An important nerve has clearly been struck. And yesterday the conversation jumped up a notch.
Nearly three weeks ago, I was greatly moved by a post by Jeromy at A Mending Shift, talking about the suppression of women within the church, the ongoing wound, and the need for healing.
So I wrote “Why the Heart of Every Man Should Be Breaking“–which, in two weeks’ time, already has all appearances of becoming the most-read blog post I’ve ever written (which tells me just how deeply significant this particular topic is to people).
From there, it seems to have gone all over the place, almost like a spontaneous synchroblog. Here are a few others who have either added to the discussion or linked to it (and forgive me if I miss any):
Kim: Rebel Without a Clue
Reina: Women and Oppression
Heidi: Who’s Image Are We Created In?
The Wounded Image of God: Evangelical Lamentations on Gender by Bridget Jack Meyers
And now, Jonathan Brink has put feet to his convictions. He stepped up.
In his latest post, “Where Are the Women?” Jonathan talks about a new emerging network called the Origins Project. While Jonathan applauds the mission and the efforts of the three key churches involved in forming the project (and I agree), he also points out that there are six core leaders, including several nationally-known voices in the emergent movement–all male. While (in fairness) women hold several positions on creative and connecting teams–and while there is also apparently a broad racial mix among all the teams–on the leadership team, there is a stark absence of females.
Understandably, this has already stirred a flurry of discussion on Jonathan’s blog.
While I have a great respect for this effort, and for the leaders, some of whom have influenced me greatly by their writings…and while I make no claim to judge the heart intentions of these men…I have to applaud Jonathan for calling them out on this. Regardless if the exclusion of women was intentional or not, and for whatever reason…I think it’s of vital importance that the question was raised. Because as I said in my earlier post…it’s not enough for us to passively consent to the idea of women in leadership. If we take that stance, inevitably we will continue to overlook them, even without meaning to. Speaking out and questioning perceived inequities like these are the very things that raise our awareness of the problem. And, hopefully, inspire us to think differently…to change.
I urge you to read Jonathan’s post, and the comments. I believe he addresses the issue honorably and respectfully, but firmly. I commend him for standing up for our sisters, and for taking his own challenge seriously enough to act on it.
UPDATE: Jonathan has expanded the conversation in this followup post.