Making A Place At The Table

Rev. Debra Griffis-Woodberry, Pinnacle Associate
When I graduated from college, all I really wanted to do was follow Jesus. For me to follow Jesus fully, I had to be an ordained “preacher”. That was God’s call for me. God’s call was loud and clear. As a young woman, I tried, but could not shake loose from it. God created me stubborn and stoic enough that recently I retired after 40 years of serving God as an ordained “preacher”. I am grateful for courageous support from men and women all along the way.

Over the years, ordained women searched not for special privilege but simply an equal place at the table. Many men and women have tried to live genuinely in the truth of Galatians 3:28 which declares we are all one in Christ; there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave or free, male or female. I have experienced many blessed times of working beside men in true partnership as ministry goals were achieved. Likewise, I like many other women have experienced closed doors, mean words, and blatant exclusion.

“Me too” and “Times Up” and “the Annual Women’s March” expose the reality that 18 years into the 21st Century we are still dealing with inequities for women. We see it in the church as well as culture. I wish that we could talk about something else but perhaps it is time to discuss this again. While I wish that this conversation was not necessary, I offer some ‘Conversation starters’”

Has the frequent news of sexual misconduct in the workplace of celebrities and elected officials affected your ministry?

Is ministry nuanced differently for women?

Why do people tend to say “Sally is a female pastor” but don’t say, “Sam is a male pastor”?

Women report that they will make a suggestion in a meeting and it is ignored, then when a male counterpart says the same thing it is recognized as a great contribution.

Is there compensation inequity in your denomination or church?

Is it true that women have to do twice as good a job as men to get half of the recognition?

How can women affirm supportive brothers and speak to the injustices they experience?

What can supportive men say or do to bear the light of Christ in this matter?

Will all of the news of misconduct set us back in the good progress we have made in shared leadership in some parts of the Body of Christ?

Our work as followers of Jesus is to help in making the Kingdom of God realized on earth as it is in heaven. May it be so for all of God’s children.

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You may want to take in Debra’s coming webinar on this topic:
Carving a Place at the Table for Ordained Women
January 25 - 10 AM Eastern, 1 Hour
Tuition $20, FREE To Pinnacle Network Partners
Register Here: http://www.pinnlead.com/webinars.html
Helen