Saint Paul Meets a Quaker Lady

Partial photo of Saint Paul, a painting by Claude Vignon (1593–1670). Church of Saint-Séverin, Paris. Photo by Renáta Sedmáková.

Women should keep silent in the churches. —1 Corinthians 14:34

In the fulness of personal time,
1992 to be exact, the Friends Church
recorded me as a minister of the gospel.
It recognized my call to public ministry,
and the gathered body affirmed me publicly.
I thanked them all, but what I didn’t tell them
was my sense that St. Paul himself
had joined us. He was standing in back,
on the left side of the meeting house
by the rack of theological pamphlets.
He was clapping.
He was grinning from ear to ear.

Nancy Thomas

Nancy Thomas, along with her husband Hal, served alongside the Bolivian Friends Church for over 25 years. Her areas of ministry while on the field were in theological education and the training of local writers. She is poetry editor of Friends Journal.

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