Can women preach in churches? People may answer this question in different ways, depending on their denomination or faith tradition. Some Christian churches allow for women to be ordained. In others, women are barred from any kind of teaching or leadership position at all. Many women working in faith-based ministries have likely heard such statements as “it’s unBiblical for women to preach,” “women should be silent in the churches,” or “women are to be subservient to men, as the church is to Christ.”
But what should Catholics make of the different, sometimes seemingly contradictory scripture passages about women preaching? What is the actual history of women preaching, from the early church on? And is there an official Catholic teaching on whether women can preach in churches or not?
On this episode of the podcast, hosts Emily Sanna and Rebecca Bratten Weiss talk to Rhonda Miska about the scriptures, history, and teachings associated with women preaching.
Miska is a preacher, lay ecclesial minister, writer, and spiritual director based in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota. She holds a master’s degree from the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry and spent several years discerning vowed life with the Dominicans, the Order of Preachers. She is the founder and co-convener of the Catholic Women’s Preaching Circle.
You can learn more about this topic, read some of Rhonda’s writing, and hear her preach in these links.
- “Should women preach at Mass?” by Jessie Bazan
- “How can preachers break through the noise of today’s world?” by Rhonda Miska
- “Two historians track down Jesus’ women disciples,” A U.S. Catholic interview
- “We need more women in the lectionary,” by Jean P. Kelly
- “A reflection for the second Sunday of Easter,” by Rhonda Miska
Glad You Asked is sponsored by the Claretian Missionaries.