What Do Women In Ministry Look Like?

CCS alumni Kimiko Karpoff and Tracy Fairfield are featured in a calendar meant to challenge popular stereotypes about women in ministry. The Calendar Revs features United Church women clergy engaged in activities such as protest marches, sporting high heels, hunting and belly dancing. Proceeds from sales will support the Malala Fund in support of girls’ education.

Diaconal minister Kimiko Karpoff practising Healing Pathway
Diaconal minister Kimiko Karpoff practising Healing Pathway

“Some people have notions about what is proper for women in ministry to look like or what are proper activities,” said Karpoff. “We wanted to show the diversity of women in ministry. It’s potentially provocative, but is also done with humour.”

“It started with a conversation that some of us were having in one of our clergy facebook groups after one of my colleagues had had her photo taken for the clergy gallery in her church. The photographer told her to tilt her head differently because she looked ‘too Jennifer Aniston.’ We started sharing stories of being told we looked too young or shouldn’t do certain activities or should dress a certain way. From that came the idea of creating a calendar to counter some of the stereotypes and criticisms we experience as women in ministry.”

“The calendar is part protest and provocation,” says Trisha Elliott.  “We hope that when you look at the images, you ask yourself,

Diaconal minister Tracy Fairfield with her family
Diaconal minister Tracy Fairfield with her family

‘What DOES a minister look like? Who decides what is appropriate for a woman in ministry to wear, to determine who she should love and what she should and shouldn’t do with her free time?'”

Calendars are available on-line at http://www.calendarrevs.com/. The cost is $20, which includes the shipping.

The Malala Fund is an international organization whose aim is to create a world where girls are empowered to reach their potential through quality education.