School of Education
Doctor of Education (EdD)
church role, social construction, Southern Baptist, women's ministry
Christianity | Education | Practical Theology
Small, Melissa, "Exploring Successful Women's Ministry Employment: A Comparative Case Study of Two Churches in Virginia" (2015). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 986.
The following qualitative case study explored the phenomenon of successful implementation of a fulltime women's ministry staff position in Southern Baptist churches to provide foundational research for a best practices guide for successful implementation of women's ministers in churches. For the research, successful implementation of women's ministry staff was generally defined as fulltime staff position devoted specifically to women's ministry in a church. The use of interviews and focus groups provided information from the church leaders and women who were directly involved in the phenomenon. The setting took place in two Southern Baptist churches, located in the state of Virginia, that have successfully implemented fulltime women's ministry staff positions. Data collection included interviews, documentation, observations, and focus groups. The analysis involved coding and theming the data from the participant discussions, observations and documents. Findings revealed that the two churches had very similar experiences in pastor-led implementation of the women's minister positions. The churches both offered support of the role, which altered the view of women's ministry in the churches. Findings also revealed that women's ministers on staff do provide a greater resource to churches to identify and evaluate the needs of women in a church setting. Future research should include studies of other churches that have implemented women's ministers in order identify best practices for other churches interested in implementing women's minister staff positions in their churches.