About 200 Women Attend a One-Day Leadership Conference
In Inter-America, Adventist women vow to nurture and witness in their churches and communities.
Inter-American Division (IAD)
February 27, 2020 | Miami, Florida, United States | Libna Stevens, Inter-American Division News
Dozens of women’s ministries leaders overseeing thousands of local leaders throughout the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Inter-American Division (IAD) vowed to continue their role and commitment to enrich the lives of other women in churches and communities this year.
Nearly 200 directors from unions, conferences and missions, met for a one-day training conference in Miami, Florida, Feb. 20, to worship, pray, network and commit to personally reaching at least five women with the message of hope in 2020.
“This is a commitment you are making to bring people to the feet of Jesus,” said Dinorah Rivera, women’s ministries director for the church in Inter-America and main organizer of the event. The conference follows last year’s evangelism initiative momentum which resulted in more than 25,000 new persons discipled by the dedicated work of local church women’s ministries leaders, explained Rivera.
Under the theme “Chosen and Loved,” drawn from Jeremiah 31:3, the conference sought to motivate women who have been chosen and loved by God with a great purpose, said Rivera. “We have a tremendous opportunity once again to continue the momentum of this initiative that activated so many women to lead evangelistic campaigns and reach so many in the community,” she added.
“I saw how this initiative really took off throughout the IAD and women are excited to continue touching the lives of so many more.”
The initiative encourages women to be intentional about loving and nurturing those who are in the church, finding out their needs and extend that compassion and love to women in the community, explained Rivera.
“Seal your commitment with the Lord this year, let God cleanse, bless and use you in His service this year,” said Rivera.
Inter-American Division President Pastor Elie Henry, thanked the women’s ministries directors for being so involved in the mission of the church. “We understand what that involves for each one of you to continue in that calling,” said Pastor Henry. It’s about a daily transformation in Jesus to be ready for the Second Coming while witnessing to others with the message of the gospel, he said.
That witnessing has to come wrapped in compassion and genuine care for the well-being of others, said Rivera. “We must be intentional in understanding the needs of all the groups of people in the church and make sure our programs, our efforts are all about nurturing and empowering others,” she added. First, the focus must start inside the church, and then it expands into the community, said Rivera.
Rivera led a panel of three women: a young woman who was welcomed, nurtured and trained to serve in the church, another who recently mourned her husband’s death, and another who has a son with special needs. Each of the women shared their own experiences and challenged the women to extend their compassion even if they don’t understand each other’s circumstances.
“When we have not gone through certain experiences, we tend to minimize what others have gone through, but the Lord wants us to have the empathy and compassion and kindness that Jesus showed,” said Rivera. It’s important that we pay attention to each woman who comes into the church, looking for ways to supply all their needs, because we do not know what each is struggling with.”
Arnaldo Cruz, an Adventist pastor in Miami, challenged the delegation of women to continue finding ways to impact the community with their God-given potential and their inherit sixth sense.
“The church needs women who will be spiritually mature, who not only see the negative in the church but see the positive things happening within the church,” said Cruz. What is going to grow women’s ministries across the territory is not the budget but women filled with the Holy Spirit, he said. “This is the time to make a change, a mental change, a personal change, a spiritual change and a change with your relationship with God.”
Cruz called on the women’s ministries leaders to depend on God’s transforming power to keep them strong in leading in the church and community even when they feel exhausted, stressed and at times ready to give up.
Source: Inter-American Division News
Published in Mosaic Newsletter, 2020 Q1&2 Spring issue