Women Bishops (and UMC Schism)

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Women Bishops (and UMC Schism)

Post by darinhouston » Wed Jan 15, 2020 9:44 am

I'm surprised we haven't had a post about the UMC schism on LGBTQ yet. I may start one, but in that context (as a member of a UMC church) I've been looking at the various factions driving the various "plans forward" and "separation proposals" and that sort of thing leading up to the General Conference in a couple of months. One of the groups driving the latest proposal for the so-called "Traditionalists" is from a group called the "Wesleyan Covenant Association." I had never heard of them before and I was looking at their arguments against LGBTQ inclusion and was surprised to see that they ordained women in ministry while denying LGBTQ. It strikes me that the arguments they use in support of women in ministry work against them in the LGBTQ context (contextualizing Paul's clear teachings and also elevating the positive examples Paul gives of women leaders). So, this post is not about the schism or the WCA, but first to discuss the issue of women in leadership specifically and then whether and to what extent the WCA arguments for women bishops conflict with the traditional position on LGBTQ. That is, can you reasonably maintain restricting LGBTQ while permitting women in the bishopric? (baptism and marriage being separate issues).

Steve has written a short piece on women in leadership and as one of the positions stated
Steve wrote:"It is the assertion of the so-called “biblical feminists” and “radical egalitarians” in the church that these obstacles [Paul's statements in 1 Timothy] can indeed be removed (along with the related obstacles posed by 1 Cor.11 and 14). Since some of these people are theologically trained, and present arguments that sound scholarly (read: “true”), it is necessary to look at these claims very carefully in order to decide whether Paul’s instructions in this passage are to be applied in our modern selection of pastors and bishops or not."
But, Steve did not elaborate or go on to address those arguments. For background, WCA's positions are laid out here as an example.

https://wesleyancovenant.org/33-blog/#1 ... 1edfd-1fda
Women In Ministry
Biblical Women and the Spread of the Gospel - https://wesleyancovenant.org/2018/08/22 ... he-gospel/
Women in Recent Church History - https://wesleyancovenant.org/2018/08/29 ... h-history/
Making the Most of Women in Leadership - https://wesleyancovenant.org/2018/09/05 ... eadership/
Women as Christian Leaders, Preachers and Teachers - https://wesleyancovenant.org/2018/02/01 ... -teachers/

They lean heavily on arguments presented well by a woman teacher who I like very much as a teacher/historian -- Sarah Richter. In this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpmtq-ZsqC4, she does a very good job and has a very learned and persuasive style. But, if you take each of her stated propositions and consider them (as Steve suggests above), they are riddled with presumptions and assumed assertions which are quite debatable (or even unsupported).

I would love to hear your substantive responses to the arguments supporting women in ministry and also discussion of how one can hold both positions and still call themselves "Traditional."

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