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Book Recommendations

The books below are linked to Worldcat which will tell you the closest library that owns a copy. You will find links there to purchase the book from various booksellers. You can also recommend that we add a book to this list using the button below.

Empowering Women for Service in the Church

These books offer support and practical steps for removing barriers to women's empowerment for God-ordained service at home and in the church.

When Women Lead: When Women Lead: Embrace Your Authority, Move Beyond Barriers, and Find Joy in Leading Others

Author: Carolyn Moore

Rev. Dr. Moore adds something to the conversation of women in church (or any) leadership by positing that we unfairly position women for failure when we fail to notice that they lead differently and in different situations than men. If we force molds written only for men, we fail these women in empowering them to the best extent possible. With much scholarship and data to back her up, she offers a better way. 

Together in Ministry: Women and Men in Flourishing Partnerships

Author: Rob Dixon


One of the best resources we have found so far, this book offers practical steps for developing mixed gender ministries.

Buried Talents: overcoming gendered socialization to answer God's call

Author: Susan Harris Howell

After describing the messages girls absorb from our culture that hinder them from pursuing their call as adult women, the book provides direction for overcoming these barriers. An important book for both men and women.

Redeeming Power: understanding authority and abuse in the church

Author: Diane Langberg

A biblical examination of the use and misuse of power in the church

On Repentance and Repair: Making Amends in an Unapologetic World

Author: Danya Ruttenberg

A rabbinical process for repentance with much to teach us today. Helpful for deciding how to make repairs for past sinful behaviors marginalizing women.

God's Protection of Women: when abuse is worse than divorce

Author: Herb Vander Lugt

A biblical argument in favor of divorce in cases of abuse. The link allows you to download a free copy.

Athena Rising: how and why men should mentor women

Authors: W. Brad Johnson, David Smith

Tools, techniques and reminders for how and why men should mentor women. Note that the military language and some assumptions of men’s (weaponized) incompetence are off-putting, but this book offers many sound principles. You can get a list of the book's principles here.

Developing Female Leaders: Navigate the Minefields and Release the Potential of Women in Your Church

Author: Kadi Cole

Great help particularly for men who want to develop women leaders. However, the wonderful material is mixed in with some problematic opinions or advice.

Biblical and Practical Support for Women in the Church

These books analyze both the Bible and US culture around the topic of empowering women in the church.

I'm Still Here: black dignity in a world made for whiteness

Author: Austin Channing Brown

A first-person description of the white evangelical church's ongoing barriers to the beloved community.

Liberating Tradition: women's identity and vocation in Christian perspective

Author: Kristina LaCelle-Peterson

This book provides biblical support and discussion for a liberating place for women in ministry and marriage. Required reading for any pastor who works in a denomination that ordains women. See a detailed review here.

Imagining Equity: the gifts of Christian feminist theology

Author: Karen Strand Winslow

A deft reclamation of the word "feminist" and an analysis of the place of the marginalized in the Bible that undergirds the empowerment of women today.

This Holy Calling: Daily Wisdom from Women in Ministry

Authors: Wesleyan Holiness Women Clergy

Six months of daily reflections by and for women in ministry.

Past and Present

These books offer histories, both recent and from early Christianity, to help us understand the roles women took in the past and how our current church culture was shaped.

The Making of Biblical Womanhood: how the subjugation of women became gospel truth

Author: Beth Allison Barr

The fairly recent history of the marginalization of women in the church

I Bring the Voices of My People: a womanist vision for racial reconciliation

Author: Chanequa Walker-Barnes

A clear-eyed look at the history of racism in the evangelical movement, its effects on African-American women in particular, and their importance in the journey towards reconciliation.

Stained Glass Ceilings: How Evangelicals Do Gender and Practice Power

Author: Lisa Weaver Swartz

For Free Methodists in particular, this comparison of the practices of gender and power at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary with those at Asbury Theological Seminary reveals some of the less overt patterns that continue to bar women from flourishing in the FMC.

Jesus and John Wayne: how white evangelicals corrupted a faith and fractured a nation

Author: Kristin Kobes Du Mez

The history of the worship of power and masculinity in white evangelical churches.

Daughters of the church: women and ministry from new testament times to the present

Authors: Ruth Tucker, Walter L. Liefeld

Setting the record straight on the vitality of women's leadership from the early church to today.

Nobody’s Mother: Artemis of the Ephesians in Antiquity and the New Testament

Author: Sandra L. Glahn

Dr Glahn has made much sense out of  Paul’s inexplicable statement in Timothy about women being saved through childbirth. She also explores the reasons Paul probably included the verses on women learning in silence. Drawing on evidence regarding the Artemis cult and its effects in Ephesians, she presents an excellent case.

Biblical Interpretation and Theology

Particularly important for those who preach, these resources raise awareness of the importance and pitfalls of certain texts and theologies for women's Shalom.

Womanist Midrash: a reintroduction to the women of the Torah and the throne

Author: Wilda Gafney

Using her sanctified imagination, the author gives us stories, prayers and laments for each women of the Hebrew Bible, named and unnamed.

She Who Is: the mystery of God in feminist theological discourse

Author: Elizabeth A. Johnson

A biblical theology of God from a woman's perspective.

Women's Bible Commentary, 3rd edition

Authors: Carol A. Newsom, Sharon H. Ringe, Jacqueline E. Lapsley

Written by women scholars, this commentary offers the same interpretation of the Bible as any other, but does not omit to discuss aspects of the text of relevance to women.

Also Recommended:

  • Maelstrom - Carolyn Custis James

  • The Cross and Gendercide - Elizabeth Gerhardt

  • Women, Abuse and the Bible - Catherine Clark Kroeger and James R. Beck

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