Developing Intentional Ecclesiastical Mentors for Women in Ministry: “Encouraging and Strengthening Others” Open Access

Shine, Caroline (Spring 2018)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/nc580m69p?locale=en
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Abstract

Many clergywomen have devoted years of their lives to practical, theological and other professional training only to find themselves figuratively sitting in ministerial dugouts waiting for their names to be called or in outfields where few balls travel. A biblically based, “grassroots” type of intentional ecclesiastical mentoring program could help polish these women for more active and meaningful service. It is important that clergywomen affirm their likeness in God’s image by living out their God-given gifts and by protecting and memorializing women’s accomplishments and positive biblical stories for the sake of all clergy and laity. Because God presented a “themness” (male and female) intent, the integrity of God’s story is not holistically interpreted without the conjoined perspective of women’s voices, interpretations, and contributions. Patriarchal and androcentric biblical commentators and leaders have often been silent, oblivious, or dismissive of the scriptural narratives which display strong female-centered leadership and mentorship as judge, scholars, builders, prophetesses, benefactors, mothers, single women, wives ruling beside the patriarchs, and other leaders.

 

An ecclesiastical mentoring program can help clergywomen recognize their own strengths by identifying with the plights of the many strong, godly women in scripture. Consequently, this kind of mentorship will help motivate them for stronger and upward mobility, expanded ministry and community building, and by imparting confident leadership. While standard business mentoring models may provide some useful mentoring techniques, they should not be used exclusively to meet the needs of clergywomen because business models are not grounded in biblical interpretation and proclamation of the Holy Scriptures.  Developing intentional ecclesiastical mentors for women in ministry will strengthen and encourage women to support each other with a spirit of camaraderie for ministerial advancement while working cooperatively with their male colleagues. Successful results will strengthen the entire church body.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction.….………………...……….….………………...…….………………...………..…....1

2. The Need for Ecclesiastical Mentors…….….………………...……..….……………….………...2

The General Call to Mentor. …….….………………...…….………...….………………………….....5

The Issues of Women and Local AME Women in Ministry…….….………………...……....….….…7

3. Exegetical Studies: Biblical Mentorship Models…….….………………...……...…….……...….9

The Prophet Moses and Joshua…….….………………...……..................................………..……….11

The Prophetess Deborah, Mother in Israel, Who Mentored Barak…….….………………...……...…15

The Prophetess Huldah: Community and Women…….….………………...……...….….…....……...17

Jesus and Mary of Bethany…….….………………...……......….…...……………….……….....…...21

Reflecting on the Biblical Models of Mentorship…….….………………...…….....………………...24

4. Business Mentoring Models……….….………………...……..………………….….…...............27

5. Conclusion…….….………………...…….....….……............…………….....…...….…….……...30

6. Appendixes

A. Methodology and Mentoring Team Formation…….….………………...……..….............…….....32

        Survey Results

Table 1. Survey: Demographics 

Table 2. Survey: Mentoring Information

Table 3. Survey: Women’s Challenges in Ministry

Table 4.  Esteemed Women Ministers: The Characteristics

Table 5. Evaluation: Responses from the Mentoring Team’s

              Curriculum Trial Run 

B. Model WIM Mentoring Plan and Curriculum Synopsis…….….………………...……...…………38

Model Ecclesiastical Mentoring from A to Z

Table 6. Model Guidance   

9. Bibliography……………………….......……………….….………………...……………………..40

 

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