In Focus: Faith and the Fight for Equality by Erin Wathen

“Jesus was a feminist,” writes Wathen (More than Words), senior pastor at Saint Andrew Christian Church, in this wonderful book about the many ways patriarchal Christianity affects women’s lives. “The Jerry Falwell set are clutching their pearls right about now,” she adds, with the same wry humor that permeates this intellectually hefty, unflinching critique of everything patriarchal, including the health policies of Mike Pence and misogynistic Bible passages. Wathen is frank in her assessments of the deep-set problems that she sees patriarchy causing in women’s lives—pitting women against women, creating “pink ghettos” (isolated women’s groups) within church communities, and combining with racism to further divide women who should be relying on one another.

Wathen looks at society and Christianity through a feminist and antiracist lens, mounting powerful arguments about why it’s essential to raise boys as feminists and how social media can be especially dangerous for women. Each of Wathen’s chapters ends with a set of questions for discussion, a helpful tool for teachers and professors. This trenchant book is a much-needed manifesto for 21st-century Christian feminism. 

" Honest real stories from Erin Wathen. This is what real faith in action looks like. Well written. Theologically responsible. A wonderful book for a book club or faith group study." — Kimi Yokoyama

" Erin writes with a candidness that provides a reminder to all people that human rights aren’t partisan and that we need to change the conversation regarding female empowerment. This book provides thought-provoking anecdotes and information that help to navigate the combination of being a good church lady and a feminist with the understanding that the two are not mutually exclusive. " — Saralyn Kingsolver

Erin Wathen serves as the Senior Pastor at Saint Andrew Christian Church in Olathe, Kansas, and writes the popular blog Irreverin on the Patheos network. She is author of More than Words: 10 Values for the Modern Family.