"When we think of megachurches, very often we imagine large evangelical congregations—numbering in the thousands, located in the United States. But, do you realize that five of the 10 largest megachurches are located in South Korea? According to last year’s research by the Economist, the Yoido Full Gospel Church claims 830,000 members, and continues to grow by 3,000 members each month! Astonishing, isn’t it? But, what if I told you that this church, pastored by Dr. Cho, is also egalitarian?!
According to Why Not Women, Dr. Cho was initially unsure whether gifted women teachers should have access to the pulpit because of cultural, rather than biblical, concerns. Yet, under the encouragement of Loren Cunningham — cofounder of Youth With a Mission — Dr. Cho began to open ministry opportunities for women, including positions as ministers and cell group leaders. Several years later, Cho visited another country and was shocked at the small size of their churches. What was his recommendation? Dr. Cho said (Why Not Women, p. 69):
I told them to release their women, but they insist that’s not the problem. They ask me “What’s the key to your church?” I tell them again, “release your women…”
Friends, if, as Scripture suggests, God gives spiritual gifts to all Christians (Romans 12:6-8, 1 Corinthians 12:7 ff, and Ephesians 4:11-13) regardless of gender, education, class, or ethnicity, then one would expect to find healthy, vibrant, growing churches where the spiritual gifts are given their fullest breadth of service. And, who can but admire a leader like Dr. Cho for courageously giving women opportunities for leadership despite cultural prejudice to women leaders. And, we can only wish that all pastors might learn from Dr. Cho’s example. Let us pray for churches around the world to release women’s gifts in order that we might “all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:11-13)."