Few Women Leaders in Cuban Church

By Davidson, Jane | Anglican Journal, May 2002 | Go to article overview

Few Women Leaders in Cuban Church


Davidson, Jane, Anglican Journal


Havana

ALTHOUGH women parishioners in the Episcopal Church of Cuba form a clear majority, the church will remain a male-dominated institution until there is a sea-change in attitude.

There are, at present, few women priests and no women's voices in the church's decision-making bodies.

That is the opinion of the only two women Anglican priests in Cuba. Ordained together in 1986, they remain unique in that there were no further female ordinations after that initial flurry -- if you can call two a flurry.

The ordinations of Rev. Nerva Cot Aquilera, a 64-year-old who looks 10 years younger, and Rev. Griselda Delgado del Carpio, who managed to win over an arch-conservative rural parish, have not been repeated in 16 years.

The two, who say they feel isolated at times and lament that there haven't been any new women ordained, point out that only now are there three female students in the seminary who are considering ordination.

The reasons for this are rooted in culture and tradition, in spite of the Cuban revolution's modern overlay in doctrine and belief.

"Women see ordained ministry as not easy for them to follow," said Mrs. Delgado in an interview. "A pastor gets support from his wife. The woman might get support, but she still has to do two things -- the house and the vocation."

Both women say there is a double standard for female ordinands. "Typically we wait four years to be ordained, the men wait six months," said Mrs. Delgado.

Female priests in Cuba, as well as female parishioners, are battling a culturally inbred tradition of male supremacy, both at home and in the church. This makes the greater numbers of women in the pews almost irrelevant when it comes to decision-making, say the two women priests.

"There is a lack of sisterhood among the women," says Mrs. Cot, who is married to the dean of the Cathedral in Havana. "As long as women are not aware they will give the power to the men." She pointed to a day of voting at the 93rd synod, where although the majority of lay delegates were women, they were still not nominating other women to sit on key decision-making bodies within the church.

Her proposed solution would be a series of workshops to help women take more of a lead, and to point out their historical contributions to the life of the church.

"Some of our women wish to study theology but feel insecure and scared regarding their future in the church."

She also wants the bishop to promote women more actively than she feels he has in the past, and wants a "diocesan strategy" to encourage women serving in the church -- not only as lay readers but also as potential priests.

"At the last synod, the bishop did not act inclusively," Mrs. Cot said. The church hierarchy, she added, is guilty of recognizing the gifts of women clergy -- "they are always recognizing our gifts," she said with frustration, "and never giving us a chance to be decision-makers.

"In all of these years they have never thought of us as archdeacons or chairs of the standing committee or any other leading decision-making role." (The standing committee, in the Cuban church, is considered the seat of power after the bishop. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Few Women Leaders in Cuban Church
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.