"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Friday, January 27, 2012

The Ordination of Women

The question of whether Catholic and Orthodox women may be ordained to the diaconate and priesthood continues to be debated, as I noted last summer. This month T&T Clark released a paperback of a book they published in 2008: Ian Jones, Kirsty Thorpe, and Janet Wootton, eds., Women and Ordination in the Christian Churches: International Perspectives (2012, 256pp.)

About this book the publisher tells us:
The growth of women’s ordained ministry is one of the most remarkable and significant developments in the recent history of Christianity. This collection of essays brings together leading contributors from both academic and church contexts to explore Christian experiences of ordaining women in theological, sociological, historical and anthropological perspective.  Key questions include: How have national, denominational and ecclesial cultures shaped the different ways in which women’s ordination is debated and/or enacted? What differences have women’s ordained ministry, and debates on women’s ordination, made in various church contexts? What ‘unfinished business’ remains (in both congregational and wider ministry)? How have Christians variously conceived ordained ministry which includes both women and men?  How do ordained women and men work together in practice? What have been the particular implications for female clergy? And for male clergy? What distinctive issues are raised by women’s entry into senior ordained/leadership positions?  How do episcopal and non-episcopal traditions differ in this?
Chapter 3 will be of especial interest: "The Ordination of Women from an Orthodox Perspective" by Katerina Karkala-Zorba.

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