Religion: Women at the Altar?

What the Christian church needs is some priestesses, says the Rev. Cyril C. Richardson, professor of church history at Union Theological Seminary. In the current issue of Christianity & Crisis, Episcopalian Richardson argues that through priestesses "the motherhood of the church can be given unique expression."

The old theological argument against such a thing, says Richardson, is "that women are incapable of Holy Order because they are in a state of subjection by nature. According to Aquinas, their subjection to men is due to the fact that 'in man the discretion of reason predominates.' " But Richardson reasons that a Christian virtue...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!