Grant me Justice! Reading the Chronicle of the Ordination of Women in the MCSA as the Making of a Patronage Ministry

Obusitswe Tiroyabone-A-Sedupelela

Abstract


In 2016 the Methodist Church of Southern Africa (MCSA) celebrates 40 years of the ordination of women which signifies a milestone in the ministry. Whilst this calls for celebration, it is also important that we lament the challenges women ministers are facing in the church. The chronicle of how the church came to ordain women as ministers in the MCSA cites tensions and debates as well as theological arguments for and against the ordination of women. This paper reads this chronicle with a hermeneutic of suspicion. The paper holds that the decision of the church to ordain women has not translated to women being ordained ministers like men within the church, but rather the decision created a patronage system within the ministry where male ministers (and their wives) are patrons and female ministers their clients. The woman minister in the MCSA joins the woman in the Luke narrative who continues to go to the judge (the MCSA) and laments “Grant me Justice!”


Keywords


Methodist Church, Justice, women

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Copyright (c) 2017 Obusitswe Tiroyabone-A-Sedupelela

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