Presbyterianism, whose bodies are also called Reformed Churches, share a common origin in the 16th-century Swiss Reformation and the teachings of John Calvin, and today is one of the largest Christian denominations in Protestantism.

Women as Pastors

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  • Women as Pastors

    I know a few Presbyterian churches with women as the pastor or minister (not sure what the correct term is). Is this a common practice in Presbyterian churches? I do not know much about Presbyterians at all, and don't have an opinion on this either way, just curious on the view of women in leadership roles in the Presbyterian church.

  • #2
    Women can be pastors, sure. I really don't mind, as long as the Word of God stays the same. I don't see why it's such a big deal for some people though. I think it's great too, as the barrier gets broken, more women who grew up in religious communities, who thought they couldn't be pastors, can now accomplish their dream into serving the Lord. Why can't you just be happy for them, and wish them luck in their new profession?
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    • #3
      Originally posted by OursIsTheFury View Post
      Women can be pastors, sure.
      I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet.
      (1 Timothy 2:12 ESV)

      As in all the churches of the saints, the women should keep silent in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says. If there is anything they desire to learn, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church.
      (1 Corinthians 14:34-35 ESV)
      Clyde Herrin's Blog
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      • #4
        This is one, of many, reason why there have been splits within denominations and churches themselves. The more liberal flavors of denominations will allow female pastors/elders as well as homosexuals. Of course those are really unacceptable for different reasons. You will not find female or homosexual pastors/elders/deacons in the more conservative churches/denominations.
        Last edited by Knotical; 08-31-2016, 12:48 PM.
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        • #5
          The church, no matter WHAT religion, needs to be dragged kicking and screaming into the modern generation, or else more and more people are going to desert it, and what it stands for and teaches.

          While the core teachings and values remain the same, things like allowing women to preach needs to be dealt with, and its just one of the many ways of trying to show that its not the archaic structure that people think it is.
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          • #6
            That is quite the contradiction you have going there pwarbi. You can't have it both ways when it comes to following God. Either you are of the world, or you are of Christ. Either you follow the full counsel of God, or you don't. There is no middle ground.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by pwarbi View Post
              The church, no matter WHAT religion, needs to be dragged kicking and screaming into the modern generation, or else more and more people are going to desert it, and what it stands for and teaches.

              While the core teachings and values remain the same, things like allowing women to preach needs to be dealt with, and its just one of the many ways of trying to show that its not the archaic structure that people think it is.
              No, the church has too often chosen to conform to the present generation rather than remaining true to the eternal truths that God has revealed in the Bible. The core teachings include the teaching that only men should be allowed to preach and lead. This teaching is in conflict with our society and therefore many churches have rejected it. This is a good place to learn more about this subject:
              Women in Ministry | carm
              Clyde Herrin's Blog
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              • #8
                Well it's just my opinion, but if the church doesn't conform, then like I said, it's going to have less and less influence on society. Look at the Catholic church and how the pope as apologised for the churches failings in the past. People need to know that it is open to change, but that doesn't necessarily mean changing its views, but more the way it expresses them.
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                • #9
                  I remember this story last year where there was a new female bishop; Most senior woman bishop consecrated in Canterbury service - BBC News
                  It was a big deal because there has been years of opposition. I think with the recent revelations of abuse within the church, it needed to make their profile more modern and equal. The question is, is it better to have the best person for the job, or the best male available? Isn't it better for the public to have someone who is honest and good rather than an applicant who is mediocre?

                  I am sure there are many that still oppose it, yet the Church of England struggles with more churches closing down and attendance falling. I actually live opposite the Vicarage and the church school is next door to me, but my parents don't like this particular vicar and so it's whether the person suits the community too.
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                  • #10
                    G'day Ava,

                    One of the first steps a body of a church tends to take towards apostasy is abandoning the principal of Sola Scriptura. The Scriptures are then not viewed as being authoritative, and the world's wisdom accepted as equal or superior to the means God communicated His will - Scripture. The slippery slope in most churches begins by abandoning Sola Scriptura, then the promotion of egalitarianism, homosexual elders etc. It really never stops, in some of the PCUSA churches, there are people in places of leadership, and I say leaders because they are not Pastors, these people of the PCUSA in some cases do not even believe God exists.

