By Phyllis Zagano at the National Catholic Register

zaganoPlease answer in 750 words or fewer: What is the deal with men’s violence against women?

I do not get it. Do you? It seems there is an epidemic of horrendous acts against women around the world.

This past fall in Pakistan, a man shot 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai in the head. She had blogged for the BBC about life under the Taliban. The world’s media eye monitored her medical treatment in England. She’s won awards. They’re naming a girls’ school after her. She is still recovering.

That was bad. This is worse. In India in mid-December, six men raped and sodomized a 23-year-old female physiotherapy student. On a bus. With a metal rod.

They flew her to Singapore and kept her alive for two weeks until she died.

In Pakistan and elsewhere, the cry is “we are all Malala,” and most of India seems to be protesting the student’s death. There is little evidence the protests will change anything at all. Can they?

The New York Times reports a third of New Delhi’s female population was sexually harassed in the year prior to a recent survey. One percent complained to the police. Why? Ask any woman. There is danger in reporting trouble. Just last week, two men raped an 18-year-old woman in India’s Punjab State. She complained. Then policemen humiliated her, making her describe the attack over and over and over again. She committed suicide.

We can blame violent video games and movies. We can blame poverty and boredom. In some countries, the problem seems to be too many men and not enough women. In India, where girls are often aborted (or, some say, killed at birth), there are 15 million unattached males between the ages of 15 and 35. That number may double by 2020. What will the future bring?

Read the rest of Zagano’s piece at the National Catholic Register, where she ponders how Christianity might be the antidote to violence against women — but the voice of Christianity is blocked because “more than half the world’s Christians are in a church that does not appear to treat women as equals.”

By David Cramer

David Cramer

David Cramer

I believe that it is inconsistent for one to be a strong complementarian and a Protestant at the same time. Complementarians often hold that, though women can be involved in various forms of ministry, they cannot become “ordained ministers.” But consider the following simple argument:

According to one of the fundamental tenets of Protestantism, the priesthood of all believers (hereafter, PAB):

(1) All baptized believers are ordained by God as priests.

From here the rest of the argument quickly follows:

(2) Some women are baptized believers.


(3) Some women are ordained by God as priests. Read More…

Jennifer Harris Dault's book, released Nov 2012

Jennifer Harris Dault’s book, released Nov 2012

Growing up Baptist, Jennifer Harris Dault says her calling into the ministry was clouded by comments and assumptions along the way that the pulpit was no place for women.

“I had this feeling as a kid that women could not be pastors,” said Harris Dault, 30, a May Central Baptist Theological Seminary graduate who lives in St. Louis  “It wasn’t until I was already in seminary and had preached my first sermon that I realized I did have these gifts.”

She also realized she wasn’t alone – that many Baptist women, even those traditions OK with women’s ordination – faced the same opposition and doubts she did.

So Harris Dault compiled 23 of those experiences (including her own) into Modern Magnificat: Women Responding to the Call of God, a book released in November.

A common denominator in their stories is the experience of being told by churches they would not be hired despite being the most qualified candidates.  Read More…