Women were "airbrushed" out of the history of the Christian church, said University of Manchester (Britain) professor Kate Cooper, author of Band of Angels: The Forgotten World of Early Christian Women (Overlook, 2013). Cooper writes that in the first two centuries of Christianity, women regularly preached the gospel and some carried out baptisms. Lydia, Perpetua and Thecla of Iconium spread Christianity through friendships and family networks, she said. "Over time less and less attention was given to [women's] role[s]. Really, they have been airbrushed out of history," she added. "It is quite sad that a religion which began with a mother and her wonderful baby should still have so much difficulty with remembering to honor the contribution of its women."
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