Women in Ministry Leadership: The Journey of the Mennonite Brethren, 1954-2010

Book, 2019, 326 pp
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This book explores the journey of the Mennonite Brethren—an Anabaptist-Evangelical church denomination in North America—highlighting their attempt to find consensus in their convictions and practice regarding the role of women in church ministry and leadership. Throughout this complex and vibrant conversation spanning over 50 years (1954–2010), Mennonite Brethren have sought to discern together as a community how to interpret the Scriptures in the midst of prevailing cultural changes. No other issue has received this level of attention by Mennonite Brethren during the second half of the 20th century. Author Doug Heidebrecht examines how both conference leaders, as well as local church members, have actively participated in this significant conversation.

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“This fact-based book tells the story of the journey of the Mennonite Brethren Church grappling with women coming into ministry in the church. It details the times and places where conversations on the topic were held. The Mennonite Brethren Church worked hard at confronting the concern for finding the rightful place for women to serve. As the book shows, the Denomination was not always successful in expressing itself about the subject. But women are serving in the Mennonite Brethren Church in a variety of ways. As I read, I kept thinking—this is my story! This is where I come from and how I came to serve, even when I wasn’t sure I wanted to be a pastor. Thank you, Doug, for researching this story and showing how the Bride of Christ can fulfill its mandate to share the love of Jesus Christ.” —Lorraine Dick, pastor and former Board of Faith and Life chair

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