Categories: Communities

Evangelical Women Are Condemning A Southern Baptist Leader’s ‘Sinful’ Remarks

Evangelical women from the largest Protestant denomination in the U.S. are publicly voicing their dismay over an influential leader’s “inappropriate”…

2 years ago

Evangelical women from the largest Protestant denomination in the U.S. are publicly voicing their dismay over an influential leader’s “inappropriate” statements about domestic violence and women’s bodies.

Hundreds of women who attend churches affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention have signed a petition calling for “decisive action” in response to “damaging, sinful” comments made by Dr. Paige Patterson, president of the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and a prominent SBC leader.

The open letter, addressed to the seminary’s board of trustees, asks them to take a strong stand against “unbiblical teaching regarding womanhood, sexuality, and domestic violence.”

“The world is watching us all, brothers. They wonder how we could possibly be part of a denomination that counts Dr. Patterson as a leader,” the letter reads. “The Southern Baptist Convention cannot allow the biblical view of leadership to be misused in such a way that a leader with an unbiblical view of authority, womanhood, and sexuality be allowed to continue in leadership.”

Patterson has recently come under scrutiny after a 2000 audio clip resurfaced online in which he advised physically abused wives to stay in abusive relationships, “be submissive in every way” and try as hard as possible not to get divorced. He clarified early last week that at times, he has counseled abused women to leave ― albeit not divorce ― their husbands and report what was happening to the police. However, he said he still thinks that in cases of “non-injurious” abuse, women might choose to “pray through” the situation rather than leave their husbands.

HuffPost’s requests for comment from Patterson and the seminary were not returned. But on Friday, Patterson told The Washington Post that he couldn’t “apologize for what I didn’t do wrong.”

Some evangelicals’ overly broad reading of wives’ duty to submit to their husbands, coupled with the belief that divorce should be avoided at all costs, produces a “potent and literally deadly” combination that leads many women to keep enduring abuse, Katelyn Beaty, an editor-at-large at Christianity Today, told HuffPost last week.

“It leads pastors like Paige Patterson to justify or excuse domestic violence or to see it as the price of a godly marriage,” Beaty wrote in an email. “This is a gross departure from the biblical text as well as a grave departure from the pastor’s call to shepherd his members.”

Raju Jeelaga

It was not immediately clear who was responsible, but Macron’s political movement said.It was not immediately clear who was responsible, but Macron’s political movement said.It was not immediately clear who was responsible

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