Who Do You Say I Am?: African American Women Clergy and the Construction of Ministerial Identity
The purpose of this study was to examine how African American women in ordained ministry construct and develop ministerial identity in the context of the Black Church. This study employed a qualitative multicase study methodology and the purposive participant sample was comprised of 13 women who were ordained or pursuing ordination in the Baltimore or Washington conferences of the AME Church. Semistructured in-depth interviews were conducted with the participants, and member checks were employed as a triangulation method. This study reveals that the primary factor impacting ministerial identity development is the relationship with the senior pastor and explores the various ways in which that impact is felt. This study also connects aspects of that relationship and its resulting impact to African American cultural traditions and values, as well as offers several suggestions to women cultivating ministerial identity and the organizational systems within which that process occurs.
African American Women in Ministry
The Black Church
Women in Ministry