is a child with Down syndrome—all attributes that conservatives see as evidence that she will help overturn Roe v. Wade if confirmed. But Barrett brings another resume entry to the table that, while possibly enhancing her appeal to evangelicals, makes her an unusual candidate for the job.
In 2006, she gave a commencement speech at Notre Dame law school in which she told the grads, “Always keep in mind that your legal career is but a means to an end, and…that end is building the kingdom of God.” But Barrett has not publicly addressed her involvement with People of Praise
People of Praise, a charismatic covenant community in South Bend, Indiana, that has been criticized by former members for being a religious cult. Though most of its members are Catholic, its practices, including speaking in tongues and faith healing, draw more from fundamentalist and evangelical Christianity than the Vatican.
One of its most notable features is the submissive role played by women, some of whom were called “handmaids”—at least until the Handmaid’s Tale aired in 2017, At that point, the group started referring to them as “women leaders.”
Barrett has written and spoken publicly about being a devout Catholic lawyer, even saying that during her confirmation hearing that she would not enter an order of execution if she were a federal trial judge because it would conflict with Catholic Church teaching.