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A Focus on Every Life at Women’s Leadership Conference

A Focus on Every Life at Women’s Leadership Conference

The South Carolina Baptist Convention recently hosted a Women’s Leadership Conference aimed at strengthening and encouraging women in ministry. 

Melanie Ratcliffe, Relational Evangelism Director at SCBaptist, explained that the conference was for women involved in ministry in any capacity, including women’s ministry leaders, pastors’ wives, and other church staff positions.  

“This conference is one of my favorite that we do here at the Convention because it’s an opportunity for women in ministry leadership to be poured into,” Ratcliffe said. “They pour out in so many ways, and this is an opportunity for us to encourage them, challenge them, and give them tools to share the Gospel.”

Michelle Myers and Somer Phoebus speak at the Women’s Leadership Conference.

Conference Highlights

The event featured sessions led by speakers including Michelle Myers and Somer Phoebus, authors of She Works His Way, focusing on enhancing leadership skills within church contexts. The conference also held a Young Leaders Lunch, where over 80 women aged 35 and under posed questions about ministry and leadership in a Q&A setting to Myers and Phoebus.

Another distinctive feature of the conference was the formation of cohort groups, where attendees were divided by region to foster networking and relationship-building. These smaller groups provided opportunities for discussions on professional development and personal growth in leadership. 

According to Ratcliffe, one focus of the weekend was emphasizing the importance of leaders being filled by the Holy Spirit so that they can pour out of that abundance to the people they lead.

Latasha Mobley signs with other women in her cohort.

Inclusivity and Accommodations

A notable aspect of this year’s conference was a cohort of eight deaf and hard-of-hearing women. The conference also provided two interpreters, Becky Walker and Sarah Wilson, during the event to ensure the women felt welcomed and included. Ratcliffe said that many of the women had never been part of anything like this conference, and “they were so encouraged to be invited and to be accommodated in that way.”

A former IMB missionary to the Deaf community and pastor’s wife invited Ashley Chisolm to the event. “She encouraged me to come and to check it out, and I was really inspired,” Chisolm signed. Chisolm expressed gratitude that the conference allowed her to invest in leaders within the Deaf community. 

ASL Interpreter Becky Walker signs during worship.

One Family Mindset

Through insightful sessions and meaningful discussions, the conference helped to equip attendees to lead confidently and make a lasting impact within their church communities and beyond.

“I’m so thankful that South Carolina Baptists believe that every life counts, including those in the Deaf community,” Ratcliffe said. “It was so good to see one family come together at the Women’s Leadership Conference.”

  • SCBaptist Creative Team

    SCBaptist Creative Team

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