News & Events
By Esther Knott
The North American Division is sponsoring its first ever of its kind Women Clergy Conference April 23-26, 2012 in Berrien Springs, Michigan. Women clergy from all over North America have been invited to attend this “invitation only” event with the NAD leadership team. The Conference theme is Connect. Discover. Empower.
There are approximately 107 women serving as pastors in the North American Division. They scattered across 34 conferences. Plus there are women who serve as chaplains in hospitals, jails, the military, and on university campuses. This group represents less than 3% of the more than 4,000 pastors who serve in the NAD.
Each department in the NAD has been challenged to come up with a strategic plan. The Ministerial Department, directed by Ivan Williams, has the commitment to develop a strategic plan that empowers the women clergy who serve in North America. To accomplish this task it was determined that we needed to bring together the women we are seeking to serve and get feedback from them. Hence this unique and historical conference. There has been unanimous support from the Union Presidents for this conference. Each Union, in coordination with the local conferences, is working to make sure that every female pastor in their Union/Conference has the financial support necessary to get to the conference. This event includes dedicated time to hearing the stories of these women’s call to ministry, their areas of greatest need, and their stories of God at work.
Speakers include the following:
Ivan Williams, Director, NAD Ministerial (Purpose of our gathering)
Tara VinCross, Senior Pastor, Chestnut Hill Adventist Church Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Worship speaker)
Hyveth Williams, Professor of Homiletics SDA Theological Seminary, Andrews University (Worship speaker) (Panel member—What the Bible Really Says about Women Spiritual Leaders)
Stan Hickerson, Senior Pastor Stevensville, Michigan; Vice-president and Historical Consultant for Adventist Heritage Ministry (Historic Role of Women in Ministry in the Adventist Church)
Dan Jackson, President, North American Division, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists (Current Policy; State of the “Union”)
Evelyn Kissinger, Director, Lifestyle Matters at Work (Your Lifestyle Matter: Simple Solutions to DeStressing Your Life)
Christine Wallace, Certified Fitness Trainer (Women on the Move)
Ron du Preez, Resident Theologian, and Director of Adult Sabbath School, and Communication for Michigan Conference (Panel member—What the Bible Really Says about Women Spiritual Leaders)
Dwight Nelson, Senior Pastor, Pioneer Memorial Church on the campus of Andrews University (Panel member—What the Bible Really Says about Women Spiritual Leaders)
David and Beverly Sedlacek, Professor and Coordinator of the M.Div./MSW collaborative at Andrews University/Director of Into HIS Rest Ministries (Your Family Matters)
Esther Knott, Associate Pastor Pioneer Memorial Church; Associate Director, NAD Ministerial (Worship speaker; Women Clergy Conference coordinator)
Paul Richardson, NAD Reconnect Ministries (Report on survey of Women Clergy)
Paul Brantley, NAD Vice President for Strategic Planning and Assessment (Shaping the strategic plan for NAD in response to what we have heard)
Through the presentations and shared experiences it is our goal to:
Connect the women with each other and the leadership at NAD.
Discover how we can serve them.
Empower them to do what God has called them to do.
For more information you may contact Esther Knott:firstname.lastname@example.org