First Seventh-day Adventist Women's Bible Launched at GC Annual Council
[Silver Spring, Maryland] General Conference Women’s Ministries (GCWM) launched the first Seventh-day Adventist Women’s Bible at Annual Council in October. Co-produced by Editorial Safeliz of Spain and GC Women’s Ministries, this NKJV Bible is available in English, French, and Spanish and four color choices.
The Women's Bible is designed to appeal to women with its varied covers, design and font type, and exceptional beauty of full color portraits of biblical women. The list of 28 Fundamental Beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and colorful Adventist prophecy charts are also included.
Special study materials—introductions to the sections and books of the Bible, biographies of women in the Bible, a series of Bible studies, lists of interesting facts and weddings in the Bible—are written by women scholars Jo Ann Davidson, Ph.D., Carla Gober, Ph.D., Elizabeth Talbot, Ph.D., and Hyveth B. Williams, D. Min.
GC Women’s Ministries Director Heather-Dawn Small wrote “Being a Christian Mother in a Changing World,” and GCWM Associate Director Raquel Arrais discussed Proverbs 31 in “Making a Difference in Today’s Society.” Women’s Ministries Directors of the world divisions and other women contributed to more than 50 brief articles about virtues exhibited by women in the Bible.
Bibles may be purchased in the U.S.A. for $39.99 at local Adventist Book Centers or online www.adventistbookcenter.com.
2015 GC Session Women's Meetings
Join us next year for Women's Meetings, July 6-9, 2015, at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center Grand Ballroom in San Antonio, Texas.
Women's meetings with devotional, Monday-Thursday, 9:30 AM. Women's meetings with seminar, Tuesday and Thursday, 2:00 PM.
For general information about GC Session, click here
2015 Women's Devotional
Altogether Lovely, the 2015 Women's Devotional, is available at local Adventist Book Centers. All royalties from book sales fund Scholarshipping Our Sisters (SOS). In the past twenty years the GCWM program has awarded one million scholarship dollars to 2,164 women in 124 countries.
Order online, www.adventistbookcenter.com
Inter-European Division Holds First WM Congress
"Women in Action"
[Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany] The first Inter-European Division (EUD) Women’s Ministries congress in early September brought more than 700 attendees from 20 European countries to Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany.
Guest speakers included the supportive mayor of the city, Heather-Dawn Small, GCWM director, Raquel Arrais, GCWM associate director, Carla Gober, Loma Linda University professor, and Dr. Cornelia Strunz of Desert Flower Center at the Walfriede Hospital in Berlin. Workshops included WM Leadership Training Certification with 22 women receiving their Griggs University Certificates for completing the first three of four levels.
enditnow, an Adventist Church initiative to counter violence and abuse against women and girls, played a central role in the conference theme, “Women in Action.” Women staged a flash mob nearby to introduce enditnow to the community and stood in formation to spell the letters of enditnow (pictured above). Women learned about the impact of abuse on mental health. A charity concert raised money for victims of female genital mutilation (FGM) in Kenya. Strunz introduced her work in Berlin for reconstructive surgery in victims of FGM.
Congress organizer Denise Hochstrasser, EUD WM director, provided attendees with an orange scarf in keeping with the United Nations gender-based violence campaign, "Orange Day." She encouraged women to wear orange every 25th day of the month to break the silence about abuse and to draw attention to GCWM initiative, "enditnow Adventists Say No to Violence Against Women and Children."
Trans-European Division Holds First WM Congress
"Come to the Spring"
[Rogaška Slatina, Slovenia] The first Trans-European Division (TED) Women’s Ministries congress in late September drew more than 200 women to Rogaška Slatina, Slovenia. Guest speakers included TED President Raafat Kamal, TED Executive Secretary Audrey Andersson, and Raquel Arrais, GCWM associate director. Australian speaker Debby Mayer, founder of the Language of Flowers ministry, used her own vulnerability with illustrations of flowers and plants to reveal God's love and show how He uses our brokenness to minister to others going through similar experiences. The conference theme “Come to the Spring” invited attendees to taste the living water and use it to bless others.
Using the Lord’s Supper language to illustrate her message, Arrais (pictured above), revealed how Christ took us (chose us as women), then blessed us (with gifts and talents), then broke us (through trials and tribulations), and then gave us (re-made us) to reach out and minister to others.
