These conversations are not statements of our doctrine as expressed in the Book of Discipline, nor are they guidance provided by the Study Commission on Doctrine (SCOD), but they are intended to be open and respectful discussions on various present-day topics. Our intention is not to limit discussion but to elevate it by assuring that God’s love and respect is always expressed. For more information click ABOUT.
Browse posts tag by Women
W.E.L.L. – WOMEN. EQUAL. LEADING. LEARNING

W.E.L.L. – WOMEN. EQUAL. LEADING. LEARNING

September 18, 2017 By dwayman

The Free Methodist Church in Southern California has an initiative led by a group of three excellent leaders: Rev. Colleen Hurley-Bates, Rev. Cheri Coleman, Lillian Johnson  They titled the initiative W.E.L.L.  You can find their work here.

They explain:

 Core to our freedoms within the Free Methodist Church is the freedom for women to participate fully in the life, ministry and governance of the church as called and gifted by God. We want to invite you to be part of the conversation as we discuss how women are currently serving within the life and leadership of the FMC in Southern California and identify new opportunities moving forward.

At a recent meeting they had an excellent presentation by Dr. Bernice Ledbetter of Pepperdine University.  This audio presentation is presented here to provide  recent research substantiating what many of us are experiencing:  Women and Men working together make better decisions and are more effective.

W.E.L.L. Meeting 9/10/17

Keynote by Dr. Bernice Ledbetter, EdD, Director, Center for Women in Leadership.

 

DISHONORING WOMEN DOCTORS

DISHONORING WOMEN DOCTORS

June 25, 2017 By dwayman

Language is important.  In this article studies were done and found that female doctors are often introduced by their first names while male doctors receive the title they have both earned of “Dr.”

The question this raises is whether in the church we also introduce our female pastors as “Pastor” or only use their first name.    The result of such continual referencing is noted in the article as dishonoring.  For the entire article click here.

The article reads in part:

“As sociologists, we know language is very powerful; it both reflects larger social meanings and patterns and can directly contribute to them, in many cases perpetuating social inequality,” said Allison, who studies gender equality.

“The words we use can shape how people feel about themselves and others, how they interact and how they make decisions about the distribution of rights and resources,” she said….

“Women don’t tend to be thought of as leaders. They’re thought of as worker bees and the people who work well together,” said Templeton, immediate past president of the American Medical Women’s Association. “Talking to us is no different than talking to their wives or daughters at home. They just assume, somehow, that they don’t warrant the same respect as the men do,” she said….

Anupam Jena, an associate professor at Harvard Medical School, said male introducers could be using first names because they felt that “the work done by female colleagues is somehow different than the work done by male colleagues.”

“Subconsciously they are not equating the stature of female speakers to be the same as male speakers,” he said.

INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY HATES WOMEN

INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY HATES WOMEN

June 2, 2017 By dwayman

A culture that claims to value women while also accepting pornography is self deceptive. The research on the damage that pornography is doing to our culture is clear.  Here is a representative website that has information.  In this post the FIGHT THE NEW DRUG website suggests an insightful way to talk to children and youth about the damage.

In part it says:

Pornography.

It’s been directly linked to physical problems like early erectile dysfunctiondepressionirreversible relationship issueshuman trafficking, and sexual exploitation. There’s a huge amount of information—you can find a lot of it in our blog—detailing the problems associated with porn, all of which are worth our attention. These are all issues that have arisen alongside the internet, which has made porn both more available and affordable than ever, and opened the physical and mental pathways to ever more degrading, extreme content.

Understanding the real-world negative effects of the global porn industry on individuals and society is important, but it requires some expertise and detailed explanation of some pretty complicated issues. That’s not too hard for most of us, but if understanding the problems with porn requires a mostly-developed brain, how can we teach kids that porn has unavoidable downsides before they’ve already been exposed to some of the worst of what the internet has to offer?

FREE METHODIST WOMEN LEADERS BRING UNIQUE ABILITIES

FREE METHODIST WOMEN LEADERS BRING UNIQUE ABILITIES

May 19, 2017 By dwayman

By Dr. Denny Wayman, Lead Superintendent of the FMCSC.

At the 2017 Annual Conference in Southern California I presented the findings of an informal study I made asking Free Methodist Women Leaders what it is that women bring to the leadership position that is unique.  These are my findings and presentation:

 

In Genesis we are told that the curse of the fall is such that women have been subjected to men (Gen. 3:16) – AND –  it is the Gospel message that this subjugation will be so no more within the Kingdom of God (Matt. 20:25-26)  This imperative given to us by our Lord involves both humble diligence toward our own personal prejudices and a consistent commitment toward our church systems such that our sisters are empowered and encouraged to fulfill their God-given purposes.

This year we decided as your superintendents to not divide into workshops as though some of us are interested in missions, and some in leadership, and some in multiethnic ministry, and some in empowering women.  All of these five values we all share equally.  They define us as Free Methodists!

It has been said that the 21st century is the century designed for the Methodist Message.  Our commitment to relationships allows the postmodern world to be engaged in conversations that reach beneath the resistance to religion into direct relationships with God.

