In memory of our sister, Magdalen Berns.
This page is ReSisters United’s online memorial to Magdalen Berns, 1983-2019, who sadly died from brain cancer on 13 September 2019.
Magdalen was a forerunner of the current wave of British pro lesbian, pro woman campaigning. She had a profound impact not only in raising awareness on lesbian erasure and the attack on lesbian rights and self definition, but on helping to catalyse the wider gender critical movement in the UK and beyond. Her Youtube channel ‘peak trans-ed’ thousands and Magdalen touched and influenced many ReSister member’s lives.
Magdalen’s work caused an awakening to consciousness of lesbian feminist resistance on many women’s personal journeys. In the past week, we have received several messages asking to join our group, from women moved by Magdalen’s passing and her parting messages to ‘be brave, be true, speak out and stand up for yourselves.’
We are grateful and honoured that we were able to make contact with Magdalen in her final months to let her know how she had touched our lives and inspired us to become involved in anti woman and lesbian erasure activism ourselves. We are deeply sad and sorry for the loss of Magdalen’s presence in the UK feminist community and mourn the loss of potential opportunities to spend time and collaborate with this fiercely intelligent, courageous and compassionate shero.
Magdalen was a co-founder of ‘For Women Scotland’ our ‘sister’ Scottish anti self ID campaign group and predecessor. We consider Magdalen an honorary ReSister, whose legacy we are determined to continue.
These following messages are dedicated to Magdalen, in love and sisterhood. Rest in power.
We remember you Magdalen, and always will. We never met but you changed my life, you helped me find my way in the world as a woman and as a lesbian feminist. You gave me all the information I needed to stand tall and strong in myself and for what I believe in. My life has blossomed because of what you gave to us. How can I ever thank you enough?
You will forever go down in history as instrumental to this wave of the feminist movement. You will be remembered long after us. I know thousands upon thousands of women spoke out because of you – what a trailblazer you are. I wish I could be there to celebrate your life, but circumstances make it inaccessible to me. A toast to you Magdalen, may your family beam with pride, love from Sofia.
Sofia, ReSisters Admin and feminist sister XX
You burned and shone so brightly and for too short a time. Go gently, wonderful woman xx
Magdalen – your star will always shine. You are our Queen, always and forever. Xx
Thank you for being such an amazing example of bravery and badassery. You made the world a better place for being in it.
Magdalen – a star in the firmament of amazing women. Your gentle humour and honesty courageously spoken was inspired and inspiring and we were honoured and privileged to know you, albeit for such a short time.
Your family grieve the loss of a daughter and sister, but we grieve too – for the world is a lesser place without you in it. Rest in Peace brave and beautiful woman.
My fave video is this one:
Just thank you Magdalen. I won’t ever forget what you have done for women and for me.
Magdalen – wit, warmth and bravery were woven into everything you said. You have inspired so many women and girls your work will live on and grow. Thank you.’
Magdalen I am so sad I will never get to meet and get to know you. You were an incredible, intelligent, brave, kind, funny, sassy force of nature. When I first joined radical feminist groups, your name came up more than any other, you have changed so many women’s lives. God bless you for living your life in an unapologetically authentic way and making the world a better place through it.
From a lesbian follower and fan of your channel, rest in power sister.
Sending loads of love and admiration.
A warrior princess whose memory will be mourned and cherished by all those who knew her and many who didn’t.
Dear tiny Amazon.
A whole community mourns you but, in linking arms, we gain strength and rise again as one. Although we carry you in our hearts, we do it not for you but for ourselves, for our children and for our future. Thanks for reminding us that we matter and must fight back. In sisterhood, always.
Cathy Anne Turner
Magdalene will always be remembered as the powerful lesbian Feminist who inspired and motivated.
Dearest Magdalen, thank you so much for your bravery as an activist and in how you lived your life. You made it look easy and you made us realise we could stand up for ourselves too. That once we did it, we’d get a taste for it and we would get better and better. You connected us to our sisters and were a loud and eloquent voice for lesbians. You helped to radicalise me, and my immediate family! I miss you daily but I am so grateful that you were here with us, even briefly. You made such an impact.
Heartfelt love, blessings and a huge thank you for the inspiration.
I’m crying once more for the loss of a beautiful young woman I never met who opened my eyes to the need to stand up and fight back. Her loss to the world is palpable. Go well, Magdalen – well will try to honour your memory and your struggle.
