Black Women & The Image of God, Clergy Women of Color, Equality, Gender Equality for Women of Color, God, Women & Covenant, Rev. Tega Swann, Security & Gender Equality, Stereotyping & Women of Color, Women of Color Leadership

Does Leadership De-Womanize Women?

She was my sister, Elizabeth

She didn’t cook, clean or change diapers

She lead

She conferred with heads of state and presidents

She made decisions that affected families and community

She represented her country,

Her family

And her church

But she was not good enough

Because she was not woman enough

Culture required us to reject Elizabeth

Because she was not woman enough

Women cooked

And cleaned up after husbands and after children

But Elizabeth didn’t

So she wasn’t woman enough

Elizabeth was a leader

What culture said only men did or could be

Only men are allowed

Not to clean after anyone

Not  to cook

Not to change diapers

Even if their children’s diapers

Only men are allowed to lead others

Only men are allowed to make decisions for families and community

So was Elizabeth a man

Or was she a woman?

Humans are men and women

‘Leader’ is not a gender

But they said Elizabeth was not a woman

Elizabeth was not a woman

Because Elizabeth was a leader

Does leadership make us less human?

Take away our womanhood or give us manhood?

Is leadership an additional gender

That attaches to the male chromosome?

If not,

Why was not Elizabeth seen

As a leader

And a woman?

-Oghene’tega Swann


IMG_20180415_134050 (1)

Rev. Oghene’tega Swann is an ordained Teaching Elder (Pastor) in the Presbyterian Church(USA). She is a graduate of Trinity School for Ministry, Ambridge Pa, where she obtained a Masters of Religion in Church Ministry & Missiology. She is currently pursuing her Doctor of Ministry in Missional Leadership at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. In conjunction with the Holy Spirit and the beautiful people of Beaver-Butler Presbytery, she planted the first African American congregation in the Beaver-Butler Presbytery, Refreshing Springs Mission Church (PCUSA). A self-described spiritual mutt, Rev. Swann joyfully identifies as a PresbyCostAng (Presbyterian-Pentecostal-Anglican) in honor of the strains of Christianity that shaped and formed her discipleship. She has the honor and privilege to be the mother to one wonderful child.

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