Consider Women's Ministry

Comments (3)

Perhaps some of you have read the dialogue on the Small Groups Forum, about Women’s Ministry.  If not, I encourage you to go there, and read through the post by Freda Kennedy, as well as all of the follow up comments.  There are some great ideas percolating there.  The concept that is being discussed is the nature of Women’s Ministry that often includes Coffee Break, but can be so much more.

I am doing a workshop on this theme, this Saturday (Oct. 15) at our Day of Encouragement, in Hamilton, ON. I look forward to an open dialogue about Women’s Ministry, as we wrestle with the dynamics of our changing cultural context.  It’s important to keep the dialogue going as we seek to do relational ministry with women to bless the neighbourhoods and communities in which we’ve been planted.  I hope we’ll see where Coffee Break fits, with a new twist.  I am certain we’ll learn some things about ministry today.  If you’re in southern Ontario, perhaps you’ll join us.  www.diaconalministries.com

I welcome your thoughts about a broader perspective on Women’s Ministry.  What shape does it take in your church?  What are you doing in your Coffee Break or in addition to it, to share the love of Jesus with others in your church and community?

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To marian: 

I would like an update on how your saturday went and if anything new came out of the discussion.

I truly believe that women's ministry or Ministry to women is a much broader then we think..It would be great to have a canada wide forum discussion with all women's ministry leaders or anyone who has insight into our changing world and challenge for all women of all cultures..

It has been on my heart for a while that some how we need a "Ministy to women" in a much broader sense..

Marianne

Thanks Marianne,

It sounds like we share the same heart, recognizing that there is value in having ministry for women.  And yet, we need to embrace our changing culture in fresh ways.  In this new day, we see people less committed to programs or institutions, while hungering for relationship.  How do we do ministry in a new way, in these days?  We need to wrestle with this question, in our Women's ministry.

Regarding the workshop that I led at the Day of Encouragement, I think we just began to scratch the surface.  We talked about the need for all of us as leaders to be wholistic in our ministry - that God's Word needs to inform and shape us, as we engage community, while walking in the fellowship of believers.  We also talked about the need to be pouring into the next generation.

Perhaps the greatest thing that came out of the workshop was the recognition that we need to pour into the life of another.  For many women, there are opportunities to mentor other women, perhaps even somewhat informally.  We can identify someone who could be encouraged in their leadership, and simply offer to pray for them, and walk alongside them in their journey. Or we might intentionally walk alongside someone who is far from God - pray for them, initiate conversations that might go to spiritual things, etc.

Too often we have rested in the 'programs' of church, of which Coffee Break is one.  While I believe programs can be so helpful in discipleship, I also believe that if we're not doing this on a personal level, the programs begin to fall flat.  Jesus poured into the lives of his 12 disciples (his small group) and more intentionally into the life of 3.  So, who are your 12, and who are your 3? 

2 Tim. 2:2 demonstrates the need to continually pour into the life of others, through teaching.  It speaks for 4 generatioons of Christians.  Each one of us can read the passage, and see where we fit into the picture.  Am I passing on the faith, through my life rubbing onto the life of another?  Am I salt and light in my church, and my community? 

I have thought about having a forum as Marianne describes - gathering people together to wrestle through the question of women's ministry in today's changing culture. 

Please let me know - What are your thoughts about Women's Ministry in the current culture?

I hope to hear from you!

Blessings,

Marian

 

I think you have hit it right on the bullseye..

I quote Richard Rohr " Finally all we have to give away is our own journey. Our own story. Then we become living witnesses. The only authority we have to other people's lives is what we ourselves have walked and what we know to be true."

To find ourselves we must first lose ourselves and let go of all preconceived ideas and see with fresh eyes..I have said for many years that the mentorship is the way to go, Being a child of an immigrant our parents pattered but not mentored.. We need now to mentor the younger ones and come alongside the older ones who now need us to be their ears and eyes hands and feet and encouragement.

But unless we lift the veil and reveal ourselves and dare to finally dare to be ourselves nothing will happen..
My heart is full of joy as I read your letter..Thank you for responding.. May God give you courage and insight as you go forth.. Ponder the name of the Lord..I am who I am  nothing more nothing less..It is all encompassing..So as I learn to be me and have removed the veil and share my life it is joy ..

What are my thoughts on women's ministry?

I have been co-director and director of coffee break for over 7 years and have stepped down and followed the Lord's nudging to release the women who attend to follow where the Lord is leading them..The women had at first a hard time realizing I would not continue and that coffee break was not continuing but releasing the women has birthed a new wednesday morning. Two women started "Connect" it is a drop in centre for women of all ages and from the community to come and have coffee and have the children play.. We now have women from al least 5 different countries drop by one Muslim lady from Iran and one muslim lady from Lebanon. We have 2 visiting Chinese professors come as well, and a spanish lady from colombia as well as Korean. They are for the most not chrisian.
The hard part for some is that we have been trained to right away preach Christ instead of first sharing who we are and our life..It is in the listening and conversation that you discover a relationship building then the trust and you become the living letter, Christ has already writien on our lives and the community will read it,,

Listen and you will discover, communicate your life and you will hear the other's life story, relate and you have church..

I just did a  speaking engagement in Salmon Arm up north for a women's retreat and taught the whole book of Esther in that retreat we lifted the veil and revealed our pains and sorrows and communed together and I and my friend got to love and learn and listen to these women there who too are seeking and asking the same questions..They needed encouragement and guidance and God provided wonderfully..

So here too I left this small town with the same question. We need a women's ministry team..
One women came to me at church and said I can't talk to a man but only to a woman.. This too left me thinking..Where is the ministry to women. How do we do this..

I think the journey has begun for you and me to sit with this to think on this and to live it..

Yours In Christ Marianne

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