Women's empowerment for leadership position within the Presbyterian Church in Cameroon : a missiological exploration.
This study is designed to explore the ways in which PCC’s missional engagement with Agenda PCC 2000 programme has effectively facilitated the empowerment of women for leadership. Under girded with a missiological framework, the exploration draws on insights from the concept of the Mission of God (Missio Dei) and the resulting understanding of humanity created in the image of God (Imago-Dei) and Koinonia that are used to analyze issues of mission, leadership and partnership. African Feminist pastoral theory and Feminist cultural hermeneutics are applied as theories to further guide the study. The study argues that man and woman are created with equal dignity and they both represent God’s purpose on earth. In the light of this theological understanding the study calls into question the PCC exclusion of women from senior leadership role within its ecclesial community. The research question of this study s: What are the experiences of women being empowered for leadership within PCC since the launch of the Agenda PCC 2000 programme? The methodology of the study followed a “mixed method approach” that involves collecting and analyzing more than one form of data in a single study as a design in addressing complex questions in an interdisciplinary research. The process of data analysis involved making sense of the empirical and non-empirical data to ascertain and understand the meaning of the data obtained through interviews. Through textual criticism and discussion with women sharing their experiences on empowerment and leadership positioning, revealed that some women are included in leadership positions but they are alienated by the patriarchal ecclesial power structures of the PCC. If the PCC is to be effective in its missional and ecclesial endeavours’ it needs to embrace a theology of partnership of women and men in leadership structures of the church. The study asserted that if equal space and equity are given to both men and women to participate in decision-making, then fresh approaches to leadership and understanding of mission will be opened. The study concluded that the PCC can do much more in balancing the gender gap if it follows the Trinitarian model of leadership by restructuring its male dominating pattern of leadership that permeates its administrative structures.