The second half of the second century saw the development of a more hierarchical institutionalized church and of a theology of the Holy Spirit (Pneuma) reflecting this development. A driver of this development was a higher educational level among church leaders and Christians participating in theological discourse. In fact, ‘higher education’ (paideia) became a guiding value of Christian living, including for the study and interpretation of Scripture and for theology and church leadership. Yet the same period also saw a new wave of ‘inspired’, ‘pneumatic prophecy’, later known as ‘Montanism’, which was perceived as a threat in an increasingly institutionalized church and attacked and suppressed. This article sees a paradox here, and asks how Pneuma could be promoted as a source of Christian leadership under the banner of paideia, when the Spirit (Pneuma) at work in the ‘New Prophecy’ was perceived as such a threat. One area of investigation which may provide answers to this question is the controversial role women played both as educated participants in theological discourse and leading figures in the Montanist movement.