Episcopal Clergy invited to participate in unprecedented survey
Inclusion of both women and active and retired men is meant to give comparative data on careers, and men's needs for family leave as well as retirement. It is also meant to help the church understand the way the call to ministry is being lived out in 2008.
The survey is "the first to include and hear the voices of those in non-institutional and non-traditional ministries" in the same survey as those serving in traditional ministries, according to the Rev. Paula Nesbitt, one of two research consultants working on the project.
Those serving in such non-traditional ministries are "a growing constituency in the church" and researchers want to better understand the work of all ordained ministers -- "not just those being paid," said Nesbitt, a visiting associate professor of sociology at the University of California in Berkeley and the author of "The Feminization of the Clergy in America."
Nesbitt said her conversations with research colleagues show that the scope of the Called to Serve project is also unprecedented among denominations.
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Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal
Episcopal Church (TEC)
Posted November 30, 2008 at 8:27 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]
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1. robroy wrote:
The statistics page for diocesan percentages of female clergy is available for 2007. Found here. In particular, for all the domestic dioceses, 31% of clergy are female and 25% of senior clergy are female.
Those dioceses with 50% or more:
Eastern Oregon 77%
Navajo Missions 66.7%
North Dakota 50%
Albany’s numbers struck me. Also, the northwest is dominated by female clergy (Olympia has 42%, so they’re catching up.) I read a survey of CoE clergy a while back. Over half of the female clergy did not believe in the physical resurrection with male clergy much lower. Probably the new survey won’t address anything of that sort.
As Gene says: if you want acceptance of homosexuality, work for women’s ordination.
November 30, 10:49 am | [comment link]
2. A Senior Priest wrote:
Off topic comment deleted by elf.
November 30, 11:08 am | [comment link]
3. robroy wrote:
Oops, I was mixing up the upstate New York dioceses. Albany is 18% and Rochester is 52%.
Maybe our good Statmann could answer this: If we define a diocese to be “liberal” if it has a high female clergy ratio, then can we do an analysis of associating membership declines with liberality (the new membership stat page for 1997 to 2007 is also out)? For example South Carolina, the percent of female clergy is 4.9% and it has led the TEO. There are exceptions, Quincy which doesn’t have any female clergy has gotten clobbered.
November 30, 11:15 am | [comment link]
4. Dee in Iowa wrote:
I can remember when it was called “a calling”. Today it is a career track…...sigh
November 30, 11:50 am | [comment link]
6. Doug Hale wrote:
I need to take exception to the line of thinking above. You want to associate “liberal” with “women clergy.” But robroy’s statistic don’t necessarily bear that out. While some of the diocese mentioned might be liberal, a diocese like Eastern Oregon is not (at least in comparison to Massachusetts. There is another dynamic at work. Diocese like Eastern Oregon and Spokane are VERY rural dioceses and extremely spread out with little urban amenities. I suspect the reason women end up there is because they are willing to settle for it.
The other exception I have to the thinking above is the supposed connection between the ordination of women and gays. While the majority of women clergy may support the acceptance of practicing homosexuals, there are a significant number who do not, including my wife and others I know (and probably those in Albany). Granted there are those of you who cannot accept either, but that does not mean that everyone who accepts one accepts both.
Please be careful that you do not slip into rash generalizations nor jump to conclusion without examining the facts that are in front of you. It is simply not helpful to learning from each other.
November 30, 6:16 pm | [comment link]
7. physician without health wrote:
There are several female clergy who have served ECUSA parishes of which I have been a member, who are orthodox to the core, so at least in the case of ECUSA, female clergy does not necessarily equate with abject heresy. OTOH, I was watching a piece on women who have been supposedly ordained as RC priests, and at least from the sample they showed, the overall theology appeared to devaite dramatically from Catholic orthodoxy. The LCMS does not ordain women at all.
November 30, 6:51 pm | [comment link]
8. Branford wrote:
physican without health - there are no RC women priests. Any woman who claims she has been ordained is excommunicated by her actions.
November 30, 7:27 pm | [comment link]
9. Statmann wrote:
Robroy: So good of you to refer to me. Thank you. Yes, you can do a regression analysis with MEM% as a function of FEM%. Of course, MEM data have the problem of a lag effect and also some downright misreporting. Thus, one could do the same but with ASA% as a function of FEM%. As you have noted before I also have more “faith” in ASA. The big problem with regression is defining the “function”, i.e., linear vs some curvilinear form. It may be helpful to put FEM% into “classes” and use ANOVA. Statmann
November 30, 8:29 pm | [comment link]
10. Crypto Papist wrote:
Off topic comment deleted. This is not a thread about w/o.
November 30, 9:24 pm | [comment link]
11. Catharine Phillips wrote:
hmmm… no women responding here. I’ll bite. I look forward to responding to the survey and seeing the results. I suspect women are serving in a very wide range of ministry, perhaps wider than men. Whether this is liberal or conservative, I don’t know. For example, I am currently in the clinical psychology program at Wheaton College, after serving the Church as a priest for 25 years. Stood next to a female colleague at Convention this year who asked me what it felt like for the two of us to represent the conservative end of the spectrum. Hmmm….
November 30, 9:35 pm | [comment link]
12. robroy wrote:
Doug Hale+, I said correlation for Pete’s sake. Correlation means correlation. I already pointed out a very glaring counterexample of Quincy. Statistical correlation certainly doesn’t mean diddly for the individual. I merely think that it is a measure of liberality, albeit an imperfect one.
November 30, 10:10 pm | [comment link]
13. Doug Hale wrote:
I am sorry if I offended you. That was not my intent.
The problem with trying to do a “correlation” between women clergy/liberal dioceses is that there are multiple factors at work. As I touched on before, there is the issue of a diocese being spread out over a vast piece of rural real estate. More than 50% of the diocese you mention fit that definition. You also note that the Northwest seems to be overly represented in the group. What could that mean? Decline of membership in places like Eastern Oregon can be attributed to several other factors.
Even before we try to correlate a high ratio of female clergy and liberalism with membership decline, we would need to find out if there is a significant correlation between the female clergy ratio and the level of liberality of a diocese. The first problem would be measuring the level of liberality with clarity. What specific indicators would be used other than the acceptance of female clergy?
All I am asking is that we be careful about how we use statistics. It is so easy to jump to unsupported conclusions.
On the other hand, I could be wrong about this and there could be a solid correlation between women clergy, liberalism and membership decline. Let me know what you find.
December 1, 12:41 am | [comment link]
14. Larry Morse wrote:
Off topic deleted by elf.
December 1, 8:36 am | [comment link]
15. The_Elves wrote:
Three additional comments which were taking the thread off topic have been deleted by the elf.
December 2, 2:05 am | [comment link]