Some Standard Wisdom for the Proactive Church Lady

Having highlighted the seedier side of Stone-Campbell views on the prospects and methods for evangelizing the newly freed slaves, let us turn now to a more egalitarian note. This comes from the Querists’ Drawer where Errett and his editorial staff answered questions on belief and practice sent in by readers. Here Errett comes to the defense of some women fed up with their unmotivated fellow congregants.

“We met today for social worship and the elder no being present, the deacon and the brethren would not lead in worship; the sisters went ahead and had singing, prayer and Bible reading. Did we do right? Would it have been right for a sister to have led in the breaking bread?”

In our judgment, you did just right. And if you had added the Lord ’s supper to observances, we should still say you did right. If a company of sisters in a neighborhood in which no brethren lived were to assemble for reading and prayer, what would there be to hinder their observance of the Lord’s supper? And if brethren are present and refuse to lead in the worship, no one can charge that the women usurp authority over them, if they go forward in the performance of duties from which the men shrink. Certainly, such men should never complain because the women outstrip them in zeal and faithfulness.

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