Do we really need the Women of the ELCA? Or is it time to call it a day?
Recently a dear friend of mine asked me this question. Then she reminded me that women have numerous roles in the church, including that of presiding bishop, synod bishop, pastor and deacon. I suppose she thought Women of the ELCA as an organization was no longer needed to elevate the role of women in the church.
She also pointed out dwindling financial support to and dwindling participation in the organization. The conversation gave me a heavy heart.
The next day I went by the teacher’s lounge at lunch. I only saw women in there. Down the hall in a resource room, male teachers congregated. Both groups looked like they were enjoying the same-gender conversations.
It’s not that they don’t work well together. It’s just that they are different. Some interests are better shared in like company.
Sometimes, it’s the same way in the church. I can’t imagine not attending my women’s Bible study or enjoying the company of my Women of the ELCA group.
[bctt tweet=”I can’t imagine not attending my women’s Bible study or enjoying the company of women.” username=”womenoftheelca”]
Sometimes women need to be with other women to “support one another in our callings, engage in ministry and action, and promote healing and wholeness in the church, the society and the world” as it says in Women of the ELCA’s purpose statement.
Women supporting women means we stand up against human sex trafficking, domestic violence, racial inequality and other issues that continue to affect us today. If you check out Women of the ELCA’s website, you’ll see how we work for women in the church, society and world.
It’s great that we now have women in leadership roles in the church. But we need more. And we must stick together and continue to support ourselves and other women–with our dollars and our actions.
What does your Women of the ELCA group do to support women in your community?
Dawn Smith is in her second term on the executive board for Women of the ELCA. She lives in Midland, Mich., and is a member of St. Timothy Lutheran Church there. Read more of our blogs here.
Photo: Val Starr, director of discipleship for Women of the ELCA, center, chats with Elaine Scheer of Hawley, Minn., left, and Carol Fossum of Puyallup, Wash.