Thanks for the honesty, inspiration and belly laughs from the other side of the world Magdalen.
Much love to her loved ones.
Gone far too soon. One of the inspirational faces of modern feminism and a teller of absolute truth. I hope that you can rest knowing that where there was only one Berns, as a result of your influence there will be more and more women beginning to resist.
Magdalen Berns You were an inspiration to me and I recommended your videos to others who were concerned about the whole sorry transgender issue. You explained everything simply (and charismatically) with wit and passion. Thank you Magdalen. I am 74 and a straight ageing hippy – never believed in marriage and here I find myself today spending most of my time demonstrating, signing petitions arguing and still fighting for women’s rights in 2019. I will not stop. I will not give up and lie down peacefully. I will think of your courage and I will be carrying on the fight to my dying breath. Much love Sister xxx
Magdalen,you were,and will forever be, an inspiration to girls and women,you showed us how to be strong and how to stand up for ourselves.With your warmth and your humour you reminded lesbians to always stand up for ourselves and each other.We will miss you,but will never forget you.
Magdalen, thank you for your wit, your wisdom, your bravery and your no nonsense approach to defending the rights of girls, women and lesbians.
We salute you warrior.
Your example thrives in all of us.
My deepest condolences to those who knew and loved you most.
Magdalene was a shining light of pure reason and heart. She saw with Inanna’s eyes and channeled Boudica’s energy into my youtube feed. I’ll miss her spirit and her voice. #RIPMagdalenBerns #BeBrave
Courageous, funny, intelligent, a brilliant voice, much loved, just wonderful. Sorely missed. A heroine, forever in our hearts. Rest peacefully. Xxxx
Someone once told Magdalen that they were afraid to share her videos and speak out but that they were grateful for her work. Magdalen, with all her usual tact, replied: “I’m not your fucking martyr.””
‘I’m not your fucking martyr’ — Magdalen Berns –
warrior sister speaker of wisdom
the world in its folly
needs to hear.
though you must have been afraid
in the face of their threats their blows
their unrelenting slander
never for a minute
did you think of surrender
unflinchingly you stood your ground
beautiful spirit your eyes spoke
a kindness that tempered
by your words your passion
your stubborn resilience you
taught us to relish the fight
now it is right there should be a lull
an interlude for tears
you left us your words
your template for courage
you showed us all how it’s done
but after after after the mourning
then comes the time
for right action
you were never the stuff
that martyrs are made of —
because you loved life
I will speak out.
A trail has been blazed. Thank you and may your light continue to shine in the hearts of the people who love you.
A woman for these times. Worthy of love and respect. Thank you sweet, funny, fierce Magdalen
Magdalen Berns’ will be forever loved and remembered for her sharp mind, wit and courage to speak truth to power. Her fearless spirit lives on in the women whom she inspired to stand up and speak out for the rights of women and girls everywhere.
Currently banned on FB for an International Forced Pronoun Day meme, still I wanted to express my deep sorrow at Magdalen’s passing to her family and friends. Her loss has already reverberated throughout the feminist community. News of her death has brought many new faces out of the shadows. I keep seeing comments like, “Just watched her videos, so great!” People are watching and sharing and spreading info. It may not be much comfort to her loved ones, hopefully it helps some. Pax Magdalen Berns. We’re doing our best to keep your fire burning!
Her words changed my life and gave me courage. I’ll be forever grateful.
Much love to Magdalen and all her loved ones. So much gratitude for her life and her work! May her name and her truth live on forever!!!
What a woman you were! Your work will continue and grow. I can only say thank you.
Your bravery will astound me eternally. We will always say your name.
Magdalen, you are a star. I am blessed to have lived in your time and to have known you, all the way from Richmond, Virginia, USA. I will try to live up to you.
Magdalen, watching your videos and reading your words is making me braver every day, to stand up to opression. Thank you for your intelligence, your wit, and your courage, which reached so many like me, who never even met you, but will never forget you. Xxx
Rest in peace bright star, brave warrior. And thank you xxxxx
What a woman. What a great loss. Thank you for having the courage to speak up with such clarity and humour.
It was a dismay to some that Magdalen Berns was no shrinking violet.
Let it be known today, sisters, that each of are also #noshrinkingviolet
I wish you were here with us
.We will continue the fight. And always be brave.
Thank you for everything Magdalen.