Haruo wrote:And many, including our own pastor Judy Gay, began their careers with a bias against female pastors themselves, but were called out by God in contravention of their own prior beliefs and wishes.
Here is the story of one woman's call to ministry and the Pastorate
Ed: Quite true Haruo. When Trudy started seminary she had NO intention of becoming a pastor she was going for an M.Div in Higher education as preparation for Doctoral studies in Hebrew, so that she could teach in a Religious studies program in a state university similar to the on at the University of South Florida where she had graduated Summa Cum Laude. She wouldn't even talk about the possibility of teaching in a seminary because she did not believe women should be teaching ministerial students. A few pastors and Professors told he that "they " will never let you get an M. Div. at SBTS simply because you are female.
Although I thought those gentlemen where overreacting some what to the SBC takeover Id id not think that SBTS was the best place for her but she said "SBTS Is where God has called me to go. So in Late may of 1995, I parked a U-Haul outside of our apartment in Tampa and we loaded all our worldly possessions, put Chevy on a dolly, and headed for Louisvile.
Over the next three years she not only got her M.Div she became president of the student Ministerial association, with Al's blessing. Also she won the Borchart award as the middle year year student demonstrating the highest proficiency in Biblical languages. When she Graduated with highest honors in 1998 we went to Cincinnati and she entered the Doctoral program at the (HUC-JIR) Hebrew Union College/Jewish Institute of Religion. She became the Christian Student liaison with the Rabbinical students in the student government.
That fall I learned that the the North Central region of CBF was having its fall meeting in Bloomington Indiana (Home pf Indiana University). So we decided to attend, rather than take the shortest way via two lane st roads though Indiana I took the interstate to Indianapolis and then an older mostly 4 lane H'way to Bloomington. it was not till we where heading south out of Indy that I mentioned that the University Baptist Church where the meeting was being held was pastored by a woman, Trudy's response was then you won't mind if I stay at the motel will you. I said I would rather you attend the meeting but it is you choice and I think you would like to meet Carolyn Wetherford Crumpler (we had heard a lot of positive talk about CWC when we attended Seminole Heights in Tampa where Carolyn had been a member years before. With out another word about the meeting, when we got to the Motel and after watching some TV we both got ready and headed for the meeting at Bloomington's UBC. Trudy survived the experience and was impressed with Annette Briggs.
Some here may know the story about how the SBC Convention of Indiana dropped UBC when the elevated Annette to pastor form Min of Ed.
In the Cincinnati area we could not find an SBC church within reasonable commuting distance which was not anti CBF and we already had experienced 5 SBC /CBF churches in Florida and Kentucky with which we had each been quite content. We ended up at Lakeview Baptist an ABC-USA body on the far east side of the City but just over a mile from the triplex we had bought. Trudy became very involved with the teaching ministry there especially with children and their parents. Her first book which is near publication is dedicated to those parents and their children. After being at that point in School as a non traditional student year round for 8 years, she made a decision over my objection to Leave the doctoral studies at HUC-JIR. Immediately our pastor began grooming her for a new minister of education position he wanted to install but did not yet have a budget for. After a few moths the two of them where at a ministers meeting when a pastor from the other side of the metroplex learned that she was working for nothing and in a few days called and offered her the Minister of education position at his large Church in an upscale suburb. It was a great job but the pastor turned out to be quite authoritarian. Trudy had made it very clear that she had no interest in preaching but after a few months when it came his turn to preach at the"Back of the track" to the mostly Spanish speaking horse handles he called her in and handed the assignment off to her. When she protested he simply said you do like this job do you not and she said I have until now. I told you when we interviewed that I do not preach. He said Ok, consider it teaching. She took the assignment then and again about a month latter still protesting. And two weeks latter he walked into her office and said I have accepted a leadership opportunity at a Bible conference out of state and will be away the Sunday after next and I have scheduled you to preach both services. To clam her down when she told me about it I said lets go by you a new preaching suit you need something more dressy than any thing you have. She ended up with a Pin Striped Bakers Grey suit with both a skirt and slacks. In the day she preached her first church sermon she wore the skirt for the traditional service and Changed into the slacks for the contemporary service. She had stewed for two weeks but after the first service I knew she was hooked. That afternoon she said Ed I think I have to reexamine my opposition to women in the pastorate. Shortly after she resigned that position and we went back to Lakeview as members and she made application to the ABC-USA interim Ministry program as something of casting a fleece. In June of this year Burnt Hills Baptist Church and the Capital Area Baptist Association and ABC-NYS will be celebrating her first 10 years of Ordination.