Congress organizer Clair Sanches-Schutte, TED WM director, provided many opportunities for attendees to learn in seminars, to pray and worship, and to engage in sensory activities through music and spirit-filled experiences.
Candles and inspirational music by the praise team brought in the Sabbath with a special touch. The next day Sanches surprised the women with a slice of "Sabbath cake" and a cup of tea to make the transition of saying goodbye to Sabbath a little less difficult.
"Women in the Frame," a dramatization by Elleni-jaye Anderson-Grey of England, drew women directly into the pages of the Bible with her intense depictions of Eve, Lydia, and the Woman at the well. The puppet ministry of the characters Eb and Flo was presented by Annette Moore and Dexter Sanches.
The outreach program in Maribor's town square was the highlight of the conference for many ladies. More than 100 women helped with a health expo in conjunction with the activities planned by Maribor's Messy Church team. Face painting, coloring books and coloring pencils for children and flowers and literature for adults gave participants experience in community outreach. An offering, roughly the equivalent to USD$3,000, will assist two local children who have been identified by town officials as having special needs.
Contributed by Sandra Golding, tedNEWS. See news article here.
North American Division Women Reach Out to Orlando at WM Congress
[Orlando, Florida] Nearly 1,800 women gathered in Orlando, FL in late September for a weekend of spiritual renewal and fellowship at the “Free Indeed” Women’s Ministries Convention. Guest speakers included Dan Jackson, Ella Simmons, Katia Reinert, Adrienne Townsend, and Doug Tilstra. Attendees chose from more than 30 seminars to attend on topics such as prayer, health, forgiveness, and coping with anxiety, to name a few.
Many church-sponsored events are purposeful in building community outreach into the schedule. In Orlando, more than 700 women participated in a community outreach called "God in Shoes" in shelters, churches, and community centers. “God in Shoes” ministry is an innovative method of evangelism that takes the church into the community to perform acts of kindness and demonstrate God's love. It helps give back to the local community, it blesses those who participate, and it provides awareness of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It also encourages participants to begin similar outreach activities in their home churches and communities.
Participants took opportunity to learn the joy of volunteering and to experience the organizational process of ministry. Women gave manicures, pedicures, facials and massages; cleaned, emptied, sorted, donated; cried and laughed, reassured and comforted, prayed and hugged.
Mary Jo Dubs, founder of "God in Shoes" ministry and Georgia-Cumberland Conference WM director, organized the Orlando activities. Her grassroots ministry has spread rapidly across the Division since its inception ten years ago.
In another form of outreach, women sent handmade hats for donation to the Florida Hospital Cancer Ward for women who lose their hair after chemotherapy treatments. Dubs delivered more than 500 hats with NAD President Dan Jackson and congress organizer Carla Baker. Each hat came with a card that read, “Made especially for you by the women of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.”
NAD WM director Carla Baker stated, “Several women expressed that the “God in Shoes” event was the most inspiring part of the congress for them. They learned that Jesus sets women free not only from our sin and guilt, He also sets us free to minister in His name and share His freedom with others.”
Contributed by Carla Baker, NAD WM director, and NAD NewsPoints. Stories and video clips here and scroll down to ReachNorth America.
News from GC Women's Ministries
GC Women's Ministries Honors Wives of Two General Conference Presidents
[Silver Spring, Maryland] Kari Paulsen and Nancy Wilson each received the GCWM 2014 Woman of the Year award presented in October by Heather-Dawn Small, GCWM director, and Raquel Arrais, GCWM associate director.
Nancy Wilson is wife of current GC President Ted N C Wilson. Kari Paulsen, wife of past GC President Jan Paulsen, indicated she is writing a book of her memoirs which includes the amazing story of her conversion.
Ironman Athlete Donates Fundraising to SOS Scholarships
[Chattanooga, Tennessee] Would you support Women's MInistries scholarship program by swimming 2.4 miles, biking 116 miles, and then running a full marathon of 26.2 miles−in one day? Seventh-day Adventist Ed Boyle did when he completed the Chattanooga Ironman triathlon competition, September 28, in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Boyle donated his fundraising efforts for the race to the General Conference Women’s Ministries scholarship fund, which provides scholarships for Adventist women worldwide. As an employee at the Review and Herald Publishing Association, Boyle worked with the production of the annual women's devotional book and is "impressed with the quality of the program, the great need among young women within our church to achieve higher education, and the caliber of leadership in GC Women's Ministries."
