Contemporary Women’s Christian Theology

Ianthe Pratt (80+) is a scholar, the Co-ordinator of the Christian Women’s Resource Centre in London, and a member of the Newman Association. Below are extracts from a talk given to her local Newman Circle.

The main features of this theology are as follows, and as such have much to offer both men and women:

  • The value of diversity, the other
  • Equality, and the ethics of care
  • Power envisaged and practised as empowering and enabling, not controlling
  • Sharing in liberation theologies’ understanding of the importance of experience
  • The Trinity understood as a loving mutuality, which we should reflect in our lives
  • The interconnectedness of all creation, human and non-human
  • Connectedness leading to the seeking of balance and justice.

This sort of theological thinking is often called ‘Christian Feminism’ but these words seem to some very threatening, because they are wrongly identified with secular feminism, which is very different. This theology is based on the Genesis insight that women as well as men are made in the image of God. The above features listed indicate that it points to a loving and caring Christian community. It is related to liberation theology but differs in its emphases and in particular was in the lead in propounding a new vision of the Trinity as loving mutuality: it is a channel of hope equally for men as well as women, because it contains a powerful anti-patriarchal message.