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Is there still inequality between men and women?

Is there still inequality between men and women?

“When a great and decisive work is to be done, God chooses men and women to do this work, and it will feel the loss if the talents of both are not combined.”

July 26, 2016 | Bern, Switzerland. | CD-EUDNews, C. Cozzi,  D. Hochstrasser

The Midyear meeting 2016 of the Inter-European Region (EUD) of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church (Adventist) Executive Committee, held in Freudenstadt (Germany), last May 22-23, voted the following statement: “Voted to find, in compliance with existing policies, multiple ways to train and empower women for ministry and to encourage them to engage in all possible areas and levels of Church life and service.”

According to Denise Hochstrasser, Women’s Ministries (WM) Director for the EUD, this is meant to encourage the leadership of our Church and its institutions to find ways to strengthen and promote women in two ways: to start a journey into ministry and to get more involved in church business at all possible levels.

“The Seventh-day Adventist Church is called upon to represent Christ to the world. It is globally growing, and the need for leaders is great,” said Hochstrasser. "We need both women and men to fully represent the image of Christ," she continued.

Inspired by the affirmation included in some of the 28 Adventist Fundamental Beliefs (6, 7, 11, 14) that highlight  the equality of men and women, Hochstrasser quoted the American writer and co-founder of the Adventist Church, Ellen White: “When a great and decisive work is to be done, God chooses men and women to do this work, and it will feel the loss if the talents of both are not combined. (Evangelism, p. 469).

In fact, Christ always treated women with justice and equality. Both women and men need to be empowered and nurtured to meet their God-given potential.

“We want to motivate young women to be led by the Holy Spirit and to enter into Pastoral Ministry in our Church. As the majority of our members are female, I’m convinced that we need more female pastors,” affirmed Hochstrasser.

“When we say we are disappointed about the decision taken in San Antonio (at the Adventist General Assembly held in USA on July 2015, where a vote of no support for women's ordination was taken at majority) and that we want to support women,” suggests Hochstrasser, “we have to be careful to what signs we could send out if we do not consider the equal involvement made by women workers.”

Considering that in society, even today, the discussion of gender inequality is on the agenda, “we want to endorse the concept of a second-class society when it comes to employing women as leaders according to their engagement. Women and men in leadership positions should be treated equally in work, compensation and responsibilities,” concludes Hochstrasser.

We hope that the statement voted by the EUD Executive Committee will send out a signal for the church to fill the gap regarding the inequality between men and women.

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