Quiz about Ten Holy Women
Quiz about Ten Holy Women

Ten Holy Women Trivia Quiz


Through the centuries and around the planet, women have changed the world. Test your knowledge of ten women -- some ancient and some modern -- whose faith was legendary.

A multiple-choice quiz by CellarDoor. Estimated time: 5 mins.
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Author
CellarDoor
Time
5 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
364,909
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
7 / 10
Plays
3042
Awards
Top 5% quiz!
Last 3 plays: Eleanor18 (1/10), Guest 99 (5/10), gracemercy1 (6/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. There are quite a few strong women in the Hebrew Bible, but even so, this one stands out. The Book of Judges says that she ruled Israel from underneath a palm tree for four decades, and all through that time the tribes were at peace with each other - not an easy accomplishment. Who was this prophet, poet, and judge? Hint

Esther
Abigail
Deborah
Judith

2. In the Hindu epic of the Ramayana, one woman is clearly special. Sita, the wife of Rama, exemplified loyalty, sacrifice, and quiet courage. Of course, she had some advantages not available to most women: she was the avatar of what goddess of wealth, the wife of the god Vishnu? Hint

Durga
Parvati
Lakshmi
Kali

3. The Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, is a major figure in Christianity. Which of these statements about her role in the New Testament is true? Hint

As Jesus carried his cross to Golgotha, she gave him her veil to wipe his face.
She urged Jesus to perform his first miracle, at a wedding in Cana.
Visiting Jesus's tomb after his execution, she realized he had risen from the grave.
She sat by Jesus's feet, listening to him speak, while her sister worked.

4. The very first convert to Islam - well, after Muhammad - was a woman. Not only that, but she was the woman who in many ways made Islam possible: it was her fortune, accumulated through sound business practice, that supported Muhammad's religious work and bankrolled the young community of believers. Who was she? Hint

Khadija, Muhammad's wife
Halimah, Muhammad's foster mother
Fatima, Muhammad's daughter
Asma, wife of Muhammad's friend

5. In the early days of Buddhism, when the Buddha - Siddhārtha Gautama - still walked the earth, women were not permitted to join the Sangha, the monastic community. It took a very special woman, Mahāprajāpatī Gautamī, to persuade the Buddha to allow the ordination of nuns. What was her relationship to the Buddha? Hint

She was his childhood friend.
She was his aunt and foster mother.
She was the wife of one of his closest followers.
She was a stranger to him.

6. The wives of prophets have never had easy lives, but there are compensations. Emma Hale Smith was no doubt reassured in 1830 when her husband, Joseph, had a revelation that mentioned her by name, calling her an "elect lady" and charging her with writing a hymnal. To what religion did Emma Smith devote her time and faith? Hint

Baha'i
Wicca
Scientology
The Latter-Day Saint Movement

7. As modern Wicca grew in popularity, Sybil Leek was one of its most prominent faces, refusing to stay quiet about her faith. At one time she was dubbed the "most famous witch" of her home country, the land of the New Forest and the place where Gardnerian Wicca was born - where was she from? Hint

The USA
The UK
Australia
South Africa

8. Aimee Semple McPherson was a powerful force in the early twentieth century. A faith healer and evangelist, in person and on the radio, she founded the Foursquare Church in the 1920s - and less than eighty years later, it was spiritual home to eight million people. The Foursquare Church is a part of what broader Christian movement? Hint

Roman Catholicism
Pentecostalism
Baptist Christianity
Christian Science

9. Over the course of the 20th century, women worldwide have claimed rights and earned honors that were denied their predecessors. Regina Jonas was a trailblazer in faith and feminism. What did she achieve in 1935? Hint

She founded the Reform movement of Judaism.
She became the first woman ordained as a rabbi.
She became the first woman appointed as a cantor.
She finished the first official Torah scribed entirely by a woman.

10. In her lifetime, Mother Teresa was recognized around the world as a symbol of holiness. The order she founded - the Missionaries of Charity - were active around the world, but in what country did Mother Teresa herself do most of her work? Hint

Tanzania
India
Albania
Peru


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. There are quite a few strong women in the Hebrew Bible, but even so, this one stands out. The Book of Judges says that she ruled Israel from underneath a palm tree for four decades, and all through that time the tribes were at peace with each other - not an easy accomplishment. Who was this prophet, poet, and judge?

Answer: Deborah

The fourth and fifth chapters of Judges tell the story, with some delicious details. In the course of Deborah's rule, the Israelites landed in trouble, and were sorely pressed by the Canaanite army. Deborah ordered Barak into battle against the Canaanite general, Sisera, but Barak refused to go unless Deborah accompanied him. Deborah agreed, but prophesied that the glory of victory would then go to a woman. Sure enough, while Barak's and Deborah's army of 10,000 routed the Canaanites, the fleeing Sisera was slain by a woman named Jael.

One of my favorite songs of joy and faith, "Devorah's Song," is a marvelously catchy rendition of the story by Debbie Friedman.
2. In the Hindu epic of the Ramayana, one woman is clearly special. Sita, the wife of Rama, exemplified loyalty, sacrifice, and quiet courage. Of course, she had some advantages not available to most women: she was the avatar of what goddess of wealth, the wife of the god Vishnu?

