Post-Sexist–I Think Not

I stopped by the hospital yesterday to visit a parishioner after her surgery.  Nothing uncommon in the world of pastoring.  Nor was the response I received when I stopped by the nurses’ station.  The conversation went as follows:

Male Nurse:  Are you family?

Me:  No, I’m her pastor.

Male Nurse:  You can’t be her pastor.  

(Yes I catch the irony that a male nurse finds female pastors to be an aberration.)

Female Nurse:  Don’t say that.

Male Nurse:  I don’t mean to be rude–but they don’t make female pastors.  What is she a priestess?  (Looking at me)  I don’t want to offend you.

Me:  I’m not offended.  As a young female clergy person, I’ve heard a lot worse.  (I’m thinking at least this guy is honest.  I prefer this conversation to the looks, smiles, and funny head nods that I receive)

Male Nurse:  But what do they call you?

Female Nurse:  Pastor.

Male Nurse:  I mean like a title.

Me:  Reverend.

Female Nurse and Male Dr.:  Good answer.

Male Nurse:  (a little stupefied)  Seriously?…

Me:  Well, the congregation calls me pastor.  But I’ve been through seminary and the ordination process, so in official settings, I am in fact titled the Reverend.  

Male Nurse:  I think they should call you priestess.

Me:  I think I’ll stick with pastor for now.  

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5 thoughts on “Post-Sexist–I Think Not

  1. That is weird! You’d think a male nurse would be more sensitive to gender stereotyping. And he is really behind the times. Must’ve just left the farm waaaaay out in the county yesterday.
    On the other hand I’d go for Priestess. High Priestess. Her Royal Highness. She Who Must Be Obeyed.

  2. Actually the full title is The Very Reverend High Priestess of Propheting, Pastoring, and General Maleficence in the Name of Jesus M3.

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