There are books about ministry that are theoretical.

There are books about ministry that are practical.

There are books about ministry that are methodological.

RevGals coverThis is a book about ministry that is personal.

Deeply and beautifully personal.

Personal as in: persons bearing Christ in the particularities of life & ministry. Personal as in: intimate insights, both hilarious and heartbreaking, shared authentically by clergywomen. Personal as in: these women are friends and colleagues of mine, both IRL (in real life) and online. Personal as in: this is how ministry is and should be — in person, not in theory.

There’s a Woman in the Pulpit: Christian Clergywomen Share Their Hard Days, Holy Moments & the Healing Power of Humor is a book about the doing but most of all about the being of ministry, told through the particular experiences and lenses of clergywomen. I read this book — crying, laughing, sighing, reaching for another tissue — and I think with gratitude, “These are my people.”

And they are.

I first connected with RevGalBlogPals in 2009 when I began turning to their 11th Hour Preacher Party on Saturdays for preaching encouragement, and soon I joined their blogging ring. It is a blessing to be a part of the RevGalBlogPals network, a community founded in the days of pseudonymous blogging when several women in ministry connected with one another online and decided that they needed a name and a tshirt. Ten years later, the organization offers daily prayers, lectionary insights, blogging prompts, book reviews, continuing education opportunities, ministry wisdom, and more.

I’m proud of the books I’ve written and those I’ve contributed to, but There’s a Woman in the Pulpit is especially dear to me, because these pages bear witness to the community of RevGalBlogPals: a “gal”ship (as opposed to a “fellow”ship) that spans 4 continents, 20 denominations, 300 blogs, and more than 2500 Facebook group members — gals and pals who have given life to one another, held out faith for one another, and collectively emboldened women who answer God’s call to ordained ministry.

While my review of There’s a Woman in the Pulpit is hardly unbiased — I’ve written several pieces for the book — I gladly commend the book to you on the basis of the writing & stories shared by my colleagues. This is a book for every clergyperson (women and men), for every person who is exploring a call to ordained ministry, for every church that has called or that resists calling a female pastor, and for everyone who is committed to loving & supporting clergywomen.

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