Monday, July 20, 2009

It took you this long Jimmy Carter?

Jimmy Carter Leaves Church Over Treatment of Women

After more than 60 years together, Jimmy Carter has announced himself at odds with the Southern Baptist Church -- and he's decided it's time they go their separate ways. Via Feministing, the former president called the decision "unavoidable" after church leaders prohibited women from being ordained and insisted women be "subservient to their husbands." Said Carter in an essay in The Age:

In 1984, the Southern Baptist denomination first voted to not ordain women. Since then they have continued to take this stance. They have continued to take the stance that women are to be subservient to men.

So why so long Jimmy? Its been 25 years. Perhaps for Jimmy its been all the years of his work in couuntries that subjucation meant slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime. Perhaps he awoke to what it meant for his wife and daughter. I don't know and I do applaud him for leaving them now. But really what took so long?

After I left the Southern Baptist Church, it wasn't long that my dad left because of their stance toward women. Sadly my mom has remained in the Southern Baptist Church, which I still don't understand to this day. May more men and women wake up to what this stance toward women means and what it means about them, and what it means about being Christlike.


Kim Scites said...

a church member just sent me this link today.

Anonymous said...

Not sure what's different about this time but the New York Times reported Carter splitting from the SBC back in 2000. Maybe this was more official but I get the feeling this might be old news.

teachergran said...

Sometimes people stay with their "birth church" because they like the familiarity of the rituals, or the music, or .... As a life-long Presbyterian, I find myself frustrated with the official church's hypocrisy (applying a provision in the church rules about fidelity in marriage to gays and lesbians, but turning a blind eye when a minister cheats on his wife). I remember being surprised when someone years ago told me if she left the Pres church it would be over their treatment of homosexuality, however, I can now understand her perspective. Anyway, not as active a Presbyterian anymore, and I choose my congregations with an eye towards their tolerance, but haven't left the church yet, so am sympathetic with your mom and Carter and their choice to remain S. Baptists for so long.