Church of God Women in Ministry Eagerly Await Wesleyan Holiness Event

 In All Church of God, CHOG

By Carl Stagner

Did you know that March is Women’s History Month? The third month of the year annually inspires church and society to intentionally reflect upon the contributions of influential women both past and present. This year in the Church of God movement, “PreacHer Sunday” will take aim at the goal of “having women fill as many pulpits in Church of God congregations as possible” on March 10. But just before PreacHer Sunday, women in ministry across the Movement and beyond will be refreshed and resourced at one of the most important biennial events designed for women in ministry—the conference of the Wesleyan Holiness Women Clergy. E2024, as it’s been dubbed, is shaping up to be one of the best yet.

“WHWC Conference is specifically designed to engage, empower, and equip women to lead in the church,” Tatum Osbourne explains. Tatum, who serves as executive pastor of Refuge Church of God in Brooklyn, New York—and as a member of the Ministries Council—also serves as the Church of God representative to the Wesleyan Holiness Women Clergy. The association was initiated in 1989 through the vision of Dr. Susie Stanley, a minister in the Church of God movement, and a professor of theology and church history at Western Evangelical Seminary (later at Messiah College). Also involved in the group are the Church of the Nazarene, the Free Methodist Church USA, The Salvation Army, and the Wesleyan Church.

Pastor Tatum continues, “Oh, how we need our preaching pastoring sisters in this present age. If you are a pastor, executive pastor, assistant pastor, or seminary student training for pastoral ministry, this conference is for you. As women pastors, we have some unique aspects in fulfilling our call that our brothers in ministry do not have to face. At the WHWC conference, we equip women pastors to strengthen the tools they learn in Bible college or seminary, and master the ones they do not teach in the classroom—balance, self-care, finding your voice, building a ministry support system, and so much more.”

Shannon New Spangler also represents the Church of God movement on the ministry’s board of directors. Her role as treasurer demonstrates her commitment to the ongoing mission of WHWC; her words demonstrate her glowing recommendation.

“To the woman minister in need of rest or encouragement or connection, to the women leader who finds something lacking in this season: I encourage you to consider making the time to join us for the Wesleyan Holiness Women Clergy Conference E2024 this year. You will find a godly and supportive group of women. You will find a welcome place to worship, a safe place to share your story with women who get it—women who are in the same place as you, and an opportunity to learn from strong amazing leaders. We don’t often have these spaces or these opportunities. I hope you will prayerfully consider joining me in Texas this March.”

This year’s theme is “Your Daughters Will Prophesy,” echoing the prophet Joel’s words reiterated in the Book of Acts. Such a theme overtly communicates the God-ordained foundation for the calling of clergywomen. Pastor Tatum expounds, “You are worth the investment…. The father has called, commissioned, and sent us to a world that needs to hear the good news of the gospel. What better way to equip ourselves than to get in a room with other called women and let ‘iron sharpen iron.’”

This year’s three-day experience will include a variety of engaging speakers, including Rev. Romanita Hairston, the CEO of M. J. Murdock Charitable Trust; Rev. Tatum Osbourne; Rev. Sandra Maria Van Opstal, co-founder and executive director of Chasing Justice (Chicago, Illinois); Captain Caroline Rowe of the Salvation Army (administrator/pastor) in Phoenix, Arizona; and Rev. Christine Youn Hung, assistant district superintendent for the Northern California Church of the Nazarene and founder of NOW Movement (Dublin, California). Melanie Slay, a worship leader and songwriter from Houston, Texas, will lead worship for the duration of the event.

Hurry! The event, which takes place March 7–9, 2024, closes regular registration on February 22. Learn more, and register today, at www.womenclergyconference.com.

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