Women Who Preach

When we began our church tour, we wanted to be sure to include congregations that were a) not predominantly white and b) include women on the pastoral staff. The experiences have made us more sure that we want to make a home in such a church.

Sunday, we visited a Methodist church pastored by an African American woman. More on our visit later; for now I want to talk about our specific experience in this service in reference to the pastor.

The church is small, so the pastor greeted us at the door when we arrived. She's a gentle, dynamic woman who extended a very warm welcome and even chatted with us for a few minutes. I loved her sermon so much, both the content and the delivery. It moved me to tears. She preached the truth of God's provision and the reality of miracles, both large and small.

It made me grieve for women with pastoral gifts who have been excluded from church leadership simply because of their gender. This pastor does an amazing job and is clearly following God's calling as she shepherds and inspires her congregation.

In the words of Janet George in Still Side by Side: A Concise Explanation of Biblical Equality, "If we are to err, let us not err on the side of restricting the work of God. Let us encourage the entire body of Christ to exercise all the gifts, for the whole world. The needs are great, and God knows…everyone is needed!"

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