Gather together 100 women from the LCA, ensuring that you have sampled younger generations, and listen to stories. Some no doubt will be full of praise, but stay a while and listen to the stories of hurt, being dismissed and being sidelined. Listen as they relate how men were lifted up for service and leadership, while their skills were overlooked in favour of more men.
It’s not just an LCA issue. Mainstream Christian religion still struggles with finding a place for women beyond that of the kitchen. Even those Australian denominations that do ordain women, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America still have ample stories of the glass ceiling for women.
Rev Lori Eickmann of the ELCA knows the story well, but she is grounded in the Bible and knows the discrimination does not arise from there.
From jannaldredgeclanton.com April 23, 2013
Church tradition has forgotten, ignored or repressed the feminine images of the Holy that are present in the Bible. The truth of inclusive language for the Divine is biblical. We risk impairing the witness of the good news of Jesus Christ when we try to keep God in a box. Also, female imagery for God is part of the Judeo-Christian tradition Woman Wisdom in the Old Testament and Jesus as Sophia’s—Wisdom’s—prophet or Sophia incarnate in the New Testament. Someone once said that the exclusive use of masculine names and imagery for God is the Golden Calf of this century. We must teach people that the Divine Feminine is reality and truth, and justice will flow. …
Lori’s story in Birthing God (Lana Dalberg, Birthing God: Women’s Experiences of the Divine) includes this excerpt: “I felt invisible, there in church. Maybe it was because I had children—one son and one daughter—and I was seeing the world through their eyes. I had to notice that the world offers a God who, as someone wrote, ‘is somehow more like my father, husband and brother than like me.’ I began to ache for all the daughters who couldn’t see themselves reflected in the Divine. I ached for them and for myself, because I knew we were created in God’s image, but mainstream Christian religion seemed unwilling to admit that” (San Jose Mercury News, May 2, 1998). (Lori’s story is found here)