As you may know, the question of whether women can serve as deacons has been recently debated among many evangelicals. Since scripture makes clear that Phoebe served as a deacon in the church in Cenchrea, there is an abundance of historical and archeological evidence that women deacons were upheld by the apostles. Both Clement of Alexandria and John Chrysostom recognize Phoebe was a deacon.
Mauritania is a land of striking beauty, with sand dunes lined against the sky, Bedouins riding camels in the countryside, and flying beetles that look like they come straight from the abyss of the Apocalypse. Mauritania is also a land of extremes-extreme beauty, extreme hospitality, and lately, extreme religion.
Last year Naomi Tutu and I met on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to keep vigil on the 40th anniversary of the martyrdom of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Friends joined us from around the country. We asked the visitors gathered there: "What keeps us from living the Dream?" Most folks spoke of fear. Some spoke of ignorance.