Sexism & Churches: A Twitterview with Sarah Sentilles

I happened upon the book, A Church of Her Own, last spring on a colleague’s bookshelf, and immediately decided to add it to the reading list for my seminar on Sex and God.  Specifically, the first week that we spend talking about women’s ordination in Christian traditions.  After working through John Wijngaards’ careful study of the major arguments against ordaining women in the Roman Catholic tradition, students turn to consider Protestant Christianity, and specifically what happens after traditions do decide to ordain women.

Sexism is dead, right?!

Hardly.

A Church of Her Own starts from Sentilles’ own experience with the Episcopal Church’s ordination process, and expands from there to include her interviews with many women in many different Christian traditions.  She includes chapters on call, the job search, mentors, and other stages of the journey of discernment and employment.  She recounts stories of sexism, hostility, joy, and grace.  The book even covers topics related to clothing (a priest in open-toed shoes?!) and sexuality (a pregnant priest?!  a transgender priest?!).

I invited my students to write tweetable questions for the author.  I tweeted them to her, she responded, and here is the result … in Storify format.  (Technology can be kind of groovy!)

 


About Caryn Riswold

Caryn D. Riswold is a feminist theologian in the Lutheran tradition. She is Professor of Religion and Chair of Gender and Women’s Studies at Illinois College in Jacksonville, Illinois, where she has worked for over a decade teaching undergraduates to think critically and creatively about religion. She earned her Ph.D. and Th.M. from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, holds a master’s degree from the Claremont School of Theology, and received her B.A. from Augustana College in her childhood hometown of Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

  • http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/ Lothar Lorraine

    Every discrimination (sexism against men and women, racism against blacks and whites, scorn against fat girls and so and so forth) must be combated in the same manner.

    Lovely greetings from Europe.

    Lothars Sohn – Lothar’s son

    http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com

  • debodykes

    Truthful, insightful, honest … It’s about time! So encourage by Sarah Sentilles’ revealing, direct, and accurate disclosure of epidemic sexism that continues to plague the institutional church. After my own experience of atrocious sexism and failure to hold those accountable (men), I finally retired from the Episcopal ordained life (early retirement) and am trying to raise awareness about the corrupt nature of the patriarchal run church. It rarely gets more juicy than the “hidden and accurate” accounts of church sexism in the deep south!