The Quandary of the Good Woman Pastor by S. M. Hutchens

MORTAL REMAINS

The Quandary of the Good Woman Pastor

During my years in doctoral study I was also settled, as the old term goes, as pastor over a small and rather sad Congregational church in a similarly small and sad denomination. In those days my views on women's ordination, at first neutral, were turning increasingly negative as I concentrated more on the issue theologically. As my catholic instincts strengthened during the course of my studies, so did my opposition to egalitarianism and all its works. In those days, however, I was still at the place where I declared that women's ordination was "not a hill I would die on."

It came to pass that I was summoned to an ordination council for a woman, so to operate there on the basis of some preliminary conclusions on the matter. This was to take place in a little country church somewhere in the fields of northwestern Illinois. I went with the intention of voting her down, and being the only negative vote if necessary, if I decided she was a wicked feminist who would poison her congregation with the doctrines of demons.

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S. M. Hutchens is a Touchstone senior editor.

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