You may not complete a triathlon, but you can show your appreciation of his extraordinary endeavor when you donate to GC Women's Ministries scholarship fund in honor of our favorite Ironman.
Contributed by Carolyn Kujawa, GCWM SOS Fundraising volunteer
SOS Tea and Silent Auction Raises Funds for SOS Scholarships
[Takoma Park, Maryland] Flowers, scones, music, and friendly conversation highlighted the SOS PossibiliTEA at Sligo SDA Church in Takoma Park, MD. Guest speaker Lois Peters inspired the group with her personal experiences putting God’s promises of blessing to the test.
Guests enjoyed a duet by Christina Rosette and Javonna Matthews and a solo by Jamila Silvera. A silent auction, along with generous donations, added $2,000 to the scholarship fund.
Contributed by Carolyn Kujawa, GCWM SOS Fundraising volunteer
Heather-Dawn Small Travels to El Salvador
Inter-American Division (IAD)
[San Salvador, El Salvador] Two local congresswomen joined with 1,500 Seventh-day Adventist women at a one-day WM congress in San Salvador, El Salvador on Sunday, November 30, 2014. During her weekend visit to El Salvador, GCWM director, Heather-Dawn Small had the privilege to meet first with all the pastor’s wives of the El Salvador Union on Sabbath, November 29, and then with her many sisters on the following day.
These meetings were planned by Betty Pacheco, WM director for the union and wife of the union president. The theme for the WM Congress was “Women of Victory,” and the day consisted of seminar presentations by Mrs. Small and Mrs. Cecilia Iglesias, IAD WM director, as well as testimonies of victory in Jesus over some of life’s most challenging circumstances. The weekend was Spirit-filled and a time of rejoicing.
Contributed by Heather-Dawn Small, GC Women’s Ministries director
Botswana Women's Ministries Distributes Two Tons of Food
Southern Africa-Indian Ocean Division (SID)
[Botswana] Destitute and at-risk families and orphans received two tons of food when Women’s Ministries distributed this gift donated by Curves exercise gym, part of an international franchise.
Curves representatives commended Botswana Union Women’s Ministries for the work they are doing for the less fortunate and pledged to support future endeavors.
Hmong People in Laos
Southern Asia-Pacific Division (SSD)
[Laos] The Hmong people in Laos live in poverty, but Seventh-day Adventist Church members are enthusiastic with their praise for God. Women are active in leading Sabbath programs and church activities in four churches located in this area. The Kwang Si church has its own home school. Pastor Tong purchased 25 book bags, paper, pens, and other items for these students, but many more unchurched children also need education and school supplies.
Thailand Mission donated two industrial sewing machines for women and girls to make bags and handcrafts in a Women's Ministries microbusiness. They need more sewing machines to create sufficient income.
A number of adults, particularly women who cannot read and write, wish to study the Bible and eagerly desire literacy programs. Even literate women need Bibles.
The lack of Bibles, education, and income does not stop these women from testifying to God's love and care.
If you would like to contribute a monetary donation, please contact GCWM. Email [email protected] or telephone 1 (301) 680-6608.
Contributed by Sim Sew Moi, Southeast Asia Union Mission Women’s Ministries and Children’s Ministries director
Inter-American Division (IAD)
[Honduras] Members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Honduras are marching through the nation's major citiies to call attention to enditnow. Carrying banners, wearing colorful costumes, and sometimes riding colorful floats, women, men, and children conveyed their message and created true spiritual feasts. These occasions are utilized to perform various free activities such as: delivery of materials, medical consultations, legal advice, haircuts, massages and health talks, among other things.
Contributed by Del Delker Howell, Honduras Union Mission Women's Ministries director
Southern Asia-Pacific Division (SSD)
All unions in Southern Asia-Pacific Division, particularly in Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, and the Philippines, report events designed to bring public attention to enditnow. The message that Adventists Say No to Violence Against Women and Children is being announced in local communities through parades, symposiums, petition signing, and seminars. Government officials are pleased to assist and collaborate with the efforts of local Women's Ministries leaders and churches.
Contributed by Helen Gulfan, SSD WM director
How to Change Your Habits
KEYS TO LIFE
How do you change bad habits for good? Stephen Covey in his book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People reminds us that there are three things to consider when developing habits. You need to know what to do, you need to know how to do it, and you need to be motivated to do it. And there is one more vital element: You need the power to do it.