                    The Presbyterian church of the United States PCUSA, has abandoned the Reformed standards. Not only are the Scriptures no longer authoritative, but even belief in God and God Himself are a footnote in the church's creeds and confessions.

                    Originally posted by Ava View Post
                    The question is, is it better to have the best person for the job, or the best male available?
                    The question is what does the Bible say? However, I acknowledge the situation that may arise in our world, when men refuse to take leadership, it is natural for others to assume the role. Mind you, this does not suggest that women may not hold certain offices in the church, it just means that women are not to hold certain offices over men. But consider that man was created first and woman as his help meet. Adam was not given Eve because he was superior, but because he was in desperate need of help. Another words, in my view God says, Adam I know you are not well off alone, so I am creating Eve to help you. Now Eve could have struggled for headship, and even taking the forbidden fruit could be construed as such, but regardless, the weight of consequence came down upon the head of the household which was Adam.

                    Consider a cursory reading of pertinent texts that reveal three important observations:

                    1) there were no known women pastors in New Testament times
                    2) none of the instructions regarding church order include instructions for women pastors
                    3) some texts on church order explicitly forbid women to occupy that role. Paul, in 1 Tim. 2:12, states, "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man" . This verse is introduced by a statement that women should learn "in silence," and it is followed by the statement that "she must be silent." The word silence means being possessed by a calmness of spirit and peaceful disposition. It is set as the opposite to "teaching" and "having authority over a man." Paul does not expect that women will not or can not learn or teach (compare with Titus 2:3-5 and 2 Tim. 1:5; 3:14,15). He states that they cannot teach or have authority over men. Thus, they cannot have a pastoral position, or perform the pastoral function, for that puts them in authority over men.

                    On accountability as the voice of America's conscience (the church). Having abandoned Sola Scriptura for worldliness our culture has taken various views (including liberalism and post modernism) which have led to the decline of our society.

                    Basically, my personal view is this, if you're looking to make a social statement or consider the world's wisdom superior to that of Scripture, and Scripture folly, then you may want to check out a book club or the PCUSA.

                    However, under the headship of a woman, I will say, what they do not have is a pastor, or a church.

                    And that's my position.

                    God bless,
                    William
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Marie View Post
                      I know a few Presbyterian churches with women as the pastor or minister (not sure what the correct term is). Is this a common practice in Presbyterian churches? I do not know much about Presbyterians at all, and don't have an opinion on this either way, just curious on the view of women in leadership roles in the Presbyterian church.
                      You may know a few Presbyterian churches with women as Pastors but what you will not find is a Reformed/Presbyterian church with a woman pastor. Presbyterian sometimes only identifies the type or form of church government and not doctrine. What you have there are bodies that have abandoned Reformed standards, and clung to the Presbyterian form of church government.
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by pwarbi View Post
                        if the church doesn't conform, then like I said, it's going to have less and less influence on society.
                        If the church wants to influence society it must conform to God's standards, not society's. By doing so it will receive God's power and be able to make a real difference. Without the power of the Holy Spirit it can do nothing to bring about any lasting change in society.
                        Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
                        (Romans 12:2 ESV)
                        Clyde Herrin's Blog
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by theophilus View Post
                          If the church wants to influence society it must conform to God's standards, not society's. By doing so it will receive God's power and be able to make a real difference. Without the power of the Holy Spirit it can do nothing to bring about any lasting change in society.
                          Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
                          (Romans 12:2 ESV)
                          Some people apparently choose to overlook much of the New Testament.
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                          • #14
                            In Baguio City, I was surprised to see women ministers giving communion in the Catholic church. From what I know, only men are given the authority to serve as lay ministers in assisting the priest during the communion hour.

                            This is my opinion and does not involve the teachings of the Catholic church. It used to be a man's world so most, if not all religion, hinge on men. Church leaders are men because that is the tradition. In one thread that I questioned the lineage of Jesus from Abraham leading to Joseph, the bloodline of Mary was not mentioned simply because women have no equal role then, they are second class human beings. In other words, it was a male chauvinistic world. It's only in the past century when people recognized that so called women equality. So I guess another century is needed before we would see women as head of the church. It is unthinkable to see a woman Pope, right? But it may happen.
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                            • #15
                              I understand where people are coming from, but more and more people are choosing to turn their back on religion, and while you might say then it doesn't matter, as long as the church doesn't change or conform then that's the main thing, but what's the future?
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