Are things getting any better for women in the church?

"VIolence Against Women" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

“VIolence Against Women” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

Last year was an amazing year for feminism. This is one of the issues I address frequently. Probably at least once a week I draw a cartoon investigating developments and the discussions.

If you want to read a great article summarizing the developments for feminism in 2014, read Rebecca Solnit’s, Listen Up! Women Are Telling Their Story Now! In fact, that article inspired my cartoon today.

Anita Sarkeesian says that one of the most radical things you can do to help women who have been harassed is to “actually believe women when they talk about their experiences”.

Actually, we’ve seen this happen here on this blog. It still amazes me how many women share their very negative church experiences at the hands of its so-called leaders, only to have them ridiculed, dismissed, or silenced. The church with its dogma is one of the guiltiest cultures for violence against women. In fact, for me it has been enlightening and discouraging because, yes, things really are that bad. However, on the other hand, women are speaking, holding their truths and sharing their stories. I’m getting the impression more people are listening and believing. Look out!

But as Solnit suggests, we are beginning to see shame returned to its rightful owners, that is, those who commit, protect or perpetuate the violence, rather than the victims.

The sad thing for me is that I know men who, if they saw my post today, would roll their eyes and say it’s not true, that this violence against women thing is all a conspiracy theory concocted by militant feminists in order to take over the world. Or something like that. In many ways, I see the church symbolically rolling its eyes as well.

The church must start paying attention to this growing development and opening itself up for change.

[Even though this blog, nakedpastor, is a place where you can share your story uncensored, The Lasting Supper is a very safe online community where you will not only be heard, but believed and supported. One of the places where we talk about this all the time is in our secret and confidential Facebook group. I invite you to join us HERE.]


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