WOMEN IN THE EARLY CHURCH

WOMEN IN THE EARLY CHURCH

April 15, 2017 By dwayman
The Neglected History of Women in the Early Church A number of prominent leaders, scholars, and benefactors of the early church were women and—despite neglect by many modern historians—the diligent researcher can still uncover a rich history.

By Catherine Kroeger

 

Women were the last disciples at the cross and the first at the empty tomb. they remained integral to the work of the church in its early centuries. Catherine Kroeger scours historical data to compile an impressive collection of stories about noteworthy women in the early church.

One of the best-kept secrets in Christianity is the enormous role that women played in the early church.

Though they leave much unsaid, still, both Christian and secular writers of the time attest many times to the significant involvement of women in the early growth of Christianity.

Celsus, a 2nd-century detractor of the faith, once taunted that the church attracted only “the silly and the mean and the stupid, with women and children.” His contemporary, Bishop Cyprian of Carthage, acknowledged in his Testimonia that “Christian maidens were very numerous” and that it was difficult to find Christian husbands for all of them. These comments give us a picture of a church disproportionately populated by women.

Why? One reason might have been the practice of exposing unwanted female infants—abandoning them to certain death. Christians, of course, repudiated this practice, and thus had more living females.

WESLEYAN PERSPECTIVES ON WOMEN IN MINISTRY

WESLEYAN PERSPECTIVES ON WOMEN IN MINISTRY

December 20, 2016 By douglas-britt

Azusa Pacific University — July 2005 – Dr. Karen Strand Winslow

This presentation was created to address a need in Free Methodist churches for education about the ordination and placement of women pastors in order that people in and out of the church might experience the salvation of God as preached and enacted by women pastors. In spite of our formal denominational stance, which is to ordain women as elders and located them, Free Methodist women face opposition from local congregations who have not resolved objections to women ministers. Many steps have been taken to ameliorate this problem, which is, to a significant degree, one of lack of education, exposure, and experience. One such step, this paper, requested by the Board of Bishops, was created to address objections, and answer questions regarding women pastors.

Those who resist women preaching and ministering often do so on the grounds of 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 and 1 Timothy 2:12-15, which seem to restrict first century Corinthian and Ephesian women from conversing and teaching in the emerging church. However some of the Free Methodists among these are unaware of why their church ordains women. Like many Christians, they think the New Testament allows women to serve in all sorts of capacities in the church except that of senior pastor. Thus, a large part of the discussion below examines these passages.

Free Methodist churches claim the Wesleyan theological foundation for faith and practice. The term “Wesleyan” means a holistic methodology that widely embraces Scripture,

FMC STATEMENT ON WOMEN IN MINISTRY

FMC STATEMENT ON WOMEN IN MINISTRY

December 20, 2016 By dwayman

Statement adopted by the 1995 General Conference of the Free Methodist Church of North America

The General Conference of 1974 passed a resolution “giving women equal status with men in the ministry of the church” (General Conference Minutes, p. 388). According to the General Conference report in the Light & Life magazine, the vote was unanimous. That vote, in the minds of many, settled the issue and they turned their attention to other concerns. During the intervening twenty years, the denomination’s position has not changed. However, outside the denomination, the voices opposing women in ministry and limiting the leadership roles of women in the local church have become more assertive. Some of those voices are respected evangelical leaders (e.g., refer to J. I. Packer below) who seem to be ignorant of Wesleyan/holiness church history, inferring that anyone who differs from them is playing fast and loose with Scripture. This is confusing to many. On the other hand, within the denomination there is growing concern over the fact that, though women officially have access to full ordination and any role in the church, few women are in leadership positions. At a time when women are entering formerly male-dominated professions in increasing numbers and providing community leadership, the percentage of women among Free Methodist pastors, especially senior pastors, and in church and conference leadership roles, is not growing as would be expected. Given these concerns, the Study Commission on Doctrine believes it is time to articulate anew the church’s position on women in ministry.

WOMEN IN MINISTRY — Some Hermeneutical Reflections

WOMEN IN MINISTRY — Some Hermeneutical Reflections

December 20, 2016 By dwayman

Introduction

Almost everyone believes and allows women to be in ministry. Even those who will disagree with my views on the matter do, in fact, recognize not only the privilege but duty of women to be in ministry (where would the church be if throughout history women had not served in nearly every form of ministry!) The first question is: what limitations have been paced on the leadership of women in ministry and why? The second question is: are these limitations general and universal or specific and contextual? I will return to these questions at the conclusion of this paper.

How We Treat The Bible

I begin with several assumptions I make about the Bible. First, the Bible is the Word of God and is therefore the final authority for Christian believing and living. The Bible is not so much a single book as it is a library of books — different kinds of literature, written over long periods of time, for different life settings of the people of God. Despite all these differences, however, we believe the Bible is unified in its witness to the one true God and reveals His plan for the world and humanity.

These assumptions are critical to our discussion. Let me explain. It is not enough to find a verse or passage that teaches something and accept that as the only or the most important word on the subject. We must rather seek to get a sense of the flow of Scripture,