By: Beth Allison Barr
Men lead, women follow, the Bible says so: This is what evangelicals have believed - that the Bible dictates permanent and divinely ordained roles for men and women. But what if the Bible doesn't say so?
By: Beth Allison Barr
While Americans are becoming more comfortable with women in leadership roles and more understanding of the significant obstacles women face in the workplace, evangelicals lag behind.
By: Cliff Vaughn
Representing the best of the Baptist tradition, Ellen Di Giosia and First Baptist Church of Jefferson City, Tennessee, are the Baptist Center for Ethics' pick as Baptists of the Year for 2017.
By: Paul Beasley-Murray
A passage in 1 Corinthians is often used to justify a ban on women's ordination or on women preaching today, but it's flawed reasoning. No such ban exists in Scripture.
By: Eileen R. Campbell-Reed
The "confidence gap" is one factor that contributes to the shortfall of women serving as leaders in theological schools and churches, but it's a factor women can change, a seminary president said.
By: Molly T. Marshall
While complementarian theology maintains that women and men are essentially different, Deborah's story in Scripture doesn't fit this mold. Rather, she upends it with her leadership of God's people.
By: Kelly Moreland Jones
Tennessee Baptists burst into applause after voting to not seat members of First Baptist of Jefferson City for the convention's annual meeting. Their reaction teaches us three lessons and provides four responses.
By: Ircel Harrison
The Tennessee Baptist Convention has pulled the welcome mat from one of its member churches because the congregation called a woman to serve as their senior pastor.
By: Pam Durso
Martin Luther's challenge in 1517 reshaped the 16th-century Christian landscape and continues to influence Christian life today. Women were active in this new movement, yet their names aren't in the history books.
By: Beth Allison Barr
Despite the narrative from some quarters that female leadership in church is "disobeying the word of God," Baptist churches have allowed women to lead and preach. Case in point, First Baptist of Elm Mott, Texas.
By: Beth Allison Barr
Conservative evangelicals are often ignorant of the long history of female leaders and preachers in Christian past. The female preachers they do know about are often negative examples.
By: Roger Olson
Having women ministers is not evidence of a "liberal trend." Many conservative churches have accepted women in leadership roles. Christians who reject women ministers are usually quite inconsistent in practice.
By: Mitch Carnell
Women play major roles in the Bible, but the male-dominated church mainly marginalizes their importance, asserts the author of 'The Invisible Women.' Jesus, however, reverses this practice.
By: Kelly Moreland Jones
Even though God is described in ways as other than male in the Bible, you rarely hear texts preached or prayers addressed to anyone other than a male God. Is that a problem or an opportunity?
By: Carra Greer
Many Baptist churches fall short when it comes to addressing issues that affect women. Here are 6 ideas to help your church open its doors to women who need support, understanding and community.
By: Jerrod Hugenot
While some Baptists claim that women should not be in church leadership, especially pastoral ministry, the truth is that without their leadership and commitment, churches would not have much left.
By: Seth Vopat
It's hard enough to understand the reluctance by many to accept female pastors, but the inequality of women has consequences that reach well beyond the pulpit.
By: Joe LaGuardia
Even though some haven't welcomed women in ministry in recent years, women have been included in leadership in Baptist life since the 1600s. And they'll continue to bless the church for years to come.
By: Naomi King Walker
Qualified and called women ministers permeate every area of Baptist life, yet many still enjoy far fewer opportunities than their male counterparts. The attitudes of churches are evolving. Has yours?
From a disturbingly young age, every mirror culture can provide a woman tells her that it is the shape, size, look, feel, smell and taste of her body that gives her value. Even in church.
Moderate Baptists are making progress on accepting women as senior pastors, but it's painfully slow. Meanwhile, they lose gifted women who fulfill their calling in other churches.
Women serving in the ministry know some ceilings won't be broken in their lifetimes. Yet they can join together and beat upon the glass ceiling to make a million cracks.
Lottie Moon was one of the first single Baptist women to be appointed as a missionary – with the understanding she would be involved only in "women's work for women." She didn't listen.
