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March 2018

Re: Sexism in the church today  
It's great that this has come out - but why did it have to wait until International Women's Day?
Christine Dickinson (via Facebook)

This is great but the problem is that the churches who are already inclusive will sign up to it but it won't reach those who still don't let women preach or lead. There needs to be more pressure put on our member churches to at least allow women to preach as visiting preachers to begin with.
Vicky Martin (via Facebook)

I agree with all but No. 7. Surely, not those 'who feel called' but rather those 'who are called'. Same for everyone.
Andy Ladhams (via Facebook)

Don't we understand as Baptists that a sense of call has to be tested by the local church and, if to accredited ministry, by the regional MRC? That process of discernment needs to be undertaken for anyone. Some men do not get their sense of call affirmed. The problem for women is that many do not even get to the starting gate because some churches deny the possibility of them having a call, let alone testing it. I think the wording is correct.
Simon Oxley (via Facebook)

It focuses on "in our church", "in our congregation" "in our pulpit", so does this mean that "in our community" "in our town" "in our country" "in our world" is excluded? or is No 8 supposed to cover all things, as long as it's for the gospel. So in the words of my usual school reports, did well but could do better.
Peter Potter (via Facebook)

Love this 8 point manifesto. So glad Baptists Together are promoting it. So many Women in leadership continue to be a great blessing and inspiration to me. Thank God that more and more Christians are realising that leadership/ministry is about gifting, calling and character rather than a person's sex #comealongway
Andy Glover (via Facebook)

"In His own image, male and female He created them." Equal AND distinctive.

Re: Creating a fresh momentum for change
I believe that the Bible is God's Word to us. His guidebook to life. Purely from my understanding of Scripture, I will not go to any service, in which a woman is taking the role of a man. I do not understand why God laid down His rules on gender, but I acknowledge, that if God has said, then no mere human can change God's teaching. Only God has the authority to do so. Not any pressure group, not any leader, or any Church body, and that includes the Baptist Union, who are only human beings, and not God. I fully value the role of women, just as I do that of men, but God has made us different, and we should rejoice in that, and accept that He knows best, and not try and change His teaching to us. I know I am opening myself up for criticism, but I believe, that as long as w e try and follow human rules instead of God's, we will continue to see a decline in the Church, instead of the revival, we pray for. As to the group name, Gender Justice Hub, it is offensive and wrong. There is no injustice in being male or female. It is what God has made us. We are the body of Christ. Let us live up to His standards, and not to the standards of the world.
John Gaines 

Re: People are meeting Jesus in hospital
Excellent article! Thanks for reporting on this great work in Chad. Moved to hear about Abdelhaziz.
Mark Roques

Re: 5 things I wish I’d known when I became a Christian 
Unfortunately so many churches think that they are bible believing when they only believe the parts of the bible that support their denomination/religion. Sadly for Joan it is not enough just to believe that Jesus is Lord and to pray, go to church, be kind to others etc. In order to inherit an eternal life, you have to believe that Jesus died, was buried and rose again to pay for my sin, so that I am righteous in the sight of God through what Jesus did. Praying, churchgoing, baptism etc has absolutely nothing to do with it. I hope that Joan somehow did believe this in then end, God alone knows. The lack of this gospel being preached in churches today is resulting in many people being loved into a lost eternity. This is the true measure of a good church - are they getting this message across. It is the ONE thing you need to know.

Re: Every Sunday is Mothering Sunday
Great article Fiona - but let's not assume that every family consists of a 'working' dad and an 'at-home' mum - this picture is at least 50 years out of date! Some families who come to church may have a working mum and a stay at home dad, or two working parents, or a single parent of either sex, or increasingly a family headed by two women or two men - though it seems unlikely that many of the latter would come to church since they would not expect to be welcomed. Let's not just focus on mums - or indeed assume they are young (I had my son at 41).

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