In a recent discussion with a Presbyterian friend, I thought about the theory of the Millionth Circle. My friend described the Presbyterian Women's Circles. While the stewardship office of the Presbytery contacts members regarding their ability to tithe, the P.W. Circles hold luncheons each month determining the needs of their community. A collection is taken referred to as: Least Coin Collection. Each woman is asked to empty her purse of change. The practice is based on the story of the "Widow's Mite." While wealthy people in the temple could give without consequence, Jesus witnesses a widow offering her last two coins. As the story goes, Jesus remarks that her two coins will do more than most, because she gave from a point of sacrifice.
Thinking about my own experience as a Catholic, there are few women's circles like the circle of religious women. In today's world, working with under-served populations, sometimes going against the hierarchy of the church, Nuns are the backbone of Catholic teachings. From the earliest times, religious women have modeled obedience and faith. I remember hearing about a nun who lived in a poor neighborhood riddled with drug dealings. She didn't carry a big stick, or yell at her neighbors, but walked the community, getting to know the drug dealers. She befriended them and in turn was able to decrease the incidence of drugs in her neighborhood. How was she able to do such a thing? When she entered her home, she entered the circle of sisters who supported her efforts.
In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints the strength of the community lies in the focus on family. Early in church history the Women's Relief Society was formed. The Relief Society is a strong component today, providing support in every stage of a woman's life, from religious formation to marriage to child birth. You get the picture. The wisdom of this arm of Mormonism is that the web of support is there between women to help raise children and simultaneously care for the elderly, encompassing all women. There is an honor to these women that often knows few boundaries.
Jean Shinoda Bolen's theory is not religious in nature, isn't supported by any religious practice that I know, but is part and parcel of women's groups within religions. She suggests that if women were to lead governments and countries there would be an automatic reduction in wars, due to the fact that very few women want to see their child fight, or possibly be in harms way.