Let’s Just Be Blunt Here: If You See “Rev” Before a Woman’s Name, Go the Other Way

There are many reasons the Bible is pretty clear that women should not be leaders in the church. In fact, if you look at the churches where women have joined the leadership you find churches that are shrinking in denominations headed towards collapse. Both Christian and Episcopalian church leaderships that have gone left have almost always done so after scrapping this basic rule in the name of inclusivity.

And if you need further reminder, just check this out.

I’m glad the “reverend” is writing about recovery from sexual violence and shame. But I find it bizarre that she ties it so much to Mary, particularly as a Presbyterian.

I’m not blaming my sense of ruin on the Virgin Mary, not entirely. Protestants do not claim Mary in the way Catholics do, but every Advent I feel a sense of kinship. I know what it’s like to be a good girl whose life got upended by what someone did to her body. Of course, her story plot was good and mine was bad. Plus she was, well, a saint. And I’m not.

Still, I study her this time of the year — always dressed in blue with downcast eyes — and want to ask: “How was it really? And how do you feel about what the patriarchy has done with you?”

I’m convinced of this: Mary is not responsible for what we’ve done to her story. Church culture has overfocused on virginity and made it into an idol of sexual purity. When it comes to female experience, the church seems compelled to shrink and distort and manipulate.

Not sure what church experiences she has had, but wow. The “Mary was raped” stuff is a distortion of the Biblical message that paints God as a rapist. It is common among liberal theology, but then liberal theologians really seem vastly more wrapped up in sexual theology than conservative churches, which focus on trusting Jesus.

Just bizarre.

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Erick Erickson

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