2022 marked the sixth year of the annual CBE Writing Contest. We received many incredible entries. After carefully considering each entry, we are excited to introduce you to the twenty award-winning authors—five top winners and fifteen honorable mentions.
These authors bring a great variety of perspectives to our conversations on women’s biblical equality. From biblical interpretation principles for everyday readers to reflections on marriage and singleness as egalitarians and so much more, we cannot wait to share each article with you over the coming months.
Our sincere thanks to all the gifted writers who entered. We had so many new writers this year—it takes great courage to try something new. Thank you for writing with vulnerable, honest hearts. We applaud your commitment to healing women’s inequalities in the home, church, and world. Thank you for calling attention to shortcomings and praising successes. You make us better, and we honor you for it.
We’ll be publishing the contest winners and honorable mentions on our website in the coming months. For now, keep reading to meet each of the award-winning authors!
Congratulations to the Top 5 Winners! (In Alphabetical Order)
Mikaela Bell was born and raised in Arizona, but she now lives in France with her husband and six-month-old son. She works as an editor and is studying nutrition. In her spare time she enjoys reading, hiking, cooking, and of course, writing!
What You Risk by Reading a Text Without Context
Amanda K. Fowler
Amanda K. Fowler is a full-time church staff member at a multisite church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. A graduate of Fuller Seminary, she enjoys house projects, flipping thrift store finds, and being a professional aunt.
Neil Rees and his wife, Lynn, following ten years in the UK leading their sending church, have just returned to ministry in Spain, where they previously lived for twenty-seven years. This included eight years when Neil was international director of their mission agency, World Horizons.
The Gospel According to Zeffirelli
Xiaorui Wang has a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering and works in IT consulting. She enjoys traveling and exploring cities, planning events for her company, serving the Metro DC community through various ministries, learning Urdu, writing, and devouring books on theology, history, and social justice.
The Scrupulous Pursuit of Biblical Womanhood
Emma Yeager is a student of theology at the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, Illinois. Her academic interests include intersecting historical theology with modern constructive theology and gender-related issues. You can find her reading anything from the Coptic desert tradition to late medieval monasticism and asceticism. She also runs a newsletter on Substack titled, “Give me a Word.”
“The Serpent Has Suffocated in a Woman”: Eve and Mary in the Liturgical Songs of Hildegard of Bingen
Congratulations to the 15 Honorable Mentions (In Alphabetical Order)
Kara Angus is an avid runner, reader, and writer living in West Virginia with her husband and four children. She is passionate about women claiming their voices and having a platform to declare their love for the God who always and forever loves them back.
Imago Dei Women? Let’s Try to Really Understand What Genesis 1–3 Means for Women
Lorri E. Baldwin
Lorri E. Baldwin is an ordained elder of twenty-five years. She has been a youth pastor, leader of the children’s and youth ministries; led family life, missions, and worship arts departments; and led the liturgical dance ministry of Progressive Community Church. She has led young adult and women’s Bible studies. In the late 1990s, she was a clergy/missionary for PC(USA) in Africa as the advisor of the women and children’s department. She is a devotional writer for Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Illinois. Currently, she is creating a women in the Bible study series.
Why It’s Important for Women to Share Their Stories
Adam Benner was raised in fundamentalist churches in the northeastern US. Attending an Anabaptist university, serving as a missionary in Asia, and marrying his Australian partner, Renee, helped to reverse his views on women in the church. He now works as a primary school teacher in Melbourne.
Katy Blevins Calabrese
Katy Blevins Calabrese (seasonofkaty.com) is a strategic consultant serving faith-based business owners actively working to integrate work and worship to build structurally sound businesses fueled by well-loved teams. Returning to school after a twenty-year hiatus, Katy is now pursuing her diploma in ministry leadership at Ascent College.
Amy J. Chase
Amy J. Chase, PhD, is assistant professor of biblical studies (Old Testament) at Carey Theological College, Vancouver, BC. Her first book, The Proverbial Woman: Class, Gender, and Power in Hebrew Poetry (Fortress Press 2023), supplies a narrative and contextual interpretation of Proverbs 31.
Liz Cooledge Jenkins
Liz Cooledge Jenkins is a writer, preacher, chaplain, and former college campus minister whose work has appeared in Sojourners, Red Letter Christians, Feminism and Religion, and Christians for Social Action. She blogs regularly at lizcooledgejenkins.com and can be found on IG @lizcoolj and @postevangelicalprayers.
Robin Gallaher Branch
Robin Gallaher Branch holds a PhD in Hebrew Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. She won a Fulbright Fellowship to South Africa (2002–2003) and holds a research position at North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa. She serves as an adjunct professor at Christian Brothers University, Memphis, Tennessee.
The Egalitarian Relationship of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba
Rachel Larsen lives in New York City and works as a writer and editor for Chosen People Ministries. She studies historical theology at Dallas Theological Seminary. Her research interests include Bible teaching, theology, and Jewish history. When not writing or studying, she enjoys reading, drinking tea, and swimming.
James MacKenzie is a retired anatomic pathologist who lives in the north of England. He has been a lay preacher for many years and, together with his wife, Florence, is a member of his church’s preaching team. They also partner in the online ministry, Equipped for Living.
Hannele Ottschofski is a native of Finland and has spent most of her life in Germany married to a pastor. She has served her church as a writer, educator, editor, conference speaker, church elder, and translator. She has written a book, Tired of Waiting, Women in Church and Society, available through Amazon.com.
Katie Pezzutto is passionate about helping Christian women find their voice. She is a second-year masters student at Acadia Divinity College. Her passion for egalitarianism is further showcased in her poetry and fiction.
Michelle Rayburn is the host of the Life Repurposed podcast and is passionate about helping others discover hope in the trashy stuff of life. Her books include Classic Marriage: Staying in Love as Your Odometer Climbs and The Repurposed and Upcycled Life. She has a master’s in ministry leadership. Find her at michellerayburn.com.
Courage to Unsubscribe from Patriarchal Beliefs
Bill Rudd is mostly retired after fifty-five-plus years as a pastor. He has served as an adjunct seminary professor, consultant, and interim pastor. Bill and Gloria have four children, and eleven grand- and great-grandchildren. He is the author of Should Women Be Pastors and Leaders in Church?
Danijela was born and grew up in the Mediterranean city of Pula, now Croatia. Belonging to church community took her to many places—first to boarding high school, where she met her husband. Then together they lived, studied, and worked in France, Philippines, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, and Australia. Danijela is happily married to Branimir. Together they have two grown-up sons.
Aria M. Spears
Aria M. Spears is a minister, community-development enthusiast, and current copywriter. She is certified in gender-integrated programs and earned a Master of Nonprofit and Civic Leadership. She is also the author of The Community Mapping Journal: A Streamlined Monthly Process Designed to Find Your People & Forge Your Place.
Congratulations again to the 2022 CBE Writing Contest winners! Check out the winning articles from CBE’s 2021 contest here.
Photo by Abreen Hasan on Unsplash.