The leader of Women’s Ministries in a major church region in Africa called Adventist women to work to impact the community, by helping one person at a time. “Touch a heart to reach the world,” urged Omobonike Adeola Sessou, director of Women’s Ministries in the West-Central Africa Division church region, based in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
As guest speaker at the more than 2,000 women attending 2017 biannual Seventh-day Adventist Women’s Congress at Valley View University (VVU) in Accra, Ghana, last month, Sessou said, all congress participants must be equipped to reach the world. “It is about time Christian women rise to join their male counterparts to the clarion call of sending the good news to all corners of the earth,” she said.
Drawing from her message on the “Touch a Heart, Reach My World” congress theme, Sessou said it was also important for Christian women to touch hearts through love, prayers, and services as part of their efforts to win souls for Christ. She also expressed the hope that the congress would sharpen their spiritual tools and recharge their spiritual batteries, so they move forward to get involved in evangelism. “I encourage each one of you to spend time with the Lord,” she said. “Let us show love and kindness to one another and let us carry one another’s burdens.”
Sessou said she hoped for the event to be life-changing. “I hope that by the end of the event, you feel equipped and ready to touch a heart to reach the world,” she said.
Messages from Leaders
Northern Ghana Union Mission church region president Kwame Boakye-Kwanin called on women to position themselves to be first touched by the Lord. “I urge you to spend time in silence and find out what the real focus in life is, “he said, “because the Spirit of Truth will take you by the hand and guide you into all the truth.”
Southern Ghana Union Conference (SGUC) president Thomas T. Ocran echoed Boakye’s words. He reminded women that this quinquennium, the Adventist world church has placed a great emphasis on evangelism and Total Member Involvement (TMI), and initiative that tries to get every church member involved in sharing Jesus. But first, he said, “it is important for Christian women to experience spiritual renewal and the strength of the Spirit.”
Local women’s ministries leaders Vida Linda Gyasi, of the NOGH, admitted that the time we are living calls for women to step up. “In a time of atrocities, corruption, and injustices in society, the world is grinding to a halt and women should not hesitate in salvaging many for Christ,” she said.
Christiana Agyenim-Boateng, women’s ministries leader in the SGUC, seconded. “It is important for Christian women to pray, learn, and plan in their resolve to do evangelism,” she said.
Participants enjoyed practical workshops catering to women’s needs, especially for those who are unemployed. According to a video report of Adventist News Network, some workshops taught women how to make beads, detergents, decorations, cap weaving, and natural fruit juices. “If our young women learn a skill, they will be self-dependent and able to earn something for a living,” said Agyenim-Boateng. “Workshops were planned to benefit women.”
According to the same report, the highlight of the congress was the graduation of about 400 women who completed the leadership certification course from US-based Andrews University. Abigail Yeboah Asuama, one of the graduates, expressed her joy for having graduated from the course. “The program was time-consuming and stressful because as mothers, there are times your families need you home,” she said, “but we thank God for a successful graduation.”
Also, as part of the outreach program of the event, they also distributed 5,000 copies of “Story of Hope” missionary books.
“We came [to the congress] to meet Christ,” said Sessou, who believes that the event allowed Adventist women to be fully equipped for ministry. “I believe that…when they go back home, they will be lights that will shine in their little corners,” she said.
With additional reporting by Vera Bont, and Adventist News Network.