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“The 21st century agents of change—across the world—are women,” Dr. Salim Munayer announced in a slow, deliberate, hear-this-if-you-don’t-hear-anything-else voice at a conference. Dr. Munayer is an Arab Christian who grew up in Israel, a renowned missiologist, and an authority on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and reconciliation. Such an audacious and unforgettably empowering declaration from such an impressive man sent a shiver down to my toes. Not of trepidation; it was rather a jolt of conviction, responsibility, and courage. Boom!

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No wonder it’s difficult for us to tell our stories. As women, we’ve been wired to protect those who harm us and stay silent to keep from rocking the boat.

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I’d like to present five steps for proper response to abuse disclosure in churches. I hope that churches facing similar situations in the future will have the tools and knowledge to do better.

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I became invested in creating an empowering space for female students upon noticing that many of my teachers and then colleagues—even well-meaning or brilliant professors—had never considered the unconscious and internalized biases that women experience in the classroom.

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Egalitarians believe the Bible promotes two senses of equality: equality of nature and equality of opportunity. Neither requires or even hints that women and men are or should be identical. Egalitarians don’t deny difference, we deny that difference is destiny.

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Does the Bible really body-shame women? Does it exonerate men when they objectify women? Proponents will say they don’t exonerate men. Men are still guilty, but women, the victims of men’s objectification, are guilty too. But there’s a chasm of difference between “men are guilty, period” and “men and women are both guilty.” 

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Studying hierarchical complementarians seemed a good choice for the project. A colleague, Patti, and I approached three of them, and they agreed to interviews. We invited them to study us in return, and they were surprisingly enthusiastic.

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Here are five strategies for helping churches create space for women in church leadership positions with the ultimate goal of ensuring equal opportunity for women at all levels of leadership. 

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Before doing something in your wedding because it’s a tradition, think about whether you are including it for the sake of tradition or because it means something to you. Either way, if you consider God’s design of equality in marriage to be your intention, then no tradition can hold sway over your marriage.

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Here are five women of color I've been fortunate to know who are making history in today’s church, many of them bold leaders within my own denomination, the ECC.

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