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Editor's Reflection: Autumn 2021

by Jeff Miller | October 31, 2021

The first Priscilla Papers of this year, early in 2021, featured the theme, “Global Egalitarianism.” I chose that theme because the issue’s authors and their topics span the globe. They address, for example, mujerista theology and Asian feminist theology, among other topics.

I am tempted to use that same phrase, “Global Egalitarianism,” again. But rather than create confusion by using the same theme twice in one year, I’m simply calling this, the Autumn 2021 issue, “Diversity.”

Why “Diversity”?

First, this issue’s authors are from all around the world. Médine Keener is from Congo, earned a PhD in Paris, and now lives in Kentucky. John Wijngaards was born to Dutch parents in Indonesia; he has lived in Rome, in London, in Hyderabad, India, and elsewhere. Anna Beresford is from Sydney, Australia. William Bowes is a PhD student in Edinburgh, Scotland. Spencer Boersma lives in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Second, these authors have a diversity of professions and roles. Médine teaches French and serves as Pastoral Care Coordinator at Asbury Theological Seminary. John is a Roman Catholic scholar who, among various other academic and pastoral endeavors, founded what is now called the Wijngaards Institute for Catholic Research. Anna is a chaplain in a psychiatric hospital. William is a mental health counselor. Spencer teaches theology.

Third, the articles arise from a wide range of disciplines and topics. Médine has written a character sketch of Emilienne Loubota, the first woman ordained in the Église Evangélique du Congo (Evangelical Church of Congo). John’s article combines historical theology and Old Testament scholarship. Anna brings a significant amount of historical background to bear on a New Testament passage. William dives deep into the Greco-Roman setting of the early church. Spencer has provided a sermon (as he also did for the Autumn 2020 issue) on a particularly challenging Old Testament text. Finally, I have written a book review of The Ministry of Women in the New Testament, authored by Dorothy Lee, a scholar and Anglican Priest in Melbourne, Australia.

In recent years, Priscilla Papers has been pleased to publish authors from a wide variety of places, including Kenya, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, and Taiwan—in addition to numerous authors from certain places already mentioned above (Australia, Canada, India, the UK).

Such diversity represents CBE’s fuller name, CBE International. It supports the opening sentence of CBE’s mission statement: “CBE exists to promote the biblical message that God calls women and men of all cultures, races, and classes to share authority equally in service and leadership in the home, church, and world” (italics added). And, to be sure, it represents our readership, which is global as well as ecumenical—crossing scores of denominational lines. Wherever you may be, we hope and trust you will be encouraged and challenged by this issue of Priscilla Papers.

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