Answer: Lakshmi

Vishnu, one of the most powerful gods in Hinduism, occasionally incarnated as a human or other mortal creature in times of great need. Rama, hero of the Ramayana, was one of those incarnations, or avatars, coming to Earth in order to demonstrate the ideal lifestyle; slay a dangerous demon; and reign over an empire with justice and peace. Sita, Rama's wife, was the avatar of Vishnu's wife Lakshmi, and in her turn demonstrated the ideals of the devout wife.

She was thrust unwillingly into the center of the Ramayana when she was kidnapped by a demon; her bravery and steadfastness in captivity were an inspiring counterpoint to Rama's war to set her free.
3. The Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, is a major figure in Christianity. Which of these statements about her role in the New Testament is true?

Answer: She urged Jesus to perform his first miracle, at a wedding in Cana.

Mary doesn't appear in the New Testament as often as you might think; outside the story of Jesus's birth, in Matthew 1-2 and Luke 1-2, she is mentioned only occasionally. The story of the wedding at Cana, told in John 2:1-12, is one of the very few passages where she plays a major role. As told by John, she was attending a wedding with her son and his disciples when their hosts ran out of wine; she told Jesus about the problem. While he made a token protest, telling her that his "hour [had] not yet come" (John 2:4), she calmly told the servants to follow his instructions, and Jesus obliged his mother by transforming water into fine wine for the celebration. This, as John says, "was the first of the signs through which he revealed his glory" (2:11), and it is fitting that it was Jesus's mother who launched him on this phase of his life.

The other statements refer to other Christian women of the same time period. Mary of Bethany hung on Jesus's every word when he visited her home in Luke 10:38-42. Mary Magdalene was the first witness to Jesus's resurrection in Matthew 28:1, Mark 16:9, and John 20:1; Luke 24:10 is less clear on the subject, but does place her among the earliest of human witnesses. Veronica, owner of the veil that comforted Jesus on the long walk to his execution, is not mentioned in the Bible but is a fixture of early Christian tradition.
4. The very first convert to Islam - well, after Muhammad - was a woman. Not only that, but she was the woman who in many ways made Islam possible: it was her fortune, accumulated through sound business practice, that supported Muhammad's religious work and bankrolled the young community of believers. Who was she?

Answer: Khadija, Muhammad's wife

Khadija bint Khuwaylid, who lived from about 555 to 620, was married and widowed twice before she met Muhammad. She transformed her inheritance from her husbands into a successful trading business, and eventually hired Muhammad as a business agent. His honesty and integrity - and perhaps some hints of his holiness - inspired her to consider marrying a third time. In the end, she and Muhammad had six children together, and were married for a quarter of a century before her death. Though polygamy was common in that time and place, Muhammad married no one else while Khadija lived.

Khadija played a crucial role in the founding of Islam. Muhammad was terrified after his first revelation; Khadija comforted him, reassuring him that he was a good man and God would not let him suffer, and converted to Islam on the spot. The money from her business allowed Muhammad to focus on his budding religion, and it also saved early Muslims from a number of tight spots - she helped keep the community fed during a nasty trade boycott, and ransomed Muslims out of captivity. Her love and devotion survived her; long after her death, Muhammad remembered her as a perfect woman, and the best wife he could ever have been granted by God.
5. In the early days of Buddhism, when the Buddha - Siddhārtha Gautama - still walked the earth, women were not permitted to join the Sangha, the monastic community. It took a very special woman, Mahāprajāpatī Gautamī, to persuade the Buddha to allow the ordination of nuns. What was her relationship to the Buddha?

Answer: She was his aunt and foster mother.

Mahāprajāpatī Gautamī, whose surname shows her family relationship to the Buddha, was his mother's younger sister. She was married to the same king as her sister, which was a common royal practice of the time. So, when the Buddha's mother died only a few days after his birth, Mahāprajāpatī was the natural choice to raise him, along with her own children. As an adult, of course, the Buddha renounced his old life in order to preach his insights and help others attain enlightenment. His half-brother followed him. Mahāprajāpatī became more and more intrigued by her nephew's teachings and begged him to ordain her as a nun - once, twice, three times.

But three refusals weren't enough to stop Mahāprajāpatī. Accompanied by half a thousand women, she put on yellow robes, cut off her hair, shaved her head, and walked 575 kilometers (357 miles) to find her nephew. Her determination, and the help of a cousin, persuaded the Buddha to bend the lingering rules of their culture, establishing an order of nuns subordinate to the monks. Mahāprajāpatī and her 500 companions became famously holy women, and they all achieved nirvana together when their leader was 120 years old.
6. The wives of prophets have never had easy lives, but there are compensations. Emma Hale Smith was no doubt reassured in 1830 when her husband, Joseph, had a revelation that mentioned her by name, calling her an "elect lady" and charging her with writing a hymnal. To what religion did Emma Smith devote her time and faith?

