Thinking Anglicans

Men lead, women obey?

From Australia comes this report that:

There is a growing backlash against women being treated as equals in churches around Australia, with some women being pressured not to become priests. Barney Zwartz reports on the battle looming.

Read Men lead, women obey? from the Melbourne Age.

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Bill Dilworth
11 years ago

Without agreeing that any effort specifically to attract more men to church is necessarily sexist or anti-egalitarian, it’s distressing to see what I have come to see as American-style reactionary evangelicalism pop up overseas.

Pluralist
11 years ago

The interesting element here is how in mainstream Christianity there is increasingly a conservative – liberal theological divide that involves a gender divide. Women to be bishops, women as priests and in charge are being associated with the liberal end of the Church. The brunt of the frustration will be felt by the evangelical women, including moderate evangelicals as the pressure grows about which side they are on (as on, say, Fulcrum). But it does mean that the female headship issue could become another ‘presenting’ issue, a marker as to who is in the ascendant theologically.

Perry Butler
Perry Butler
11 years ago

It seems to me the C of E needs to clarify whether “male headship” is a doctrine OF the Church of England or simply a theological opinion legitimately held by members within the Church of England. In what sense, if any, did I when I made the Declaration of Assent as a priest/rector etc affirm that doctrine? I certainly didnt intend too, how many clergy did? If it is not a doctrine OF the Church of England, how far should it govern our thinking and actions as we move towards the consecration of women bishops? The Abps Pentecost Letter talks… Read more »

Pantycelyn
Pantycelyn
11 years ago

‘It seems to me the C of E needs to clarify whether “male headship” is a doctrine OF the Church of England or simply a theological opinion legitimately held by members..’

No, not a doctrine. An opinion held with no legitemacy whatsoever.

The apparent increase in obscurantism, fundamentalism and crazy notions is a matter for concern. As is the attempt to control and manipulate women.

Dennis
Dennis
11 years ago

It is distressing to see American style evangelicalism spread in other countries just as it is waning here. I remember friends in the UK in the early 90s express an interest in what they imagined evangelicalism to be about. I tried to warn them at the time. And now it is growing in the UK and Australia. Pity. One of the hard things for other Anglicans to understand about American Episcopalians is how many of us are converts / escapees from evangelical and authoritarian churches. One of the shocks for many of us is to see a version of Anglicanism… Read more »

drdanfee
drdanfee
11 years ago

The proof of doctrinal purities nearly always ends up revealed pretty clearly in real world/real church life behaviors. Surely the discernment test of believers/leaders who proclaim this ‘complementarity’ is how well or how poorly they treat/interact with talented-trained-gifted women in leadership, period.

As to that obvious track record, it is not so pure, shiny, and blemish-free as these (mostly) men complementarians like to claim. The equation, maleness=fistfights, is hardly a key to the kingdom of God. Or … contemplate, perhaps: Anglicanism=Fight Club. Bravo, punch.

JPM
JPM
11 years ago

The CoE seems to be undergoing a fundamentalist takeover.

Non-fundamentalist members of that church would do well to study the history of the takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention in the U.S. in the late 70s-early 80s.

karen macqueen+
karen macqueen+
11 years ago

Driscoll of the Mars Hill Church complains about the “chickification” of men in the Christian churches. Holy Mother of God! It might as well be the Planet Mars Church. What is wrong with this man and others like him? Insecure, a little? I certainly would not want to be his “chick.” No chance really. I lack the huge hair, double false eyelashes and tons of makeup that seems to be the basic fashion statement for the pastor’s “chick” in these churches. And some Anglicans complain about gay people in the Church? At least they usually know how to dress. And… Read more »

Chris Smith
Chris Smith
11 years ago

I think there is also another factor that plays into the current spread of Catholic and Protestant Fundamentalism and that is the global economic depression that is touching hundreds of millions of people as they either lose their employment or are on the verge of seeing their means of income disappear. Fascism spread mightily in the 1930’s after similar conditions came into play. The distribution of wealth will become a front burner issue over the next months and years. This will be world-wide. It may be more difficult for the right wing money sources to continue supplying the fundamentalist churches,… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Father Ron Smith
11 years ago

“RIDLEY College principal Peter Adam, a complementarian, believes that Christians can hold either view with a clear conscience. He concedes that the issue has become a source of tension among students, but so are other matters, such as infant baptism.” – Barney Swartz, The Melbourne Age – The fact that the issues of women clergy and infant baptism are linked together as equivalent options for serious discussion at Ridley College in Melbourne is symptomatic of the fundamentalism of theological teaching at Ridley. If Infant Baptism is seen as an optional extra – or even dispensible to some theologs – then… Read more »

Pantycelyn
Pantycelyn
11 years ago

Infant baptism is non-negotiable in the Church of England.

Erika Baker
Erika Baker
11 years ago

“People would laugh, she says, if anyone suggested women should not be MPs, judges or chief executives. Family and church are the only remaining spheres where these evangelicals can be influential.”

So why don’t churchgoers and especially women not simply laugh out loud and refuse to give this movement houseroom?

Cheryl Va.
11 years ago

Don’t think Australia (parts) are “following”. Forces from within the Sydney Diocese played a pivotal role in setting up the alternative church in South Africa in 1988. They regularly pray and intervene to hinder and overturn liberal reforms, women being only one of several things. One leader seriously told me a few years ago that it was an incorrect reading of scripture to believe that Jesus was going to about 1000 years of peace for this planet and its occupants, all but the “saved” were slated for obliteration after much suffering. Sorry, but those elements have simply made themselves irrelevant… Read more »

evensongjunkie
evensongjunkie
11 years ago

Chris Smith, you have hit the head of the nail! Absolutely bang-on! During the latest recession here in Ohio, the only new buildings I saw being erected were “mega-churches” outside of our many small towns. Frightening.

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