Rachel Held Evans is hosting a week of mutuality on her blog. As part of this synchroblog event, mind I will be doing two things: One, cialis I will be highlighting posts that I have written on the subject; and two, Leslie Keeney over at The Ruthless Monk and I will be posting about encouraging women to attend this year’s ETS annual conference that is coming up in the fall. We want to write about this now so that people have plenty of time to prepare and plan to come.
The role of Pastor and Theologian are off limits to women. That is what some churches teach women. These offices are teaching offices and are reserved for men only. Even in churches and seminaries that are egalitarian, it more common than not to find that women in these teaching roles are a minority.
Partly I think it has to do with the fact that potential female scholars are encouraged, or find it easier, to study and teach areas that are “womanly”: gender issues, counseling, women’s ministry, children’s ministry, youth ministry etc.
Theology is not off limits to women. We shouldn’t be scared of theology, or think that it’s reserved for the “old boys club”.
Theology needs women, and women need theology.
Female theologians are not just writing about feminism or “women’s issues”. In fact, there are some amazing contributions being made in the areas of Christology, ecclesiology, soteriology and much, much more.
So if I may, I’d like to introduce you to a few of my favourite female theologians:
Dr. Tanner is Professor of Systematic Theology at Yale Divinity School. She has written several books, including Christ the Key, and Jesus, Humanity and the Trinity. Ben Myers has said this about Dr. Tanner:
“In my view, Kathryn Tanner is one of the best theologians working in the Reformed tradition today – she has both a profound grasp of the dogmatic tradition and an acute sensitivity to the contemporary theological situation.” See also, Chris Tessone’s Why I Love Kathryn Tanner and Tripp Fuller’s I Heart Kathryn Tanner’s Christocentric Christology!
I first came across Dr. Coakley’s writings while doing research on the Council of Chalcedon for a Barth paper. Dr. Coakley is Professor of Divinity at the University of Cambridge. According to her faculty page, she is working on a four volume systematic theology (Yay!). Check out her suggestions of 5 essential theology books of the last 25 years. Also, you can watch (or even read) the Gifford Lectures Series she recently did at the University of Aberdeen on the topic of theology, ethics and the philosophy of science.
Technically Dr. Murphy is a philosopher, but much of her work intersects with theology, and has been invaluable to my studies. Dr. Murphy is Professor of Christian Philosophy at Fuller Theological Seminary. In her writings on the human soul, Dr. Murphy argues for a non-reductive physicalist position (i.e., there is no dichotomy of body and ‘soul’).
Dr. Charry is Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology at Princeton Theological Seminary. I’ve become interested in Dr. Charry’s work on the theology of happiness. There is much overlap between Dr. Charry’s work and work that is currently being done in the field of positive psychology.
Dr. Dawn is a teaching fellow at Regent College in Vancouver, B.C. Dr. Dawn has written on worship, pastoral theology and much more. Her book, Powers, Weakness, and the Tabernacling of God won a Christianity Today Book Award. And of course, her book Reaching out without Dumbing Down is a must-read for anyone involved in leading worship in the Church.
A few more that I have read:
Catherine LaCugna: God for Us: The Trinity and the Christian Life.
Elizabeth Johnson: Consider Jesus: Waves of Renewal in Christology.