Ministry Trends & Patterns – Part II

Tatoosh  from Mazama-2

Interesting, isn’t it, that “men’s ministry” events seem to tip toward the athletic, outdoorsy, active, competitive side of the scale?  Whereas ministry programming for men focuses on themes like “iron sharpening iron,” warriors, band of brothers, etc., women’s programming focuses on teas, brunches, “Proverbs 31” studies, and… well… apparently whatever doesn’t involve competition, strain, sweat or getting dirty.

What HEvencense would like to know is: where do women go who dislike spring teas, knitting, quilting and needle pointing and “frou-frou”?  Where do women go who are competitive, active, outdoorsy and athletic?  What about ladies who gravitate toward rock-climbing, fishing, hiking, white-water rafting, basketball, long-distance running or intellectual pursuits?  What about women who are professors, doctors, lawyers, engineers, journalists, small business owners or those with corporate executive expertise?  Are they being ignored, neglected, and excluded or… invisible?

In the last two weeks, “special ladies events” at our church have included a “bulletin board-decorating” and a “holiday card-making party.”   Wow.  (Wake me when it’s over.)

How many Christian women participate in this kind of “women’s ministries” programming – bored to death – because nothing else is available?  How many Christian women leave the church because the “Suzy Homemaker” brand of “women’s ministry” doesn’t appeal to them, or isn’t relevant (as may be the case vis-a-vis some young career women)?  More to the point: Is the Church losing educated, skilled, articulate professional women due to a flawed or a one-dimensional gender paradigm?  Does “women’s ministry” – and the gender stereotypes upon which some of it stands – need to change?  If so, how?

What would you like to see on next year’s “women’s ministry” slate?


For more, see Not Your Mother’s Church Social and Women: Mission Critical.

Up next: Christmas! ‘Tis the season!


For 2010: a series on “Simple Church” and some questions for the church – and everyone else – spring-boarding off of J. Lee Grady’s, 10 Lies the Church Tells Women.


2 Responses

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