CBE's Egalitarian Church Directory
CBE keeps a directory of egalitarian churches. These churches are either members of CBE or have been recommended to us, but please note that inclusion in our directory does not constitute endorsement.
Our directory is not an exhaustive list of all egalitarian churches; it includes only churches that have been recommended to us for inclusion.
To find out if any of these churches are in your area, view the PDF of the church directory.
If our directory has nothing in your area, here are a few suggestions:
Search the web or your local yellow pages for churches within a comfortable commuting distance. When possible, read their statement of faith or look to see if they have a statement on women in ministry. Try visiting the church’s website and checking out their contact page to see if any women serve on the pastoral team or the elder board. You may also want to read about the church’s men’s and women’s ministries; check to see if they outline any statements about gender roles.
Consider visiting the websites of the denominations listed below. While individual congregations within denominations may vary greatly and may not all agree with CBE's Statement of Faith, these groups are known to give women access to leadership positions. They include:
- American Baptist
- The Anglican Communion
- Assemblies of God
- Church of the Brethren
- Church of the Foursquare
- Church of the Nazarene
- Cooperative Baptist Fellowship
- Christian Reformed Church
- Disciples of Christ
- Episcopal Church in the USA
- Evangelical Covenant
- Evangelical Lutheran Churches of America (ELCA)
- Free Methodists
- Grace Communion International
- Mennonite Church of the USA
- The Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA)
- The Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC)
- Reformed Church in America
- Salvation Army
- United Methodists
- Vineyard Fellowship
If you are interested in a particular church, visit the church office and ask for a copy of the church constitution. It often will indicate who can run for offices and how officers are chosen. If it looks promising, interview the pastor or a staff member and explain that you are looking for a church home where you and your family will feel comfortable and welcome. You might ask some of the following questions, but be sure to avoid sounding confrontational—rarely a helpful practice. Consider the visit an effort to gain new friends! Here are a few questions you might want to ask:
- Are there women on the elder board or the decision-making board that determines church policy?
- Do they have women on staff? If so, in what positions?
- Do they have a woman as pastor? Have they ever had a woman as pastor?
- Do women preach often?
- Does the church have an official position on authority in the home and church?
- Do they (or have they) taught classes on gender in the last five years? If so, what books do/did they use?
- What Bible translation do they use in their pews?
- Is the church familiar with the ministry of CBE?
- Provide the church with a copy of CBE's statement "Men, Women, and Biblical Equality" for their consideration. This document has been adopted by numerous churches around the world.
Is Your Church Egalitarian?
We depend on recommendations from our members and supporters to keep this directory growing and up-to-date. If you know of egalitarian churches in your area that share CBE's values, please contact us and let us know. We'd love to add them to our directory. Also feel free to let us know if you notice any mistakes or out of date information in our directory.
And while you're at it, consider giving your church a CBE membership! CBE church members receive many resources that help build a biblical understanding of gift-based ministry, and your support through membership helps sustain our ministry. Please join us!