Proto-feminism in the Early Church

RJ Natongam Sianturi, Fiona Anggraini Toisuta, Budin Nurung


This article aims to contribute to the transformation of the modern church, which still adheres to a patriarchal hierarchy system, into an egalitarian church. It also aims to provide an understanding of the proto-feminist movement in the Early Church, so that the modern Church today can avoid schism and women do not try to create new sects outside the Church that could be heretical.  This article discusses how the views of the Church Fathers in the Early Church helped to perpetuate the patriarchal hierarchy in the Church. The prohibition of women's involvement in ministry and leadership in the Early Church gave rise to the proto-feminist movement. Women started or joined sects or movements that honoured women's nature as full human beings and gave women leadership opportunities in the church. Women's struggle for gender equality, especially in the Church, has made them stronger, even though they are often considered heretics by the Church Fathers. Being labelled as a heretical movement or sect is not the main problem, the most important thing for women is to be accepted and included as servants and leaders in the sect or church.

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