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Posted on April 29th, 2014, by

This paper discusses the female clergy as parts of alterations in the church. The entrance of females into the ministry has been regarded as the most crucial transformations in 20th century Christianity and has altered both the institutional existences of the churches and the lives of those females who have been ordained. The research demonstrates that female clergy today are in the main position to alteration in the Church. Females, especially those in elite statuses, have the opportunity to influence social alteration that benefits females’ interests. The first lady women were ordained in the middle of the 19th century. The initial ordinations of ladies took place in 1853 in the Congregationalist, in 1863 in Universalists and in 1866 in Methodist Protestant Church. Then, the ordination of females has become accepted in most churches.

Women in Ministry

In spite of the growth in the quantity of female clergy, the number of ladies in leadership statuses increases slowly – if at all. According to National Congregation Research, 7.9% of congregations in the USA had a female leader (in 2007). In general, clergywomen are becoming more accepted in churches. However, in spite of this formal acceptance, clergy females have experienced subordination and also discrimination in many churches. There are a lot of surveys on clergywomen and the experiences and most of all on the troubles they experience in the career. The researches with various methods demonstrate there is a universal agreement by women clergy that – glass ceilings actually exists: females face passive discrimination in the career and have troubles in advancing therein (Chaves, Anderson, 415-440).

It is clear that the career opportunities for females in church are not equal to those of men clergy. Ladies have troubles in finding a job, obtaining leadership statuses, and obtaining a lower salary for the same kind of jobs. Male clergy are more likely to obtain managerial positions whilst women are far more likely to take staff-kind occupations – and it is not merely of their personal will. Previous researches prove that females who succeed too well are usually undermined by males (Charlton, 419-424).

Also, previous research demonstrates that male and female highlight the calling from God as the main source of motivation. Nevertheless, this type of orientation has reduced among younger clergy. Male and female church workers are very committed to working for church and committed to the dogma as well. Still, there are some dissimilarities between the two genders: clergymen are far more likely to have faith in the existence of Satan and in Jesus’ return, whilst ladies are more likely to have faith in angels and miracles depicted in the Bible. Narrative analysis of belief among church clergy reveal that there were some dissimilarities between males and females in the way their faith was created, but it appeared that age and educational degree were far stronger factors than a gender.

Many surveys prove that females are far more liberal in their theological orientation than men clergy (Chaves, Anderson, 415-440). When church workers were asked to estimate whether they regarded themselves as theologically conservative and liberal, it proved that 68% of women clergy considered themselves to be liberal, meanwhile there were about 46% of men clergy. Just 13% of ladies treated themselves as mostly conservative compared to 33% of men (Sullins, 243-266). The liberal religious groups and human beings are more prepared than conservatives to accept changing positions in the religious matters. Those with liberal attitudes are more tolerant. For the liberals it is typical to stress such a performance, where people should make an effort first and foremost to relate religion to different social troubles. Attention can be paid to issues pertaining to human dignity, global poverty, environmental issues and the identity of the human being.

The conservative groups are less likely to have women clergy in the main positions. Religious groups and people with orientation tendency to emphasize purely spiritual tasks are the fundamental function of religion. They take the opinion that the sacred message of the Holy Bible has seriously to be accepted (Sullins, 838-880). They are really committed to the opinions they consider to be a genuine doctrine and take a conventional attitude to the morality.

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