Bartlesville woman to head Disciples of Christ church - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

Bartlesville woman to head Disciples of Christ church

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) _ Disciples of Christ became the first major U.S. Protestant denomination to elect a woman as its leader Tuesday.

More than 3,000 delegates of the Indianapolis-based church stood to register their ``Yes'' vote for the Rev. Sharon E. Watkins. When no one rose to vote against her, the room erupted in applause.

Some supporters sported T-shirts printed with her photograph. They wiped away tears as Watkins took the microphone and said: ``We are a church whose time has come.''

Adair Lummis, co-author of two studies on women in the clergy and a researcher at the Hartford Institute for Religion Research, called it a significant event. There have been women bishops, Lummis said, but never a woman elected to head a mainline Protestant denomination.

``Having a woman ordained _ as wonderful as it is _ doesn't necessarily lead to more women in positions of leadership,'' Lummis said.

Tom Jewell, the regional minister for Oklahoma, where Watkins, 51, is pastor of a church in Bartlesville, said the church's election of a woman as its leader for the next six years ``reflects a great readiness and receptivity to move into the future.''

The 770,000-member denomination was founded on the American frontier. It counts former Presidents Ronald Reagan and Lyndon Johnson among its past members.
Powered by Frankly
News On 6
303 N. Boston Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74103 is proud to provide Oklahomans with timely and relevant news and information, sharing the stories, pictures and loves of Oklahomans across our great state.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 KOTV. Oklahoma Traveler™ is a registered trademark of Griffin Communications. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.