After John Piper's controversial teaching on Desiring God's blog last week, in which the well-known Baptist pastor and writer shared his belief that women can't teach seminary because they're not fit to be pastors, Sojourner's Kaitlin Curtice, a Native American Christian writer, speaker and worship leader, posed a question on Twitter, asking men which women have changed their lives and why. She expected a few men to respond, but instead, she got a flood of men and women alike sharing the countless women who've been crucial in their development
The Twitter post, in fact, was so popular even Relevant Magazine and The Christian Post commented on the thread as well, addressing, yes, that women can absolutely lead, but also that an overwhelming amount men acknowledge they need women as leaders in their life, otherwise they wouldn't be as far as they are now.
At every single crossroad of my life, I've had a woman there walking me through it. Every single time I've hit the depths I've had gracious leaders helping me find clarity. Every time my faith has overwhelmed me a woman has been there to help ease the burden. I would be nothing.— Devon Bailey (@Devon_Bailey) January 23, 2018
Kaitlin Curtice herself described the response as follows:
"The responses ranged from professional to personal, pointing out that even our mothers, sisters, partners, and grandmothers are doing amazing work wherever they are and with whomever they come in contact. The idea often put forward by some men and women in the church that a woman’s place is in the home (without any other option) even undervalues that hard work of educating and shaping our children that so many women are doing on a constant basis without acknowledgment."
Here are some responses the author felt are worth highlighting.
Twitter doesn’t offer enough characters for their impact.— Science Mike (@mikemchargue) January 23, 2018
I can’t express how much hearing Rev. Rachel Thompson in the pulpit growing up changed my theology. Having a woman as a pastor (and a @UnionSeminary graduate) meant I didn’t grow up worshiping a patriarchal God.— Benjamin Perry (@FaithfullyBP) January 23, 2018
After the overwhelming response to this tweet, Fuller Theological Seminary shared their position on the argument over whether women are capable of teaching seminary and leading in general. The prominent institution stated:
"Modern debates over the ordination of women often miss the crucial and basic issues of the holistic concept of the ministry of the Church reflected in the New Testament. Of course, no person should be ordained or given any responsibilities of ministry within the Church because of gender or for the sake of a 'point.' On the other hand, we have affirmed in the Church that no person, called and gifted by God, should be denied any role of ministry or leadership in the Church because of one’s gender."
The support the Twitter post got is a testament not only to us but also to the brave writer that women are already in leadership in the church, and the popular opinion is that they're doing a great job at it.
Curtice ends with this charge to the Church:
"Regardless of which side of the conversation we fall on, may we be brave enough to have the conversation with grace, and all the while continue to lift up the women who have been doing the heavy lifting all these years in the life and legacy of the church."