While British Baptists' record on women in ministry is far from perfect, they have affirmed the ministry of women in every aspect of their life together – and have done so for a long time.
If the matter of women bishops remains unresolved and the conflict ratchets higher, is it possible that there could be a parting of the ways for the marriage of church and state in England?
An ecumenical Christian nonprofit is dedicated to helping women around the globe to fulfill their unique purpose, the group's executive director tells EthicsDaily.com.
Founded in 2001, Global Women's vision is of a world where every woman is empowered by God's love, valued by her community and equipped to fulfill her unique purpose.
"Baptist" used to mean freedom, tolerance and autonomy. Now it means bigotry and partisan politics. And that's why so many Southern Baptist churches need to change their names.
Folks who are the most vocal about "living under biblical authority" often rely on obscure verses to keep women from exercising their leadership gifts in the church. It betrays the gospel.
Long kept in the shadows by Baptist churches, women in ministry are moving into the spotlight. Participation in a program that highlights women in the pulpit has quadrupled in two years.
Lottie Moon, whose name and likeness are used by Southern Baptists to fuel fundraising efforts for foreign missions, was a "defiant pioneer" who saw no restrictions on women in ministry.
If something didn't work the way it should, Ethel would find out why and fix it. She was a formidable woman with strong opinions about everything. And you know what? She was right.
Lots of people will tell you how to preach. But Lillian Daniel, senior minister of First Congregational Church in Glen Ellyn, Ill., recently shared tips on how not to preach.
Although conservative pastors and husbands advocate for male domination, Jesus' words and actions about women in ministry are clear: He didn't restrict women.
For many women, Martha Stearns Marshall Month may be the only time they preach for the entire year. And for many church members, it may be the only time they hear a female preach God's word.
Open-minded Baptists say they are open to women in ministry in all levels of leadership, but the statistics suggest otherwise. What's at stake for this discrepancy?
(RNS) The Roman Catholic priest who faces expulsion from the priesthood for advocating for women to be ordained as priests is refusing to recant.
(RNS) A Roman Catholic priest who has campaigned for the ordination of women has been told he will be expelled if he does not publicly recant.
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (RNS) Decades ago, Daniel Parker would pretend to be a preacher, belting out sermons as he jumped up and down on his bed.
Even among individual Christians and churches that advocate for women in ministry, hierarchical thinking can subtly manifest itself as patriarchal attitudes of superiority.
NEW ORLEANS (RNS) The Rev. Roy Bourgeois now faces expulsion from his religious order and from the priesthood over his support for the ordination of women.
As a young woman in the civil rights movement, Prathia L. Hall was a barrier-breaking Baptist woman preacher, raising her fiery and focused voice in some of the movement's toughest battlegrounds.
Baptists have never had consistent criteria for ordaining deacons, ministers or pastors, but the perception of ordination for many of them has shifted from a recognition of servanthood to a position of authority and power.
The Georgia Baptist Convention has ousted a church from their ranks because the congregation has a woman as co-pastor. If the state's Baptists really have a problem, perhaps they should have voted God out.
LONDON (RNS) A bishop has triggered fury by likening the debate over allowing female bishops to the “serious threat” of warfare.
Why do many Baptist churches insist on unanimous recommendations from their pastor search committees? Many are insecure and don't want potential challenges to their recommendations on the church floor.
It's time for moderate Baptists who claim they support women pastors to quit paying lip service to the notion and actually call a woman. When will they be ready to give women a chance?
(RNS) Women have been ordained as priests in all 110 dioceses of the Episcopal Church.
Blazing the trail for women to serve in the ministry hasn't been easy, but the path has fewer rocks and ruts than it did years ago. For today's young women, the journey is a little smoother. And that makes it worth it.
(RNS) The Church of God has decided to permit women to serve on local church councils but they cannot be ordained as bishops.
Churches seem to be the most formidable institutional structures resistant to egalitarian roles for women. To reform it, God needs people to challenge the religious powers that be and become instruments of peace.
Men have long held senior leadership roles in the church and fulfilled the pastoral role. What continues to keep Baptists and some evangelicals from accepting women in Christian leadership, especially as pastors?
