"Would you have a woman lead a church?"
"Well, any woman."
"Oh, any woman. No."
"Well, would you have any man lead?
"What if you thought he was manipulative or domineering, more interested in pushing their own issues than building Gods people? How about if he was insistent that he should lead because of his gifting and ability, yet continually struggled against existing church leadership, even causing divisions?"
'Okay, then, no. There's more to church leadership than just ability or training, and you have to take into account character and calling. And then the church needs to be willing to follow them too....."
"Exactly what? And why don't you just answer my question?!"
"You wouldn't have every man that just came out of bible college lead a church."
"And even though you might be inclined to think that with all that training, gifting, expectation, zeal for God, they might not be the right ones to lead your church?"
"Yeah, but I'm losing how this relates to whether or not you would have women leading churches."
"You recognise that leading a church is more than just being at the front. There is a specific calling, a humble character, a servant heart, a gifting beyond their gender. You need to know that God has called THEM and given them grace for caring oversight of His people, rather than managers or directors that will casually use them."
"Yeah, I guess."
"But when it comes to a woman, you want me to make a sweeping statement about them - and every woman that says she should lead - based solely on their gender. Suddenly, who they are, what they do, their divine spark and calling, the grace of God available to them, that's all irrelevant..."
"No, it's not irrelevant..."
"But I can ignore all of that in order to appear feminist or misogynistic on the basis of their gender. Whereas your male leader has to have a very detailed and specific calling: walking the walk and eloquently talking the talk before they are acceptable, my female leader should be evaluated on the basis of her womanhood.
"So, you would you have a woman lead a church?"
"What's her name?"
"She hasn't got a name! She's just a woman leader..."
With credit to Graham at Leaving Munster whom I stole the form of this 'conversation' from and thanks to Marc for making me notice it.