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As we celebrate students and young egalitarian leaders in this issue of Mutuality, we also recognize the important work of mentors in their lives. Therefore, please join us in honoring one of CBE’s great mentors, who led CBE’s ministry with wisdom and boldness for many years. Read more
A black man taught me what it means to be civilized. He said that the meaning of civilization could be communicated in one word: Welcome. The world places conditions on who may be welcomed, and even citizens of the most “civilized” nations welcome some and struggle to tolerate others. But the church is called to welcome all, not because of any system of classification or merit, but “because God has welcomed them” (Rom. 14:1ff; 15:7).  Read more
Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, I came to the tomb. I came alone in that time before dawn, when fear and doubt get the best of us, and when God seems farthest away. I came to make closure, like so many of us have had to do in our lives. I came to say goodbye and to let go.  Read more
It first came up in my theology class. My professor read aloud 1 Timothy 2:11–12 (for some reason he failed to read the verses above or below) and claimed that there was no solid evidence that this verse was intended only for a particular cultural context. Instead, it was applicable to all churches at all times. I then asked about women who feel that preaching is their spiritual gift, women who feel a deep desire to be pastors. He nodded his head at me and asserted, “Well, that is why it is important to understand spiritual gifts as really just roles in the church we participate in. With this understanding, we can see that women simply have different roles in the church.” Read more
Growing up in the church, “I didn’t sense that women were oppressed,” author and seminary professor Cleophus J. LaRue admitted. The Baptist church he attended was made up of 75% women, and they served in many leadership positions. Women taught Sunday school and headed up the missionary society and Baptist training union. LaRue even learned the foundations of Christian faith from a woman in his church who was the matron of the usher board on which he served. He realized these women were gifted individuals, and his exposure to earnest women doing the work of the Lord stayed with him. But he understood and accepted that they could not ascend to the pulpit; in the congregation where he came to faith, it was known to be absolutely unacceptable for a woman to claim that she had been called by God to preach.   Read more
“Harm, fairness, community (or group loyalty), authority and purity…these are the primary colors of our moral sense. Not only do they keep reappearing in cross-cultural surveys, but each one tugs on the moral intuitions of people in our own culture.”* * Quoted from “The Moral Instinct” by Peter Singer, New York Times, 2006. Read more
I first started getting crowns at prayer retreats when I was far too old for them—that is, my freshman year of college. All of a sudden, it seemed that paper crowns were everywhere in the Christian community, distributed to women with a discussion about how we are all princesses. It was a candy-coated, conviction-free reminder I got every time I walked into a women’s discipleship group, youth ministry, or Christian bookstore—you are a princess because your Father is a king. Read more
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.  Read more
Could Mary have refused, when it was offered her, left her fingers open around the gift, releasing the weight of it from the palm of her hand? Read more
As with Mary, it was the sound of angel wings that broke the silence. My ears rung with gold, I felt fire sprouting up from the dun earth.   Read more