No, not Mellie, even though I am writing this after Scandal.
At a housewarming party last week for a couple at my church, one of the guests, also a member of my church, said he had told the First Lady he was going to buy her big “Church Lady hat.” She told him she wouldn’t wear it.
I like this about the first lady of my church. I also like that she has a career outside of the church, that I don’t see her sitting dotingly at every service (we have four, six if you count the two services on Wednesdays), that she’s not much of a shouter or a runner around the church when she is there, that she wears things I would wear (if I were taller), that she evangelizes in her own quiet way, without being an evangelist or minister.
I thought about this the other day as I read this excellent post on how to be a Jesus Feminist. In the comments, I addressed how Jesus, Christianity and the church have and influenced my feminism, and the First Lady of my church–and her marriage, which appears to be more egalitarian than traditional–has been a major influence, despite her reserved manner.Â She’s unlike any other pastor’s wife I’ve ever seen, and to me, that’s a good thing. Nothing against any of the other or previous first ladies in the church I grew up in or the churches I frequented in college. I very much liked all of them that I can remember and thought highly of them as women. But as women who wore big church lady hats, or as stay-at-home moms, or as co-pastors, ministers, or evangelists, they just weren’t women that I wanted to be, and with “pastor’s wife” being such a highly esteemed position in the church, there’s a tacit “follow her example” in every praise given to the woman in that role. Those silent messages can have a larger impact on girls and women in the church than we know. That’s whyÂ I think it’s nice to have a church first lady I can relate to, or who I think could relate to me.
What are/were your favorite First Ladies like?