Some conservatives say it is God's intention that women should be "submissive" to men, but a Baptist woman from the early 1900s saw it differently when she proclaimed that women were created as equal to men.
The Rev. Janine Denomme, who devoted her life to the Catholic Church and had been ordained as a priest, died on May 17. That ordination was grounds to deny her a Roman Catholic burial at her local parish.
While there is a surplus of ministers wanting a shrinking pool of big-church jobs, many small churches have difficulty attracting a decent pastor. They could have an easier time if they didn't eliminate half the candidates.
Lepers. Orphans. HIV patients. Prisoners. The elderly. Marginalized youth. They are among the poorest of the poor in India. And Leena Lavanya forges her own path to minister to all of them.
Some Southern Baptists claim that preventing women from serving as pastors is defending the gospel. When did Jesus proclaim that the good news of the Kingdom of God is that women should not exercise authority over men?
When Baptist leaders explain how they can justify banning women preachers, they often shrug and say that's what God's word says. By selectively embracing the Bible literally, they are impeding God's working in our world.
The Georgia Baptist Convention is preparing to sever ties with a church that called a woman as co-pastor. Why doesn't the church break ties on its own? That may be easier to do, but something bigger is at stake.
In too many Baptist circles today, the calling of a woman to pastoral ministry is still denied or dismissed. Yet, in churches where the principle of the autonomy of the local church is truly cherished, miracles occur.
The last seven generations of the Cartledge family have been Baptists. And it all started because of a seemingly unfortunate incident and a woman preacher's spirited defense in 1770.
Baptists must treat each other with respect and civility even when there are disagreements over issues, an Oklahoma pastor and former U.S. President Jimmy Carter both urged.
It's not just the leaders of the male-dominated Southern Baptist Convention that stifle women. Those who disagree but remain silent are also culpable.
Christy McMillin-Goodwin, associate minister for education and missions at Oakland Baptist Church in Rock Hill, S.C., has been nominated as moderator-elect for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship.
Charged with being "racist" for a remark she made in 2001, Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor was simply acknowledging that perspective can be important. Like every other justice, her experiences inform her perspective.
Why are some Southern Baptist churches reluctant to use Baptist in their name? To the church-hunter who has already disavowed the denomination, it's like the joy from receiving a pretty package – until you see what's inside.
Carolyn Staley, minister of education at Pulaski Heights Baptist Church in Little Rock, Ark., has organized an Arkansas Chapter of Baptist Women in Ministry. Some of her members can't be named publicly.
Cheryl Allen is a senior pastor because she literally has gone where no man would go.
Over this past weekend, the most read article on Foxnews.com was entitled "Magazines Featuring Female Pastors Pulled From Shelves, 'Treated Like Pornography.'"
LifeWay Christian Stores reportedly pulled a Christian magazine from its racks because five smiling women on its cover are pastors.
During the Friday evening worship service at the CBF annual meeting in Memphis, the CBF director of missional church ministries began his presentation by saying, "I love church." He then invited the participants to repeat the phrase in unison. I'm not much into cheerleading, so I didn't open my mouth. I just couldn't bring myself to say the words. Let me tell you why.
What do Karen Armstrong, Kathleen Norris and Anne Rice have in common? Actually, they share several similarities. They are all white women born in the 1940s who have been heavily influenced by the Catholic tradition and are prolific and acclaimed English-language authors.
Despite the Southern Baptist Convention's declaration eight years ago that the Bible forbids women from serving as pastors, the ranks of ordained Baptist clergywomen in the South are growing faster than ever, according to a new report.
"I'm here today because nobody calls me 'chicken,'" guest preacher Michelle McClendon said in a sermon Feb. 3 at Second Baptist Church in Lubbock, Texas.
Baptist Women in Ministry is hoping to nearly double participation in a second annual day for women to preach in Baptist churches early next year.
While I grew up Baptist, I did not grow up American Baptist. Coming from outside 25 years ago, my perspective may be different from those who have always been here. They may not see or recognize the four treasures I have discovered in American Baptist life. Those treasures are very concrete practices, not abstract principles.