AbstractEvangelicals are frequently perceived as conservative, for instance in their perspective on women. There is indeed a widespread evangelical hierarchical or complementarian theological view which objects to women in church leadership. There is, however, a growing egalitarian counter position, sometimes also referred to as “evangelical feminism”, which supports female leadership.
This article concentrates on the international missionary organisation Youth With A Mission (YWAM), which clearly endorses female leaders in formal statements. In YWAM Germany, however, women are under-represented in leadership positions. The article seeks to explain this under-representation, especially in terms of the role played by Scripture.
By means of interviews with leaders in YWAM Germany, possible answers were explored. Surprisingly, for an evangelical organisation, the interpretation of Scripture proved not to be a significant factor. Factors that do play a role are church background, the lack of female role models, lower self-confidence of women, family responsibilities, and the role of incumbent leadership. The latter appears to be the most crucial factor, since the incumbent leaders, who mostly are men, select and appoint new leaders. It is likely that in this they are influenced by stereotypical conceptions of the leader as male and are inclined to appoint leaders similar to themselves.
- Ownership of copyright in terms of the Work remains with the authors.
- The authors retain the non-exclusive right to do anything they wish with the Work, provided attribution is given to the place and detail of original publication, as set out in the official citation of the Work published in the journal. The retained right specifically includes the right to post the Work on the authors’ or their institutions’ websites or institutional repository.
Publication and user license
- The authors grant the title owner and the publisher an irrevocable license and first right and perpetual subsequent right to (a) publish, reproduce, distribute, display and store the Work in any form/medium, (b) to translate the Work into other languages, create adaptations, summaries or extracts of the Work or other derivative works based on the Work and exercise all of the rights set forth in (a) above in such translations, adaptations, summaries, extracts and derivative works, (c) to license others to do any or all of the above, and (d) to register the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) for the Definitive Work.
- The authors acknowledge and accept the user licence under which the Work will be published as set out in https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ (Creative Commons Attribution License South Africa)
- The undersigned warrant that they have the authority to license these publication rights and that no portion of the copyright to the Work has been assigned or licensed previously to any other party.
Disclaimer: The publisher, editors and title owner accept no responsibility for any statement made or opinion expressed by any other person in this Work. Consequently, they will not be liable for any loss or damage sustained by any reader as a result of his or her action upon any statement or opinion in this Work.
In cases where a manuscript is NOT accepted for publication by the editorial board, the portions of this agreement regarding the publishing licensing shall be null and void and the authors will be free to submit this manuscript to any other publication for first publication.
Our copyright policies are author-friendly and protect the rights of our authors and publishing partners.