Faith, Family &
77th Annual WNAC Convention |
July 17, 2012 | Memphis, TN
God's Mighty Hand in Memphis
By Sarah Fletcher
Over 750 attendees from 22 states and regions explored the mighty hand of God during the one-day WNAC Convention, July 17.
Leaders custom-designed the day to address current needs and topics of interest identified through an extensive survey conducted during the past year. The full-day schedule included times of worship, instruction, and interaction. Morning seminar choices offered women guidance for depression, parenting, and time/financial management. Sessions were recorded for those who could not attend.
Business at Hand
The day began with an early morning business session, a schedule change that met with overall positive response. And women came informed. Prior to the convention, WNAC mailed copies of proposed changes to its current constitution and By-Laws to state leaders. During registration, WNAC provided every attendee/delegate a packet containing these proposed changes and other pertinent information.
In her annual report to the convention body, Executive Director Elizabeth Hodges thanked women for their generous gifts to the Lord and His work, but expressed concern for office finances. While outside gifts totaled more than a half-million dollars, supportive giving for the office decreased by nine percent.
Testimonies of His Hand
Guest speaker Terri Roberts (pictured, below) of Strasburg, Pennsylvania, shared a wealth of Scripture as she related her story of God’s hand in adversity. “Everyone goes through storms in life,” she stated, “but not all storms bear the same intensity.” Rainstorms upset our plans, hurricanes catch us by surprise and cause damage, and tsunamis are storms that forever change our lives.
Her tsunamis include breast cancer and the loss of a son whose life ended tragically in the taking of innocent children’s lives. “Praising Him through your sorrow,” affirmed Mrs. Roberts, “is the key to getting through adversity.” Three vital helps include reading/memorizing key verses or anchor Scriptures, using a good devotional resource, and journaling.
During the noon Fellowship Luncheon, Ruth Bivens, longtime missionary to Mexico, shared snapshots of God’s hand of protection upon her life. God steered her from bad relationship choices, brought her through illness, spared the life of her son in a diving accident, and miraculously rescued her and husband Bud from a car tumble over a mountainside cliff.
Weaving threads of humor throughout her presentation, she also emphasized the importance of praising God and challenged listeners to call 911 (recite Psalm 9:11) in times of trouble.
Tennessee Women Active for Christ highlighted God’s handiwork as they hosted the luncheon event. Tables displayed pearls and irises—Tennessee’s state gem and flower. Dinner music from Michael Kear (violist), accompanied by Susan Forlines, reminded listeners of the difference made by the touch of the Master’s hand.
Healthy attendance at two afternoon sessions, “You Spoke…We Listened” and “Creative Idea Exchange,” echoed the growing sentiment that women want a voice and reinforced the organization’s commitment to serve more effectively.
Leaders challenged women to pray throughout the year for a great movement of God’s mighty hand, to observe the hand of God at work among His people, and to encourage one another by sharing handprints—evidences of God’s Mighty Hand within their lives.
Topped a half-million dollars ($523,565) in total giving for the year.
Shared plans to offer subscribers a choice of either digital or print copies of Treasure.
Approved proposed constitutional changes, with the exception of By-Law Article 2 and Article 7 (deferred to the Executive Committee for further study).
Awarded Cleo Pursell Foreign Student Scholarship monies ($1,389.29 total) to students at the Chame Bible Institute in Panama: Elisa Niz, Cynthia Urriola, Stephanie Concepcion, Baderlin Castaneda, Liz Gonzalez.
Registered 828 convention attendees.
Announced first recipients of Mary Ruth Wisehart Scholarships: Dominique Ward (Southeastern College); Bre Reierson (Hillsdale College); Jessica Barrow (Gateway College).
Applauded Tennessee Women Active for Christ for their hospitality and hard work in hosting the 77th WNAC Convention.