In Response to the Southern Baptist Convention’s Limitations on Women in Ministry

By Lisa Dunson

Acts 2:17 – And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on ALL flesh, and your sons and your DAUGHTERS shall prophesy. 

On Wednesday, June 14, 2023, the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) “voted to amend its Constitution to state that a church can only be a part of their denomination if that church ‘affirms, appoints, or employs only men as any kind of pastor or elder.’” The Alliance of Baptists, an organization birthed by Baptist visionaries who were theologically ahead of their time, took a bold step in 1987 and separated from the oppressive and restrictive theology of the SBC. 

The SBC claims their decision not to affirm women as pastors or leaders is biblically based and offers the support of biblical passages that project the sentiment that ‘women should be silent’ and ‘not exercise authority over a man’ while turning a blind eye and deaf ear to the multitude of passages that speak to the prophesying of women and the leadership of women in the church. 

We, the Alliance of Baptists, are saddened that the SBC does not recognize the important and vital role of women in pastoral ministry and in the leadership of the church. As an ordained Baptist minister, a woman and as President of the Alliance of Baptists, I want to affirm our support of women in ministry and in particular, the role of women pastors. We are clear that God calls and is still calling women to ordained ministry and pastoral leadership and do not believe anyone or any organization has the right to deny the call of God on any individual, regardless of their gender, gender identity or sexual orientation.

Lisa Dunson, President of the Board of Directors of the Alliance of Baptists

The Reverend Lisa Dunson is the President of the Alliance of Baptists Executive Committee and is a member of the Ministerial Team at Covenant Baptist UCC. She also serves as Co-Chair of the African American Women in Ministry (AAWIM) Global Engagement Committee and on the Executive Committee for the Potomac Association AAWIM.

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