Intellectual honesty on the issue of equality is rare and welcomed. When it comes to the mainline churches promoting both full equality of women and unity for the church, the idea of schism is politely swept aside. Yet, it was inevitable that progressive churches would have to draw a line for their ideas and separate from others in defense of those ideas.
On the Progressive Christian Channel at Patheos, the blog Theoblogy declares that the church should split on the issue of equality for women.
The time has come for a schism regarding the issue of women in the church. Those of us who know that women should be accorded full participation in every aspect of church life need to visibly and forcefully separate ourselves from those who do not. Their subjugation of women is anti-Christian, and it should be tolerated no longer.
Like those who admit that marriage equality for gays is merely a pre-text for the abolition of marriage, this honesty flies in the face of the general, feel-good tone from mainline churches that calls for unity, inclusion, and diversity.
This was inevitable and will further expose the inherent weakness of evangelical churches attempting the middle ground compromise of accepting feminist equality without allowing women to lead, though female headship is the natural result of feminist equality.
The full equality of women and men, however, is an issue that has long since been settled. Those who continue misogynistic practices in the church are not being faithful to the Bible or the Spirit of Christ, they are perpetuating retrograde and archaic beliefs and are doing great violence to women and men and the cause of Christ … Having grown up in a church that ordained women, allowed women to lead, and had women preachers, it is honestly shocking to me to continue to run into so-called “complementarians.”
For progressive Christians, equality for men and women is settled and fully implemented. For evangelical Christians, equality is also settled, but implementation is simply delayed in the halls of seminaries and on the shelves of bookstores.
If progressive thought is finally going to be intellectually honest and practice its own form of fundamentalist separation, then the evangelical church will have to either join them in some diplomatic, compromising way (separate in name, but not practice), or fully accept the counter thought that men and women are not equal. A rejection of bad terms for more honest terms would be helpful. This schism may actually be the only schism since the reformation that is actually good for the church.