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ERIC Number: ED329456
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990
Pages: 26
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Minister's Right Arm: The Role of Women's Missionary Societies in the Presbyterian Church.
Gleeson, Kristin Brownsey
The largest mass women's movement of the 19th century was the women's mission movement. Initially, in the early 1800s, the concerns the mission societies addressed were mainly parochial, such as raising money to support young men in their theological studies. Gradually, women's mission societies began expanding their interests to a more public realm. These interests included providing funds and goods to be used by specific missionaries and missionary wives whom each group sponsored. The mission societies grew in size and sophistication of structure as the century progressed; and, correspondingly, the interests of the societies increased in scope and their influence on the church grew. Women's mission societies became very interested in the work of missionaries in foreign lands; they sought to provide financial, emotional, and spiritual support. Through this work, women's missions helped to broaden and educate the cultural perceptions of small towns in the United States. By the end of the nineteenth century, women's mission societies had formed elaborate structures including the regional boards that covered the United States. Although the women involved in the mission societies may not have pressed the case for equality as women of the 20th century did, their contributions and experiences were important in helping to shape the future of U.S. women as they functioned with increasing competence, confidence, and ability outside the home. (DB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Missionaries; Presbyterian Church