My question for the future Archbishop

I know I don’t get to vote for the new Archbishop of Sydney however I do have a question for the nominees. I’ve submitted it to both of them via whyrick.info and glenndavies.info

Here’s my question

Looking at the major committees/boards/governance structures in the Sydney Diocese it seems that women are under-represented. For example

  • Standing Committee – 10 out of 56 members are women
  • Moore Theological College – 1 out of 16 members are women
  • Anglican Church League – 7 out of 59 members are women
  • Anglicare – 4 out of 16 members are women
  • Evangelism and New Churches – 1 out of 8 members are women

What do you propose to do to correct the under representation of women in major organisations in the diocese?

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Complementarianism and Egalitarianism: the coming divide

Some great posts happening at The Sola Panel.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

(via Mark)

*Edit: Part 4 is now up.

While I think these posts are excellent, I do think there is an aspect that is missing in this discussion. In my own exchanges with egalitarians it has been made very clear that for them there is an experiential aspect to their conclusion. For them (the people I have had interaction with) the basis of their exploration and final conviction of egalitarianism is that when complementarianism goes wrong, it goes *extremely* wrong, and generally for the woman. Some of the woman were themselves the victim of this – their husbands and/or pastors using complementary teachings as an excuse for behaviour that is nothing short of abuse of the woman in their lives. We need to engage in this part of the discussion too. First and foremost recognise that what these women have experienced is absolutely wrong and terrible, and (remembering our unity in Christ) humbly walk with them through their healing process.

If you want a glimpse into what I’m talking about read the comments on this post (particularly those from molleth).

How Not To Rape People: A Handy Guide For Modern Men And Footballers

The Problem:

In my perusings of the modern media landscape, a worrying trend has come to my attention: young men who apparently just can’t stop having non-consensual sex with others. It’s a tricky problem, and one to which there are, clearly, no easy solutions. I mean, it’s all very well to say “No means no”, but as popular ex-footballer/arachnid Peter “Spida” Everitt says, when a girl goes home with a guy at 3am, it’s not for a cup of Milo. So we can see there are two sides to every story: on the one hand, a young lady might feel violated, but on the other hand, why do these women keep going round to strangers’ houses in the hopes of having some Milo? Why don’t they buy their OWN Milo? Young people today, I ask you.

But never fear. Ben has put together THE HANDY GUIDE TO NOT RAPING PEOPLE IN SEVEN EASY STEPS

Well worth a read if you find not raping girls difficult. And if you don’t it’s still worth reading for a different reason.

Facebook and Breast Cancer

I’m sure you remember the fuss last year over the fb campaign to raise breast cancer awareness by putting the colour of your bra in your status. If you have no idea what I’m talking about your probably a guy, because it was a secret girls only campaign.

Well I’m about to spill the beans on this year’s scheme. This is the message I received in my fb inbox just a few days ago.

Remember the game last year about what color bra you were wearing at the moment? The purpose was to increase awareness of October Breast Cancer Awareness month. It was a tremendous success and we had men wondering for days what was with the colors and it made it to the news. This year’s game has to do with your handbag/purse, where we put our handbag the moment we get home for example “I like it on the couch”, “I like it on the kitchen counter”, “I like it on the dresser” well u get the idea. Just put your answer as your status with nothing more than that and cut n paste this message and forward to all your FB female friends to their inbox. The bra game made it to the news. Let’s see how powerful we women really are!!!

There’s so many things wrong with this I barely know where to start.

Call me stupid but I’m not sure what this actually achieves. Awareness means nothing if no-one does anything and this campaign doesn’t encourage anything other than the ridiculous sexualisation of a very serious issue. I want women to be encouraged to self examine their breasts, I want people to give money to research, I want women who have/have had breast cancer to have a voice and speak out about this issue but this silly campaign does none of this.

That’s my major issue but another question I have is why does this show ‘how powerful we women really are’? Because sex is power? Because having a secret over men is power? If that’s the case I suggest someone has a warped sense of power. If it’s not the case I’d love someone to explain it to me.

And speaking of having a secret over men, why on earth do we want to exclude men from breast cancer awareness? I know they don’t (as often) get breast cancer, but I’ll tell you who does: their mothers, and sisters, wives and daughters. This issue affects men too and its abhorrent that we would have an awareness campaign that leaves men out.

I myself have not had breast cancer but some people very near to me have. I want everyone to have an active awareness of it, but lets raise the issue in a way that it inclusive, sensitive and loving rather than sexualising it and objectifying women.

For more on the sexualisation of breast cancer campaigns read what Melinda has to say here.

Lynx Stynx!

CollectiveShout have had some great wins this week with campaigns that have resulted in action from Bonds, Gold Coast Turf Club and now Woolies, who have withdrawn from a Lynx promotion.

But the Lynx brand needs to hear more from women AND men who oppose its sexist and objectifying advertising. So CollectiveShout have launched the Lynx Stynx campaign.

Lynx is known for its sexist advertising, on billboards, in print, online and on TV. Lynx is a brand of deodorant, but what the company are also selling is the idea that women are there to be used and that men have an automatic entitlement to women’s bodies.

It’s time to send a strong message to Lynx and its parent company Unilever, that we will not tolerate this sexist, objectifying marketing targeted at teenage boys anymore.

One of the most offensive things about Lynx advertising is that its parent company, Unilever, also sells Dove and was responsible for the Dove, Real Beauty campaign. This is a company who, in order to sell products to women, claims to desire to

educate and inspire all young people on a wider definition of beauty.

Sounds great, except that it obviously means nothing to Unilever when it comes to selling products to men. This is hypocrisy at its worst and its effect on young boys and girls is devastating. It’s time for us to do something about it.

For more info on Unilever and Lynx and to find out how you can be involved visit CollectiveShout’s Lynx Stynx page.

Subordination vs Subjugation

It intrigues me when people opposing the complementarian view use the words ‘subordination’ and ‘subjugation’ interchangeably.

These words in fact are not synonyms of each other so I wonder if people who use them as such (especially when the appear like this – ‘subjugation/subordination’) are ignorant of the meaning of the words they use, or if they are busy pushing an agenda.

Do you love what you believe?

I’ve been forced, by circumstances, to think hard this week about what I believe and what it means in practice, specifically on the issue of women in ministry. (You can read what I think here and here)

This issue exhausts me. I read and read and listen to sermon after sermon and yet I have question after question and it forever feels unresolved. But this week its exhausting for a different reason. My emotions are leading me astray. The issue is not with the teaching, its with me. My sinful nature that wants everything to be about me hates that there are times when I want to speak and God wants my silence. There are times when I am not the ultimate decision maker and God wants me to submit to those who are. There are times when I am concerned about my own name and God wants me to be concerned for Jesus’ name.

But I know that what I believe is true and what I want is sin. I know I’m being lead astray because really this is a doctrine of Evangelical teaching that I love. I’ll defend it for as long as people are willing to listen. Its been said that what one generation defends, the next will assume and the third will deny. The last generation defended it, my generation assumes it and the next will deny it. If we let them. So really I know this teaching is good because it comes from God and so I love it.

But today I hate it.