C. S. Lewis argued against women as priests in his 1948 essay, “Priestesses in the Church?” His reasoning was that a female priest could not adequately represent a male God. Winslow examines this reasoning and finds it lacking.
Catherine Kroeger, the founding president of CBE, stated, “although women had made forays into the field of biblical interpretation, it was to be Katharine Bushnell who would bring out the heavy artillery.”
For the first time in modern history, God is placing women in strategic positions of influence and leadership within the church, public, corporate, charity, and voluntary sectors, in unprecedented numbers. Women are called to flourish in these arenas. However, there are significant external and internal issues that hinder women in leadership in unique ways.
Nearly 50% of the US workforce are women, working mainly in workplaces designed by and for men. Disadvantages in the workplace cut across secular and Christian organizations, disadvantaging women from enjoying meaningful work and motherhood, advancement in careers, and ultimately living out their God-given gifts and talents. Many of these disadvantages can be tracked down to deeply-held beliefs about women, work, and leadership, beliefs that Jesus sought to dissolve. This workshop explores the mutual prosperity of men and women in organizations when women succeed at work and gain a seat around the table.
The epidemic of women’s unpaid work is a serious problem and it’s one that should concern us as Christians. Whether by implication, necessity, or demand, women aren’t being credited or compensated for their work. They are often taken less seriously as professionals and expected to take sole responsibility for housework and other traditionally feminine kinds of work. Not all labor—such as household work—is the kind of work for which we give and receive a paycheck. But it remains that for much of history, patriarchy has ensured that all of women’s work—official and unofficial and paid and unpaid—is seen as less than, and that women’s labor can be taken for granted.
If we believe that women (and people of color) are created equally in the image of an ineffable God—and if we long to know that God more fully—shouldn't we be actively pursuing their voices and perspectives?
She Preached the Word is a landmark study of women's ordination in contemporary American congregations. Accessible to scholars and general readers alike, it is a timely and important contribution to our understanding of the intersection of gender, religion, and politics in contemporary American society.