Wednesday, August 02, 2006

if women ran the anglican communion ...

i get the feeling there wouldn't be this much of an uproar if the majority of movers and shakers (read gasbags and windbags in skirts) were women. i mean, when i read about all the communiques and letters to the archbishop of canterbury (THERE'S a job i wouldn't want) as if big daddy is going to make everything all right ... i get the feeling that a lot of these priests are running around with their cassock skirts over their heads, shrieking and screaming and stomping their feet!
i can say what i like now b/c i've got no vow of obedience yet. i'll settle down later when i have to say, "yes, reverend mother.
actually, i have been noticing something about the women priests i know. the more i meet, the less of them tell me they want to be rectors. i'm starting to think that the role of parish priest, as it exists now, does not suit women and the way we work. it's a model that was designed by men, for men, and despite the fact that women have been being ordained for over 30 years, there doesn't seem to be a lot of change. women priests seem to be expected to fill this mold that was created by and for men. i know when i thought about becoming a priest as a teenager it really didn't appeal. the pastoral part does, but the administration aspect, the fundraising, the being the boss in an officey/corporatey atmosphere does not appeal. i think it does not appeal to more women than just me. and i hear of women priests being scolded by other women priests for not becoming rectors, that there's a shortage of women rectors. however, i understand that pretty much nearly half of all seminarians are women now. so, if we have plenty of women being ordained, but not enough women rectors, perhaps it's the model of rectorship that's the issue.
maybe the episcopal church (815 that is) needs an idustrial organizational psychologist. oh, can you imagine? talk about cassocks up in the air and shrieking!


Marshall said...

Well, I suppose there would be something to say for that. An industrial psychologist could talk about why we do what we do.

Except the Alban Institute has been working on that for a long time. Sadly, that information doesn't get shared as widely as it might.

I've been a chaplain for most of my ministry - full or part time for 25 years - and part of what I've learned is that there's some (sometimes boring, sometimes painful) administrative work in any ministry. Yeah, I do get to be directly pastoral a lot. But, if I don't get my budget for next year completed, I won't have the opportunity. C'est la vie.

janinsanfran said...

Actually, I think is STILL mostly congregations refusing to call women as rectors. Assistants, sure, but rectors, no. That may have to do with how we see the role -- we build the definition of a rector out of what a male leader would do and be, not out of how a woman would lead.