Counseling Department


Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Lisa Sosin


Clergywomen, United Pentecostal Church International, UPCI, Women Pastors


Clergywomen make up less than four percent of the licensed ministers of the United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI). This phenomenological inquiry explored how female pastors of the United Pentecostal Church International described their experience of being a female in a profession where men significantly outnumber women in both pastoral and leadership positions. In an attempt to identify factors to guide clergywomen in a truer sense of what it means to be a woman in ministry, eight women serving in pastoral ministry were interviewed. After data analysis of transcribed interviews and participant journals, five findings emerged. The five main findings were that the participants a) were sustained by a sacred call, b) embraced a female distinctiveness in ministry, c) had a personal definition of success, d) surrounded themselves with a network of support, and e) pursued professional development. The themes of this study were found to corroborate previous research findings. Finally, future recommendations for both clergywomen and the denomination were provided.