Ministry Wives Committee
Being a ministry wife is amazing! But being a ministry wife can also be really tough. Our lives are full of tremendous joys, but also some serious challenges – we long for a confidential friend outside of the congregation who understands parish life and the stress that it can place on a marriage and family, and who can encourage us as we strive to balance ministry and family.
We are here to support you in your role as a ministry wife!
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Our goal is to establish a network for pastors’ wives. How are we doing this?
- Annual Retreats – these have provided wonderful opportunities for ministry wives to meet together to study God’s Word, relax, and laugh and cry together! One retreat is held in Alberta and one in British Columbia.
- One-Day Regional Retreats – not everyone can get away for a weekend, so we offer a one-day alternative in different regions of the District. We gather around God’s Word, and pray for each other.
- Conference Call Dialogues – a retreat may not be an option for many, and so we host conference calls to engage in a variety of topics, and to encourage each other.
- Project Elizabeth – is a system of intentional networking. It is named in honor of one of the most powerful woman-to-woman connections in Scripture! An ‘Elizabeth’ is a ministry wife who would see as her ministry the role of connecting with and caring for, supporting and encouraging a small group of ministry wives. We currently have 13 ‘Elizabeths’ who are establishing relationships in small groups throughout the District, via phone, email, Skype, Facebook, or face-to face where possible.
- Facebook Page – we have created a closed (private) Facebook page where ministry wives can connect with each other and share common joys and stresses with other women who ‘get it’.
- Prayer Request Emails – our prayer coordinator sends out prayer request emails regarding the concerns of ministry wives.
- Birthday/Anniversary Card Club – those who sign up will receive greetings on their birthday and anniversary.
- Encouragement Emails – we all need a word of encouragement every now and then, so the Committee periodically sends emails of encouragement to the ministry wives.
- Seminary Wives – we look for ways to engage and support the seminary wives. They are invited to all of our events, and at Convocation, the wives of the grads receive a gift from the Committee.
- Widows – our dear widows often feel abandoned by the church at large once their husband passes away. We stay connected with them by inviting them to our events, and they receive greeting cards in the mail several times a year.
- Communications – we use a variety of means to let ministry wives know what the Committee is working on: email, mailings, Canadian Lutheran articles, and the ABC District website.
The Committee also has three focus areas:
- Faith (a closer walk with Jesus)
- Marriage (support and encouragement for the ministry home)
- Ministry (how is God directing me to use my gifts for Him?)
We are a group of ministry wives, pastors, and advisors who understand the role of the clergy home, and especially the role of ministry wives.
The Committee consists of three ministry wives:
- Denise Hellwege (Edmonton, liaison to the seminary)
- Michelle Gamble (Grace Lutheran Church, Drumheller, AB)
- Carole Hoveland (Zion Lutheran Church, Golden Spike, AB)
and three advisors:
- Craig Tufts (Pastor of St. John’s, Vernon, BC)
- Jonathan Asmus (Pastoral Advisor to the Committee; pastor of Redeemer, West Kelowna, BC)
- Karin Gregory (Advisor; Counsellor Supervisor, Counselling and Care Ministries, Focus on the Family Canada)
At the 2009 ABC District Convention, a resolution was passed to develop “opportunities which will be appropriately beneficial to spouses of church workers”.
In November 2011, a Task Force was convened to work on this resolution. During the next six months, a survey of pastors’ wives was completed, asking what areas of support are most important to the wives. Also, at the District Convention in May 2012, several sessions were planned for pastors’ wives, including a brainstorming session on how the District could support the wives.
The Task Force discovered that pastors’ wives:
- long for a closer walk with Jesus,
- are looking for a close friend, and
- would like advice and encouragement on how to handle emotional issues and stress, and how to balance and integrate ministry and family in a healthy way.
The Ministry Wives Committee was formed in September 2012 to carry out the vision of the Task Force.
If you have any questions or comments you can contact us by phone at 1.888.474.0063 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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