NURTURE, EMPOWER, OUTREACH
What is the Women’s Ministries Department and what does it do for the women of the church?
Many times we are asked this question, “What is Women’s Ministries and what does it do for the women of the church?”
If I were to answer the question in three words, I would say, say, “Nurture, Empower, Outreach.” These three words express what Women’s Ministries is about and what we do.
Our aim is to nurture our sisters in the areas of spiritual and personal development. Having a daily relationship with Jesus is vital to our growth as daughters of God. To this end, we have created a number of Bible study lessons and seminars that emphasize the importance of prayer, Bible study, and personal devotions. The women’s devotional books are an important component of this as well.
We seek to empower women through training programs, such as WM Leadership Certification training seminars and WM mental health training—Thinking Well, Living Well seminars. Ellen White tells us that each woman “should develop and cultivate her powers, for God can employ them in the great work of saving souls from eternal ruin” (Testimonies to the Church, vol. 4, p. 642 ). We also help women through abuse prevention, economic and literacy empowerment, and health education ministries.
Finally, we train, encourage, and motivate women to be involved in outreach through friendship evangelism, plant a seed ministry, public evangelism, small group ministry, and much more. We believe that our name, Women’s Ministries, indicates clearly what we are about: women involved in service to others. Each woman using the gifts that God has given her to draw others to Jesus by first experiencing the love of Jesus through us.
One of the ministry concepts that God gave us is Homes of Hope and Healing, a small group ministry focusing primarily on outreach. In these groups, we invite our neighbors to join with us for a time of healing and hope. We begin with what we call “bridge” lessons that focus on areas of health and personal development, such as self-esteem. Then gradually we move on to non-doctrinal Bible lessons and finally into Bible doctrines. This is a process and takes time, but friendships are built during this process that will last a lifetime.
God calls each woman to serve Him and others. Can we ignore the call? We pray that your answer is “No! I cannot ignore the call!”
Heather-Dawn Small, director of General Conference Women’s Ministries