Answer: The Latter-Day Saint Movement

Emma (1804-1879) married Joseph Smith in 1827, the year he was finally able to begin the work of translating the golden plates that became the basis of the Book of Mormon. Joseph dictated the English words, but it was Emma who set pen to page to record them. Three years later, in 1830, the church that would become the Latter-Day Saint Movement was founded, Emma was baptized, and the world began to turn on the new faith. The revelation about Emma, now preserved as section 25 of the Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, is a model of encouragement:

"If thou art faithful and walk in the paths of virtue before me, I will preserve thy life, and thou shalt receive an inheritance in Zion. Behold, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou art an elect lady, whom I have called ... Keep my commandments continually, and a crown of righteousness thou shalt receive."

Emma obeyed. She finished assembling a hymnal for the young church in 1835; in 1842, she founded the Ladies' Relief Society as a charitable arm of the church, and became its first president. Just two years later, Joseph was murdered in an anti-Mormon riot, and Emma and her children felt shut out by the desperate politics of a church in peril. She remained a Mormon all her life, however. In her later years she found comfort in the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (now known as the Community of Christ), of which her son was the prophet.
7. As modern Wicca grew in popularity, Sybil Leek was one of its most prominent faces, refusing to stay quiet about her faith. At one time she was dubbed the "most famous witch" of her home country, the land of the New Forest and the place where Gardnerian Wicca was born - where was she from?

Answer: The UK

Born in 1923, Leek attributed her devotion to Wicca to centuries of witchcraft in her family; it was her grandmother who started her education in astrology, for which Leek always felt a special affinity. In 1951, the Witchcraft Act of 1735 - which banned both the practice of witchcraft and the appearance of practicing witchcraft - was repealed, and Leek was among the first to live openly as a practicing witch in the years thereafter.

Her courage brought her the title of "Britain's most famous witch," bestowed by the BBC - but it also brought hordes of disruptive visitors to her little village, and eventually her landlady told her she would have to move out. Leek took those instructions further than they were perhaps intended, and moved to America, where she enjoyed a career in astrology and became a TV and radio expert on witchcraft and all things occult.

She died in 1982, and is still remembered with fondness and honor by the many people who have followed in her footsteps.
8. Aimee Semple McPherson was a powerful force in the early twentieth century. A faith healer and evangelist, in person and on the radio, she founded the Foursquare Church in the 1920s - and less than eighty years later, it was spiritual home to eight million people. The Foursquare Church is a part of what broader Christian movement?

Answer: Pentecostalism

Pentecostal Christians place a high importance on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, on their reading of the Bible, and on a baptism in the Holy Spirit that makes possible faith healing and speaking in tongues. The International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, based in Los Angeles, California, takes its name from a concept that would be familiar to other Pentecostals: the idea that Jesus Christ ministers to humanity in the four ways of salvation, baptism, healing, and the second coming.

McPherson (1890-1944) was already a tremendous celebrity on the Christian revival scene when she took up a collection to build the Angelus Temple in Los Angeles. Her fundraising was more successful than she'd dreamed, and the Temple soon evolved into a denomination that survived long after its founder's death.
9. Over the course of the 20th century, women worldwide have claimed rights and earned honors that were denied their predecessors. Regina Jonas was a trailblazer in faith and feminism. What did she achieve in 1935?

Answer: She became the first woman ordained as a rabbi.

Jonas, born in Berlin in 1902, became a teacher as an adult - but she had another calling. After years of hard work and struggle, she graduated from a Jewish seminary with a dissertation arguing that Jewish law allowed women to be ordained. Still, it took some searching and several rejections before she found a rabbi willing to ordain her despite her sex. This man was Rabbi Max Dienemann, who headed the Conference of Liberal Rabbis in Germany and ordained her as a rabbi at the end of 1935 in Offenbach am Main. Though she never had a permanent spiritual home in any one synagogue, she preached and taught in a variety of places, in addition to her tireless work as a community chaplain in some of the most trying times in history. Jonas was sent to the Theresienstadt concentration camp in 1942; later, a list of her lecture topics, as well as some sermon notes, was found in the camp archives. She was murdered in Auschwitz in 1944, and the world lost a remarkable woman. Her legacy lives on, however, in the many women who now serve honorably as rabbis in Conservative, Reconstructionist, and Reform Judaism.

In 1938, Regina Jonas wrote of her calling, "God planted in our heart skills and a vocation without asking about gender. Therefore, it is the duty of men and women alike to work and create according to the skills given by God."
10. In her lifetime, Mother Teresa was recognized around the world as a symbol of holiness. The order she founded - the Missionaries of Charity - were active around the world, but in what country did Mother Teresa herself do most of her work?

Answer: India

Born an Albanian in 1910, in what is now Macedonia, Agnes Gonxhe Bojaxhiu took the name Teresa when she became a Roman Catholic nun in Darjeeling in 1931. After serving some time as a teacher in a convent school, she felt called in the late 1940s to go out into society and help the poor.

She soon wound up in Calcutta, opening schools, orphanages, and hospices, and other nuns followed her. Recognition and fame followed too; she won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. By the time of her death, the Missionaries of Charity were operating in more than a hundred nations, and her church was already acting to place her on the road to sainthood.
Source: Author CellarDoor

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