What’s the piece that’s missing for you? Do you know what you need to do to break free from your bad habit or addiction? Perhaps you know what you need to do but you don’t know how to do it. You try and try but nothing seems to be working. Or perhaps you know what to do and how to do it, but you just don’t have the passion or motivation to stick with it.
One of the keys that is a source for motivation and power in forming new habits is:
CREATE A CONNECTION
A. Embrace God
One of the hardest struggles of the human heart is to realize the need of a power outside of oneself. It is natural to be independent; to try to solve all of life’s perplexities without help. But God, who created us, knows we need His help, power, and guidance in order to successfully manage ourselves and our life situation. We need to let God have control in our lives.
B. Connect with God through Prayer
Prayer is a two-way conversation with God. There is no being in the universe more personally interested in you than God. Prayer opens your heart to hear His voice and receive His love, power, and guidance.
Modern science is beginning to recognize that “prayer is an integral component of the spiritual life of mankind. Clients in crisis may need prayer for encouragement, comfort, and support.” In addition, “prayer allows people to express themselves during crisis and emotional turmoil. It can serve as an important source of personal strength and as a foundation for self-resilience during times of adversity.”
C. Connect with God through Study of the Word
Have you ever been hopelessly lost on a trip, with no map and no one around who seemed to know your destination? You drive around and around and get nothing but frustration and an empty tank of gas. In a similar way, people try to fix their problems, find happiness, and forge a future without seeking God or reading His Word. It doesn’t take long to wind up empty and frustrated.
God’s Word, the Bible, provides instruction for living. It gives insight and understanding for the big picture in life as well as the details
In the same way that we can’t survive physically by having an occasional meal, we can’t survive spiritually by listening to an occasional sermon or having an occasional Bible study. Transformation, growth, and maturity in our thinking and lifestyle involve a process, not an event.
Excerpted from Vicky Griffin's seminar included in the packet, Thinking Well, Living Well. To order, call GCWM, 301-680-6636 or email, [email protected]
Threats to Women's Health
HIV/AIDS Facts and Figures
- Globally, 54 per cent of all adults living with HIV are women.
- Young women worldwide make up more than 60 per cent of young people living with HIV; in sub-Saharan Africa, their share jumps to 72 per cent.
- Women and girls comprise 58 per cent of sub-Saharan Africans living with HIV; they bear the greatest burden of care.
- In the Caribbean, 53 per cent of adults living with HIV are women.
- In Asia, women account for a growing proportion of HIV infections: from 21 per cent in 1990 to 35 per cent in 2009.
TREATMENT and PREVENTION
- To date, treatment for HIV and AIDS has only reached 54 per cent of people who need it.
- In 2011, 30 per cent of pregnant women living with HIV and eligible for treatment were receiving antiretroviral therapy for their own health, compared with 54 per cent of all eligible adults.
- In 26 of 31 countries with a generalized HIV epidemic, less than 50 per cent of young women have comprehensive and correct knowledge about HIV.
- An estimated 50 million women in Asia are at risk of acquiring HIV from their intimate partners. Evidence indicates that these women are either married or in long-term relationships with men who engage in high-risk sexual behaviours.
Two GCWM Seminars on HIV/AIDS, Truth or Consquence and The Loving Touch may be downloaded here.
Tips for Leaders
Ministering to a Woman
- Presence−relationships are important to women
- Understanding−compassion is a catalyst for healing
- Conversation−friendship opens the door for Bible study
- Example−personal experience makes an impact
Stay Positive in Difficult TImes
- Look for beauty
- Make a plan
- Be active−even when you don't feel like it
- Take one small step toward goal
- Don't compare your life to others
Date To Remember
December 1 is World AIDS Day.
Download two GCWM seminars about HIV/AIDS: Truth or Consequence and The Loving Touch.
- 15 International Day of Elimination of Violence Against Women
- 19 World Day for Prevention of Child Abuse
- 01 World AIDS Day
- 03 International Day of Persons with Disabilities
- Ten Days of Prayer, January 7-17, 2015
- GC Session Women's Meetings
- Mission to the Cities
- Women Refugees
- Women and children with HIV/AIDS
10 Days of Prayer
January 7-17, 2015, see more here
Missionary Book of 2015
Health & Wellness: Secrets That Will Change Your Life, Mark A Finley and Peter N Landless, editors, order online