By Dawn Zurmiller
JEFFERSON CITY—The minister of a church is certainly a needed and significant member of a congregation. The church family often depends on him to carry out many vital roles.
However, alongside that man of God there frequently stands a woman of God, who is there to encourage and nurture not only her husband and family, but also the people of the church. She understands the importance of her husband’s calling, yet at the same time she also comprehends the unique challenges it places upon their home life.
This is why the Ministry Wives Task Force (MWTF) was officially organized in the early 1990s, and now consists of members Freddie Brammer, Pam Brumley, Barbara Gard, Donna Laramore and Patty Panepinto, as well as advisors Jerry Field and Carla Martin.
Laramore explained the purpose of MWTF.
“We feel our main emphasis is to support and encourage ministers wives by promoting fellowship, inspiration and information, as well as prayer,” she said. “We want the minister’s wife to know that she is special.”
Since MWTF realizes that the minister’s wife is a helpmate to her husband, they also know that being lifted up by other women who have lived under similar circumstances can be very helpful and refreshing.
Besides meeting generally high expectations, Gard listed a few other challenges like “constant moving from one church to another, coping with settling children into new schools, leaving family to serve where God leads, living on a below-standard income, criticism on rearing family, and changing jobs yourself—always starting at the bottom of the pay scale.”
Nevertheless, these women say these things are worth the outcome.
“Yes, there are many challenges and sufferings that come with this position,” Brumley said. “However, if God has called you, then there should be no regrets. The many forms of suffering that one may experience will only help us grow in integrity, character, spiritually and in life. It is definitely worth it! I want to always keep growing to be better for my Lord.”
“God has taught me so much through sufferings and challenges that I may not have ever learned unless I experienced difficulties,” she said “I never found the suffering easy, but I did find that during those times, God was always there for me and carried me when I could not run, speak, or love on my own strength.”
MWTF is on record believing that there are several rewards that also come with being the wife of a minister, and it is their hope to help women find the balance between the difficulties and the blessings by focusing on the perfect will of God.
“Living in a glass bubble is hard for some,” Brumley said, “but if the minister’s wife lives a consistently godly transparent life at home, work, events, etc., being all that God created her to be becomes a blessing. There are many roles that people will try and place on her such as leadership positions, counseling, music, and Bible studies, but she must only do the ones God has gifted her for, and take care of her family. It’s important to keep her priorities straight because many are watching and learning from her example.”
MWTF will be holding a Ministry Wives Luncheon Oct. 26 at the Hammons Convention Center Ballroom in Springfield. The keynote speaker will be Sandee Hedger, wife of Rick Hedger, partnership missions specialist for the Missouri Baptist Convention. The worship leader for this event will be Brumley, who is the wife of Roger Brumley, pastor of Calvary Baptist Church, Neosho.
For more information, contact Laramore at (417) 260-4258. Registration is available through www.mobaptist.org under October calendar events.