Pilgrim Pathways: Notes for a Diaspora People

Incarnational Discipleship

Pioneer Evangelical Feminist Nancey Hardesty Dies: Rest in Peace

In 1974, the evangelical publisher, Word Books, published a groundbreaking work, All We’re Meant to Be: Biblical Feminism for Today by Nancey A. Hardesty and Letha Dawson Scanzoni.  My mother, an evangelical Methodist and a budding feminist in 1974, brought home a copy.  About a year later, I read it and it changed my views on the equality of sexes (in home, church, and society) forever.  Word Books eventually went out of business, but two other publishers published new editions of this classic and Hardesty and Scanzoni, together with their friend, Virginia Ramey Mollenkott, went on to found the Evangelical Women’s Caucus which later became the Evangelical and Ecumenical Women’s Caucus and helped to publish Daughters of Sarah from 1974 to 1995–the first journal for Christian feminists.

Today, after 2 years battling pancreatic cancer, Nancey Hardesty has passed away.  The Christian Century has more details here.

Although my daughters have grown up in a very different environment (their mother is an ordained Baptist minister, our pastor is another Baptist minister and they have known numerous women preachers and theologians, as well as living in a world where more and more countries are led by women and 3 of the last 4 Secretaries of State in the U.S. have been women), I have still urged them to read All We’re Meant to Be in their teens.

I will mourn Hardesty’s passing, but even more I will mourn that U.S. evangelicals are less open to biblical feminism TODAY than they were in the 1970s–or so it seems.


May 4, 2011 - Posted by | obituaries


  1. I am intrigued by the title of Nancey Hardesty’s book, especially this week as a matter of synchronicity. The Bishop of London quoted Catherine of Siena in his homily at the royal wedding: “’Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.’ So said St Catherine of Siena whose festival day it is today.”

    Here we have the voices of two women proclaiming that we should not stop until we have fully unfolded into who we were created to be.

    Comment by Charles Kinnaird | May 4, 2011 | Reply

  2. Pls is there no university offering peace and conflict studies in france? Pls i need a francophone country to do this

    Comment by haruna ismaila | April 29, 2012 | Reply

    • I haven’t found such a program in France, but I’ll check the web and see if I can update the list. I can’t influence Francophone universities to begin offering such courses, but if I lived in one, I would petition for the creation of such a program.

      Comment by Michael Westmoreland-White | April 29, 2012 | Reply

    • If you check the peace and conflict studies link, you’ll find that I have updated it and found 2 universities in France with related programs. Best I can find so far. I am hindered in my searches by the fact that I don’t read French, just English, Spanish, Greek, & German (badly). Sorry.

      Comment by Michael Westmoreland-White | April 30, 2012 | Reply

    • I have updated the list today. It shows 2 French universities with related programs. I’m not sure, but I think that the Canadian universities offer all their programs in both English and French and I would especially bet this is true of the one in Montreal. Contact them directly to inquire. All the best in your search.

      Comment by Michael Westmoreland-White | April 30, 2012 | Reply

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