24 Apr

Japan: A Tool to Raise a Movement for Women’s Ordination

JELC member Ms Kyoko Tawara [left] and Ms Kiyoe Narita from JLC, displaying the LWF Gender Justice Policy in Japanese, at the April 2015 WICAS meeting in Tokyo, Japan. Photo: LWF/WICAS
JELC member Ms Kyoko Tawara [left] and Ms Kiyoe Narita from JLC, displaying the LWF Gender Justice Policy in Japanese, at the April 2015 WICAS meeting in Tokyo, Japan. Photo: LWF/WICAS

By Ms Kiyoe Narita

In the Japan Lutheran Church, 70 percent of those who attend worship are women. It therefore means that women are the majority of servers in the church. They are happy to serve and give their voice at various committees.

However, we don’t allow women’s ordination. Sadly, there are still a few women who are against women’s ordination. They have had Bible studies about women’s ordination with pastors, who are against it.

I hope this policy will give them a clear vision of gender justice and it will prayerfully lead them to know that we [men and women] are all made equal, so that we will open the door to women’s ordination. The gender justice policy can be a great tool for raising a movement for women’s ordination for our church.

The local translation will be handed over at the women’s group gathering, where we will explain it in words that are easy to comprehend so that anybody will understand the meaning of gender justice.

Using some pictures and examples will be a good way to let everyone know about it, because for some people, the topic may sound aggressive, and for others, they simply haven’t heard the notion of gender justice yet. We will discuss the situations of gender injustice in the society so that church members will be aware of the importance of gender justice.

Ms Kiyoe Narita from the Japan Lutheran Church (JLC) is a member of the LWF Women in Church and Society (WICAS) network in Asia. She supported a group led by Ms Kyoko Tawara of the Japan Evangelical Lutheran Church (JELC) in translating the LWF gender justice policy into Japanese in early 2015. The LWF WICAS program supports churches throughout the Lutheran communion to popularize the GJP beyond the four official languages—English, French, German and Spanish.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this blog are those of the author, and not necessarily representative of Lutheran World Federation policy.