Monday, 1 September 2008

Hunks Rule

I was gutted to miss Jon Birch aka ASBO Jesus at Greenbelt and this is a beauty. There seems to be lots of chat on the blogosphere about 'women' / 'complementarianism' (women and men are 'equal' but different and have complementary roles - ie men in charge, women 'help'). I tried so hard then not to sound cynical, did I manage? Don't know what you think but it always seems worth having a bit of a think about something promoted by a group that just so happens to directly benefit from it. Now I know we are entering 'how we read the bible' territory here but hey this stuff either marks out Christianity from 'the world' or makes it sound not a little dark ages. I don't even know how much I want to open this one up. Whatever your reading of it all - blokes feel free to chip in to the authoritative debate, women don't worry your pretty little heads...


mark said...

I think I'll let some of the female bloggers comment before I add my penny's worth...

But, I would add one question. I can't help thinking this blog is pretty male (great re-vamp, by the way Schof). I don't just mean that men seem to blog on it more than women, but it seems a pretty male thing to do. Doesn't it work best for those men who don't have the social skills to chat for hours on the phone? (that was intended as a negative stereotype of men and women, so I think its ok!) I think I have some genuine concerns about having a group that doesn't really have any female leaders. How would a woman develop this kind of group? I'd guess it would be in more relational, 'real to life' ways.

Male leadership is so ingrained in the church that 1) women don't see themselves as church leaders and so don't take up leadership positions. I think this is worse in free churches, like Grace, where there is no 'official' leadership and so it is all dependent on people putting themselves forward. 2) the structures of church leadership are so male (hierarchical, power-orientated) that the genuine female stamp hardly leaves an impression. This I think is worse in the traditional denominations which have more structures, which are harder to alter.

So, what do we do about it? Invite one or two well chosen women into leadership? Allow the thing to develop in a very male way and expect any women out there to fit in? Anything else?

Sorry, that's a heck of a lot of writing for someone who started b saying he'd let the female bloggers blog first!!

rache said...

hmmm . . .

not sure I even wish to give that time of day, (thus (almost) avoiding a pointless rant)


to be honest getting my knickers in a knot over this one seems like a bit of a waste of energy

perhaps I should be more bothered about issues of trafficked women, female circumcision, domestic abuse etc

On a different note, not sure that blogging is necessarily excluding for women. I have read other blogs that are mainly used by women. Can only comment from my own experience but I would usually think quite carefully about something I write that can be read publically on a blog and this necessarily takes time which I find I do not have a lot of. Perhaps men are less risk averse in publically stating their views and thoughts than women?
I don't know. Always uncomfortable with these kind of gender generalisations, maybe is just individual personality.
As for church leadership I think we all collude, men and women alike with not challenging status quo of men in charge in this context.
Would be really interesting to start afresh and choose to have a women only (or majority) leadership team - call it something different - and then see what happens, see if people can think outside what they know/expect.

But what do I know, a mere woman?!

mark said...

Yes, you're right - blogging isn't a male thing. There are plenty of female bloggers out there. I think I was getting confused between 2 seperate questions i have:

1. I was trying to work out why Dee - and people like her- don't blog (and aren't likely to) and I'm sure its just personality and maybe something to do with being extroverts. (Do bloggers tend to be introverts?)

2. A genuine concern that 'engage' is being shaped by specific personality-types. (those into abstract thinking, introverts). Feeling the loss of the different voice someone like Dee brings.

Any other thoughts or suggestions?

I know you'll say that I should talk to Dee about it, but it didn't occur to me what I was actually thinking until I blogged it, which is the problems us introverts have!

Do I need therapy?!