Should Females Be Pastors?
by Vicki GRECH
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What an absurd suggestion it is to question whether or not women should be pastors. Why shouldn’t women be pastors? Is there anything about men that makes them superior in this vocation or for that matter any other? I am quite astounded by this suggestion that people in our world, supposedly so advanced from the dark ages, would even raise such a question.
Women have been ministering since the dawn of time in a variety of fields under the one heading of; “mother”. The craft of motherhood and homecare simultaneously requires and encompasses far more and greater skill and ability than that of any other vocation I know of. Therefore, this question seems rather little more than a “mere-male” joke in down in the local pub.
The word “pastor” defined in the dictionary means -
- Christian minister: a Christian minister or priest in charge of a congregation
- spiritual adviser: somebody who is not a minister or priest but who gives spiritual advice to a group of people
Encarta World English Dictionary
The words “Christian Ministry” is defined as - A ministry, in Christianity, is an activity carried out by Christians to express or spread their faith – Wikipedia
Christian Ministry in essence when all the paraphernalia is removed; is simply the ability to “teach” the word of God and nurture the soul of those they teach. Of course it would also encompass many and varied administrative duties; however, women in general have proved beyond doubt they multi-task extremely well!
There really is and never has been any “valid” reason why the world at large and by majority has been “male dominated”. Since the dawn of time women have been oppressed, grossly controlled, exploited and abused by their male counter-parts. Women and their rightful place in society and the Church have been denied to them by sheer brute force applied by males in securing their position, above that of women. If anything, the abuse of women and denying them an equal place in society and the Church is a display of anti-Christian behavior.
To the best of my knowledge, God had created Eve for company and as a “helper” to work “alongside”, (meaning equally), with Adam to achieve a common purpose. I don’t recall anything in Genesis or any other book of the Bible where God had said; “and Adam is a superior being than that of Eve”. Nor do I recall anywhere God forbid women to be actively involved in pastoral duties and/or care of others’. These laws I believe, just as Church Doctrine is the word of “man” not God. Religious Laws made up to suit a male dominated society, laws that offered little or no protection for women against abusive males, including those connected with the Church. For that matter, I don’t recall anywhere in the Bible, where God’s Word makes inferences to suggest women are of a lesser substance and/or intellect than that of men.
It is my belief, as supported by the Bible that women have an equal place in society and the world at large alongside of men, not in front, not behind, but parallel and equal all ways. It is time men put aside their ego and realized the fact that if anything women in general are better equipped and able in coping with life’s problems than they are. Perhaps this is why women have 40 more connectors in their brain than males!
Taking on a more “worldly” perspective, let us just take a look at the state of family life, society and the world at large just for a minute; that is all we will need to see the massive destruction a male dominated world has caused not only to the planet but to humanity overall. Many people will claim and argue – “oh, but we have advanced so much”! But really; have we? From what I see we are the only species of living creatures determined to render ourselves extinct! The modern-day so-called theologies of advancement are in my opinion a form of regression borne of obsessive greed and insanity.
As for the debate on whether or not women should be allowed to minister in whatever capacity, Clergy, Bishop, Priestess, Minister, Pastor or any other role-title of Christian Instruction, I would have thought the answer would be obvious for 3 reasons –
Firstly – as we see today, very few if any at all are any longer afraid to speak out about the abuse they have suffered at the hands of “male” so-called Godly men. These acts of abuse I believe show clearly the reason why males have seen fit to dominate over women and children and terrorizing them into submission and silence. (In saying this however; I am also aware that women such as Nuns of the Church are also responsible for a certain amount of abuse, but they are a minority group it seems).
Secondly – there is no evidence and there never has been; to suggest that women are not equipped as well as men in any way, manner, shape or form to provide Christian Instruction to any one person, group or larger organization such as a Congregation of the Church.
Thirdly – Christian Life according to the Bible is that of nurturing, kindness, generosity, care, love and compassion for each other and our environment. God entrusted the earth, women and children and all manner of life to man to provide and care for. This is why men are physically stronger than women; sadly they have abused their power and trust, using it more-so for all the wrong reasons. It doesn’t take an Einstein to see that males have failed miserably in their duties as guardians of the earth and all that inhabits it.
Perhaps it is time for men to put aside their ego and instead lift up their minds to God with regard to females working “alongside” them in whatever capacity they are suited to in working toward a common Christian cause. That cause being to educate people and provide quality Christian Instruction irrespective of race, gender or age. God did not close any door to any person who wanted to “ad-minister” Christian principles, theologies and values that are aligned of God’s Word found in the Holy Christian Bible.
Furthermore, it has been my experience of late to discover painfully through the course of my own studies there seem to be more contradictions in Church Doctrine compared to God’s Words found in the Bible than grains of sand found on a beach! Personally I believe it is time for a total upheaval and overhaul of the entire system of Ministry of all Faiths. In addition to this I have also discovered the difference between Christianity and Religion. The most profound difference being that; Christianity has the Bible, the Word of God, religion has the Doctrine, the word of man, and between the two, the gap is immensely wide and varied.
In conclusion – men and women can and should work together on common and equal ground with regard to the administration in whatever capacity of Christian Instruction. I have no doubt at all that God does not discriminate and welcomes any person into His Ministry of Christian Living, principles and values that shed light and love in the world.
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Vickie, I applaud your views on this subject. For the hard core Christian community, I suggest you use, the very available and amply provided texts from Scripture that affirm that women are acceptable for the position of "ministers of the Cloth." For instance, Phillip the Evangelist had 4 daughters that prophesied, or "preached," and Paul stayed in their home with them at times. Apparently, he did not disapprove. I feel that the text used to discredit women from "authoritative positions," is misapplied, for Paul says clearly that he is not speaking of marriages but of Christ and the Church. He was using an analogy. "Women are not to usurp authority over men," well what male pushes a woman around with God's approval? Also, the fact that in speaking of the relationship in a home between a husband and wife, that is NOT the gathering of the Church, where there is NO male, and NO female, and no Greek, and no Roman, and no bond and no free, because "in the Spirit," there are none of those things present. I think your article is well written, but then I am more a reader than a writer; however, I'd like to switch that.