A thelogical assessment of women in proffessional church ministry in Kenya: the case studies of the Roman catholic, the methodist and the P.C.E.A churches.
James, Ruth Muthei
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This study seeks to give a theological assessment of women in professional church ministry in Kenya. The inquiry centered on the perception of women upon their position in the Kenya mainline churches, in particular, the Roman Catholic, the Methodist and the PCEA Churches. The study is an attempt to contribute to the struggle of the liberation of women and men from all kinds of oppression. It seeks to show in what ways women have been oppressed by religion-cultural forces. It also tries to show that it is necessary for women to liberate themselves from the religion-cultural forces that hinder them from developing themselves to the full so that they can contribute meaningfully to the development of the Kenya society. The main hypothesis tested in this study is that women in the mainline churches have been subjugated for so long that some are not even aware of it. They have come to accept their position as divinely ordained. It was observed that the structures of the three main line churches are themselves unjust to women. Very few women form the hierarchies of these churches. moreover, the hierarchies require blind obedience to the policies and rules that they lay down. This becomes problematic especially when the male clergy lay down rules of governance on issues that affect women and require blind obedience from those very women who may be more knowledgeable than them. It is argued in the thesis that the process of liberation cannot begin to take place unless one has attained self-awareness. Unless a people become aware of their system. The whole process of liberation necessitates one to make a critical analysis of one's situation. It has been noted that the majority of women in professional church ministry in the three churches do not really know their role . They are not even eager or encouraged to explore their talents and potentials and to venture into areas that have for a long time been considered the domain of men such as the ordained ministry. In the light of the above realization then, it has been concluded that there is need for a theology of liberation for women in Kenya. This theology will not only be liberative to women but also to men in the church and the Kenyan society at large.
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