Junia was a coworker with the Apostle Paul, she is mentioned in Romans 16:7. For centuries though, this name was translated as “Junias”, or as a male, because the assumption was simply that women could not be leaders in the church. And since the church did not have female leaders, they made sure to modify the text so the earliest church also had no female leaders. Fortunately, the women of our past refuse to stay silent and the many powerful and strong women who had positions of leadership in the early church have been increasingly noticed – Phoebe, Priscilla, Mary, Junia and more.
This is one reason we named our daughter Junia. Its a cute name, which is all most people think when they learn our daughter’s name. But it hearkens back to a strong leader whom we know little about, but whose name has survived. This story is beautifully told in Scot McKnight’s little book Junia is Not alone.