To Build a New Church together? Exploring Interdisciplinary Dialogue with a Christian Women’s Ministry: Addressing Patriarchy in URCSA

Keywords: patriarchy, URCSA, Christian Women’s Ministry (CWM), women's empowerment


There are many routes to address patriarchy in faith communities. This article asks the question whether one particular Christian Women’s Ministry, that of the Uniting Reformed Church in Southern Africa (URCSA), can empower black women to address gender justice. It utilises a historical-narrative approach to interpret the goals, functioning and impact of this ministry in terms of its own primary documents. The findings point to the potential of such a dialogue, yet also highlight the complexities with regard to impact analysis within a denominational context. Some strides have been made, but this article shows there is still a need to work together to build a church where—besides putting policies and programmes in place—the church should prophetically address injustice and seek witness to the partnership between women and men.

Author Biography

Benita P Nel, University of the Western Cape

School of Mathematics and Science Education
Education Faculty