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Evangelicals ‘less accepting' of female leadership

A RECENT study by the Barna group found that American evangelicals are less accepting of women leaders than their protestant counterparts.

The research found that 79 per cent of those surveyed are comfortable with a woman in the pulpit, with more women than men (84 per cent as opposed to 75 per cent) expressing this view. This figure falls drastically among evangelicals, with only 39 per cent happy with women in ministry.

Among practising Christians in general, 62 per cent were accepting of female leadership within the ministry.

Barna Group editor-in-chief Roxanne Stone said:

“As evidenced by the research, the issue of women in leadership is a complicated one for many evangelicals.


“There is a long history among evangelicals of emphasising motherhood and family as a woman’s primary calling.

“While the broader culture has shifted away from this, evangelicals seem more reluctant to do so. This reluctance is often tied to a scriptural reading that insists men are to occupy leadership positions within the family and church and, by extension, society.”

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