International Journal of

Arts , Humanities & Social Science

ISSN 2693-2547 (Print) , ISSN 2693-2555 (Online)
Can they Speak Louder among Men? Women and Leadership Positions in Southwest United Methodist Church, Gainesville/Florida

Abstract


Male social dominance is well documented toward the history of humankind. The male domination draws women in a position of subordination. However, gradually it changed through a long feminist movement activism. Nerveless, in many religious groups and denominations, female subordination is still the rule for several reasons including the (mis)interpretation of the Holy Scriptures and local understanding of male-ness and female-ness that supports the dominance of the first and the subordination of the latter. This study conducted in a small Methodist congregation in Gainesville Florida examined the roles of women and their perceptions regarding the roles they played. Using a fieldwork of six months mixing participant observation and in-depth interviews, the research concluded that in this congregation, there was a culture encouraging the emergence of women leadership. Women were pastors, lay leaders, directors of departments, and chairs of committees. Most of the mentioned positions helped women leadership to develop in this congregation. Finally, it can be noted that this Methodist church is a religious model for female leadership and a source of inspiration to other religious institutions where women are maintained in subordination position using Holy Scriptures.