Motherhood and Priesthood are two roles that carry with them particular expectations and demands; both are premised on the notion of altruism and sacrifice, constant availability, and putting the needs of others before one’s own (Carroll et al. 1983; Hayes 1996; Peyton and Gatrell 2013; Thorne 2000). This has also been gendered; sacrifice and altruism have traditionally been connected with women (Hays 1996). This article will examine what happens when clergy mothers simultaneously enact the roles of priesthood and motherhood, and how this is managed in the context of ‘intensive’ motherhood and priesthood. Based on in-depth semi-structured interviews with 17 clergy mothers in the Anglican Church, it will highlight the contradictions, negotiations and interweaving which occurs for both roles to be concurrently enacted, offering a contextual insight into the management of motherhood vis-à-vis professional life.
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- intensive motherhood
- intensive priesthood
- Church of England
- clergy mothers