Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Still fussin' over women in the ministry

Jeremy Smith's blog "Hacking Christianity" had an interesting post "Silly don't you know? The Spirit gives you wings! It discusses the Episcopal Church in America having a female presiding bishop and the Church of England voting to approve female bishop's. (What is the world coming to!) There was a quote from the Telegraph (UK newspaper) from a supporter of the decision:
A couple of hours ago, the Church of England decisively severed itself from its Catholic roots. By voting to ordain women bishops without significant safeguards for traditionalists, it reasserted its identity as a Protestant Church. Whether it will be a liberal or conservative Protestant denomination remains to be seen. But any hope of unity with Rome and the Orthodox has gone forever.
The gist of the rest of the post is that we are working too hard to hold on to our roots when the Spirit gives us wings (who needs Red Bull!) I have a bit of a different take.

We are not trying to hold onto roots but rules. The founder of Christianity, the Christ himself, included women and many other marginalized that the religious powers-that-be of the day excluded. Once the Christians were no longer persecuted and became a church of the state, the religious once again fell into the same ways of their predecessors and excluded women and other marginals.

These are not roots but arbitrary rules. Jesus had no problems breaking every arbitrary rule he came up against.

Women have heard God speaking to them always. Why cannot they not also hear the call to ordained ministry, including being bishop, that their male counterparts hear.

What do you think?

1 comment:

Rev. Jeremy Smith said...

I think, as usual, your take on current events is more elegant than mine. I just come up with clever titles and steal slogans from red bull. ;-)

You are right that prohibitions against women are only three-quarters of the way down our roots, but when you get to the very tip and the very community Jesus interacted with, you've got plenty of women and marginalized in positions of authority.

Thanks for reminding us that we have firm foundation in the inclusive nature of Christ!