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Saddleback Church Ordains Three Women as Pastors despite Denomination's Restrictions

Milton Quintanilla | Contributor for | Monday, May 10, 2021
Saddleback Church Ordains Three Women as Pastors despite Denomination's Restrictions

Saddleback Church Ordains Three Women as Pastors despite Denomination's Restrictions

Last week, Saddleback Church, a California-based megachurch led by Pastor Rick Warren, announced its first ordination of three female pastors.

According to The Christian Post, the announcement was made on the church's Facebook page last Thursday.

"Yesterday was a historic night for Saddleback Church in many ways! We ordained our first three women pastors, Liz Puffer, Cynthia Petty, and Katie Edwards," said a post shared to the Saddleback Church Facebook page. "We commissioned three new elders, Anthony Miller, Jeremiah Goley, and Jason Williams! And we appointed Pastor Johnny Baker as the new global leader of Celebrate Recovery!"

Saddleback Church is the largest church affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, which holds to the view that women are not to be ordained as pastors because God has called men and women to different roles.

Owen Strachan, a theology professor at Grace Bible Theological Seminary, commented on the post, describing the ordination as an example of "unbiblical developments," adding that the "time to leave is NOW."

"Now is the time to leave and find a sound congregation. Do not delay. There is no spirit of competition in what I write here; what Saddleback is doing grieves me, and I have no doubt grieves many in the congregation," he argued.

"Churches that affirm women pastors are opposing the Word of God, and opposing the Word of God means opposing God himself," Strachan added.

To make his case, Strachen cited the apostle Paul's words in 1 Timothy 2:9-15, which features the verse, "I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet."

According to, this view is a part of complementarian ideology. Complementarianism asserts that men and women were made to fill different but complementary roles. Under this ideology, women are restricted from serving in certain church leadership roles, such as the pastorate. Egalitarianism, on the other hand, asserts that men and women were made as equals and can assume the same leadership roles. Under egalitarianism, women are permitted to serve in ministerial positions.

Photo courtesy: ©Saddleback Church Facebook

Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.