The 2018 North American Division (NAD) Women Clergy Conference is slated to be held September 2-5, in Palm Springs, California. This inspirational gathering is designed for all female Adventist professional pastors and chaplains serving in the NAD.
Out of 4,200 professional pastors in the NAD, over 200 are women. Because women clergy play a unique role in ministry, this gathering, serves as a time of refreshing, bonding, education, and affirmation for ministry. Brenda Billingy, Associate Director of NAD Ministerial says “I believe this conference will be the spiritual glue that binds us together, giving us the strength and wisdom to persevere, as well as the collective energy to creatively share/design effective ministry models.”
Although still a small minority of NAD clergy are female, the number continues to grow every year as congregations, conferences, unions and other ministries begin to discover the benefits that professional women clergy can provide. The General Conference of Seventh-day Adventist working policy provides for the role of women to serve as clergy and the NAD actively seeks to place qualified women in pastoral leadership.
In previous years, attendees at the Women Clergy Conferences have come back refreshed, renewed, and empowered. Jocelyn Shaw reflected “just sitting down and having fellowship does something for the soul.”
Julie Vega said “It feels like a fulfillment of my dreams to see more acceptance and more possibilities for these young women. I know there are still obstacles, but keep on trusting the God who called you because good things will unfold.”
Chaplain Shaw again reflects “what an opportunity to learn from those who have gone before me, and learn how the journey has been for them, and hear of ways that they coped or dealt with being a female in ministry and some things I can avoid because they’ve already been there and I can learn from them.”
Details on the program, registration and lodging will be released soon. Conferences and unions that seek to help women clergy to attend the 2018 Women Clergy Conference may wish to start putting funds aside now.