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Hurlburt Hall (Room 136), McMaster Divinity College,
1280 Main St W
Hamilton , Ontario
Wed, February 07, 2024
Start: 01:00 PM
End: 01:50 PM

At this week’s Theological Research Seminar, Cynthia Tam will be presenting, “Sexism in the Canadian Churches.” Read the abstract and Cynthia’s bio below.

All are welcome to attend in Camelford Hall (Room 226) at McMaster Divinity College at 1:00pm or via livestream at the link below:

Join the Livestream
Password: z00m (Note that the password has zeros rather than “o”)


This paper is a critical interpretive synthesis (CIS) of journal articles and online publications that examine women ministers’ experiences across denominations in Canada. CIS is a literature review approach that provides more than a summary of the studies’ findings; it applies “an inductive approach aiming to create an overarching theory by integrating different theoretical categories, generated from the available evidence leading to a more profound understanding of the topic under study.” This paper aims to gain a deeper understanding of gender practices in Canadian churches and propose a way for the Church to live out the loving and restorative community that we are called to be. The major theme that arises from the review is the existence of a deeply rooted male-centered culture that leads to sexist approaches in Canadian churches that are sometimes implicit and unintentional. The long history of women’s ordination does not necessarily eliminate gender bias in church practices..



Cynthia Tam is an ordained minister and the national coordinator for disability ministries at Alliance Canada. She is also a pastor at The Living Room Church in Toronto. Having graduated from the University of Aberdeen with a Ph.D. in Theology, Cynthia is a research fellow at MDC. Her research interests are in the cross section of anthropology and ecclesiology, especially regarding the Church as a community with people marginalized by society.

About TRS

The MDC Theological Research Seminar (TRS) is a bimonthly gathering for all MDC students and faculty. TRS meets over the lunch hour on Wednesdays, and includes about thirty minutes for the paper presentation and twenty minutes for discussion.

All advanced degree students are invited to present a paper and share your research with your colleagues. TRS is an excellent opportunity to “test drive” a paper you will be presenting at an upcoming conference and receive helpful feedback on your current research projects. Thinking about submitting an article to a journal and want some interaction first? TRS will provide it. Just published an article or an essay and want to share it us? TRS is an excellent opportunity to broadcast it.

This year the organizing committee consists of Dr. Francis PangDr. Phil Zylla, and Dr. Gord Heath. To submit a paper, contact a member of the organizing committee.