Did you know there is a translation of the New Testament produced by a woman? For a long time I didn’t know there was.
But we have The Montgomery New Testament, originally called The New Testament in Modern English, originally published in 1924. It is still in print.
Helen Montgomery’s life is as fascinating as her translation. When she was chosen to be President of The American (now, Northern) Baptist Convention in 1921, she was the first woman to head a major denomination. Prior to that (1914), she was elected the first president of the Women’s American Baptist Foreign Mission Board.
She was known nationally and internationally for her work in advocating women’s rights, partnering with such leaders as Susan B. Anthony. Additional interesting information about her is easily available online.
Because she produced her translation almost one hundred years ago, it does not have the inclusive-language feature. This was not an issue for women then in the way it is today. Her only aim–perhaps drawn from her missionary interests–was to produce a version of the New Testament that would speak an accurate and persuasive word to those whose native (or acquired) language was English.
But I often like to see how Helen viewed a particular passage, sometimes finding that her choice of words opens the way to a fresh way of encountering scripture.