Welcome to CBE’s Library

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I was raised in a very traditional, Southern Baptist environment, but my parents, even though they were not taught egalitarian principles, sort of figured out that that was the way it had to be. My dad was not the kind of guy who threw his weight around or demanded obedience or had an idea that he was superior. That just wasn’t on his radar screen, so it was a healthy environment to be raised in. I think that’s why when I got married, [a complimentarian view of marriage] was not my viewpoint, even though I had not been taught from Scripture egalitarian principles.

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A father suddenly catches a glimpse of his daughter’s ministry gifts, gifts he was told women didn’t have. A mother, in tears, describes her vision of a different future for her daughters, one without restrictions and roles. And a parent grieves over the way young women are treated as less valuable, intelligent or competent than young men.

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Christy Fleming’s friends at Wheaton College have noticed she is different. From Minnesota, 20- year-old Christy loves theater, traveling and singing — nothing unusual there — but then she mentions soccer.

“I enjoy that it’s a physical sport,” Christy says, adding that it’s in the same insurance risk category as football. “You have to give it all you’ve got; you can’t hold back.”

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When we read an obituary in the newspaper, we see the visible side of a person’s life — his or her church or organization memberships and accomplishments in life. What we don’t read, however, is how the person touched others in some special way. I’d like to share how Mom spiritually touched the lives of my sister Wendy and me.

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When the news of my mom’s death spread throughout my congregation and the naval base in Port Hueneme, Calif., I began to learn about the kindred spirit that exists among women who have lost their mothers. These women cried with me and told me, “There is something deep that happens in our souls when a woman loses her mother.” All of these women talked of mothers who loved them and modeled that every woman can be all that God wants her to be.

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Coming of Age is a result of the Young Male Spirituality Project, a joint effort of Lutheran Men in Mission, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and Luther Seminary (St. Paul, Minn.) to find out why young men are staying away from the church in droves, a pattern that surveys are showing is increasingly alarming.

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The struggles of Christian women with sexuality, food, and their bodies reflect the Church’s historic ambivalence towards the body—particularly the female body. The embodiment of God in the Incarnation, Jesus’ embrace of lepers, prostitutes, and women, and Jesus’ bodily resurrection establish a radical foundation of body affirmation. Yet the history of the Church demonstrates a decidedly negative view of the body and sexuality. 

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Imagine yourself a teenage girl, strolling through your local Christian book store, when a small book that sounds too good to be true catches your eye. Someone actually wrote a book that claims to expose the workings of teenage guys? “It’s the inside scoop you’ve been waiting for! You’ll come to not only understand him, but also know what he might really be thinking about you,” the back cover reads. 

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