“It is important to build bridges to society, to show the biblical response, and to be heard”, said the coordinator of the working group on Women of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance.
The Faculty of Theology of the Baptist Union of Spain (UEBE) has officially included for the first time in the content of its theology studies an intensive course on feminism from a biblical perspective.
It was held in the chapel of the UEBE Faculty of Theology in Madrid, and had as speakers two specialists in the area.
One of them was Asun Quintana, a former student of this seminary and evangelical pastor in Madrid, who has a long career on behalf of women through the Seneca Falls platform (of which she is the founder) and the “Women and society” working group of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance.
She was joined by Miriam Araujo, PhD in Health Sciences from the University of Huelva, researcher and lecturer at the University of Seville, who is a specialist on matters of end of life and gender. She also has a degree in theology (Faculty of Assemblies of God in Córdoba).
Around forty people, including students, teachers, and open applicants, participated in an extensive four-hour presentation, with a discussion, based on the Bible as the ultimate guide, responding to today's burning questions about feminism.
The speakers talked about ‘Christian feminism’, whose greatest exponent is Jesus, as opposed to ideological trends that have been added and integrated into the concept of feminism with the latest waves of ‘new feminism’.
For Quintana, these evolution of the public discourse on equality between men and women has caused the term feminism to be condemned in many Christian circles, “throwing the baby out with the bathwater". Believers must rescue the true concept of feminism, she said, as a principle of equality that emanates from biblical principles, and especially from the message incarnated in the Gospel by Jesus Christ.
“Evangelical leadership has to be an example in the equal treatment of women” and “it is no less important to build bridges to society on these key issues, to show a biblical response, and to be heard”, she added.
José Moreno Berrocal, Reformed evangelical pastor, writer and president of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance's Theology working group, told Spanish news website Protestante Digital that “when Christianity has had influence in history, the position of women has improved significantly”.
However, “where Christianity is barely perceptible or is rejected, women are treated unfairly. Where Christianity departs from the Bible, as was also the case at many points in the Middle Ages, women, too, are socially relegated to the background”.
There is a growing need for an in-depth approach to the theological, historical and social perspectives of feminism, said Moreno, understanding that this is one of the main issues shaping cultural paradigms in Europe today.
Other evangelical entities and seminaries have opened windows to the debate on feminism with the Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other.
The Faculty of Theology of the Assemblies of God in La Carlota (Córdoba), has created a space for courses on feminism, which was presented in January 2023, with a conference given by Asun Quintana, and the professors of the Faculty Ángel Bea and Antonio Simoni.
Meanwhile, in Barcelona, the Evangelical Centre for Biblical Studies (CEEB) and the Evangelical Bible School also organised an online course on feminism and the Bible, taught by several qualified speakers from mid-January to April 2023.