Focus on the News
“If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.” --1 Peter 4:11, NKJV
South Pacific Division (SPD)
Papua New Guinea Hosts Two Record-Breaking Congresses
[Papua New Guinea] In October, 20,000 women attended the largest WM Congress held in PNG. This is also the highest attendance record for a WM Congress in the South Pacific Division. The week-long congress was held in Yani, an isolated area of PNG with very little water and even less electricity, but was well-attended by the Eastern Highlands Simbu Mission administration, including the president translating for SPD WM Director Erna Johnson, and six pastors officiating the reaping baptisms of 35 people, the result of WM work.
About 80% of the women in attendance were illiterate, although WM in the mission supports the largest number of literacy classes in SPD. Also present were 70 wives of pastors, a large number of whom are illiterate.
At the Pacific Adventist University campus (PAU), another record was made when 210 teenage girls attended the first “Real Beauty” conference held in PNG. Twenty adult women mentors assisted conference presenter Erna Johnson.
While visiting the university, Mrs. Johnson reported on the conference in a PAU radio interview, and also described SPD Women’s Ministries mission and strategic plan, and affirmed her priority of reaching young women and teenage girls. A class of theology students invited her to explain the differences between Dorcas Society and Women’s Ministries. On the strength of the reports he heard about the “Real Beauty” conference, PAU Vice Chancellor Ben Thomas personally invited Mrs. Johnson to return next year to hold a weekend retreat for PAU’s young women. Dr. Thomas supports Women’s Ministries priorities and understands the problems his female students face.
Contributor, Erna Johnson, SPD WM director
West-Central Africa Division (WAD)
Women Trained for Leadership
[Cote D’Ivoire] Leadership in local church Women’s Ministries (WM) usually changes annually. In 2013 Cote D’Ivoire Conference opened leadership training to all women for the leadership certification program. “Our aim,” reports Adolphine Zian, the WM director, “is to equip all women and not limit this program only to the conference coordinators and directors, because all women are leaders in their own corners.” With this new approach many women will be prepared and trained to take up leadership roles when called.
More than 100 women attended Leadership Level 1 training in three districts during the spring of 2013. They anticipate completing the program in 2014 and receiving the Griggs University certificates.
Contributor, Omobonike Sessou, WAD WM director
Northern Asia-Pacific Division (NSD)
Woman Leads English Language Bible Studies
[China] Many Chinese graduate students at Wuxi’s universities wish to learn English. Doctoral students from other countries enjoy fellowshipping with an English-speaking group. Students have been interacting in English at the Zhongshan Church since 2009. Tina, a church member, recently completed the NSD Communication and Leadership Advancement Program and is now leading an English language Bible study. If attendance is an indicator, young lives are already being won for Christ.
Contributor, Sally Lam-Phoon, NSD WM director