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Things Only Christian Women Hear

Things Only Christian Women Hear

Yesterday, Sarah Bessey (author of Jesus Feminist, blogger, preacher, and all-around all-star) sparked a massive Twitter conversation: #ThingsOnlyChristianWomenHear. She mentioned on Facebook this morning that she "didn't have a big agenda with it - honestly just thought it would be an interesting convo on the heels of similar conversations. But now this hashtag is pulling back the curtain on the everyday lived experiences of women within the Church." #TRUTH

Watching the conversation unfold has been interesting, infuriating, ridiculous, hilarious, and so so relatable. Here are the top ten very real things I have heard personally and am hearing echoed again and again in this conversation.

1) Said to teenage me: "You are an amazing leader! You'd make an excellent pastor's wife someday!" Simultaneously said to my teenage brother: "You have an amazing story! You'd be an excellent youth pastor someday!" #benignsexism #doublestandard #womenarepastorstoo

2) When I ask about stances on women in leadership: "We love women! We totally support women! We're raising up young women leaders!" *looks at staff profiles... *finds only male pastors and female support staff.. *sees that only male elders is concretely written in the church bylaws... #notrealsupport #notrealinclusion #falseadvertising

3) "Me: I noticed your preaching conference has all male headliners, and that you only have men on your conference leadership team... Them: But we have a woman on the worship team! But we have one breakout session led by a woman talking about women in ministry! That's something!" #tokenism #notreallyhelpful #getwomenatthetable

4) “We have female directors, they're basically like pastors" Except NOT in title or authority or pay or support or inclusion... So really not equal at all in any way. #separateandunequal

5) "You want to be more involved in leadership? You're bilingual, have a master's degree, pursuing full-time ministry? Wow! You should be on the welcome team! Or teach Sunday School! How about that?" #howaboutnot #howaboutpreaching

6) "You can teach this class, but there has to be a male leader teamed with you, you know for diversity and stuff. We'll pair you up with a (real) (male) pastor." #womenarepastorstoo

7) "You can give a message on Sunday, but all your study and your final work needs to be reviewed every step of the way by the (real) (male) pastor." #itsasermonnotamessage #justletherpreach #womenarepreacherstoo

8) "You're still single because guys are intimidated by you--you're smart and driven and you really love Jesus. How is he supposed to lead you?"#umwhat #leadyourself #collectiveleadership #cocreatorsinthekingdom #egalitarianrelationship #notahierarchy

9) "You're in seminary? So... you're going to be a nun?" #no #womenarepastorstoo #thingsonlychristianwomenhear

10) "Male colleague to female colleague: We can't meet alone ever because I have to keep my conduct above reproach and meeting with you alone could have the appearance of evil." #umwhat #billygrahamrule #stop

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