Women In Ministry celebrate Women’s History Month

Published 5:55 pm Thursday, March 23, 2023

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Local officials and ministers joined Deborah’s Women in Ministry members to celebrate Interdenominational Women’s Day and Women’s History Month and honor the organization for its work in the community.

DWIM supports women in ministry, acting as a sisterhood of clergy that provides mentoring, evangelists for revivals, spiritual and moral support to new pastors, and presenters for conferences, retreats, and seminars. Members also support charitable organizations, provide scholarships and perform other community service.

The organization held a meet and greet event Thursday, March 9 at the Hilton Garden Inn Riverfront to celebrate women. 

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Along with a welcome reception held by DWIM President Dr. Madelene F. Beard, it included a devotional period, greetings from clergy representatives and a fellowship hour to “mix and mingle.”

Clergy representatives included Suffolk Clergy United President the Rev. Gary Newsome, Suffolk Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance President the Rev. Dr. Anita Lewis, the Rev. Henry Diggs of New Morning Star Missionary Baptist, Virginia University of Lynchburg Alumni (Suffolk Site) President the Rev. Dr. Wong-ya Jones, and Rev. Ernest L. Hamlin, minister for visitation of the Eastern Virginia Association of the United Church of Christ (Southern Conference). 

City officials joining the celebration included Mayor Michael D. Duman, Vice Mayor Lue R. Ward Jr., and councilmen Leroy Bennett and Timothy Johnson.

In comments at the event, Ward said she has known Dr. Beard and her husband for several years.

“Dr. Beard, along with Galatians United Church of Christ and Deborah’s Women In Ministry, have been very supportive of me and my newspaper (Suffolk Happenings) and my magazine (Having Church).  I will continue to support them as they serve the community,” Ward said.

Johnson also spoke highly of Dr. Beard, stating that she was “a blessing” to Suffolk.

“We are very fortunate to have you in the City of Suffolk — all of you,” Johnson said. “Please know that we are here to support you. God bless you.”

Duman thanked DWIM for its work and its strength in the city.

“It is a pleasure to be in a room of such powerful women and I appreciate everything this organization has done for the City of Suffolk,” said Duman.

Bennett added his appreciation for DWIM and for holding the meet and greet.

“I was asked to just stop by DWIM’s meet and greet and say, ‘Hello.’ But when I found out what was actually taking place, I stayed,” Bennett said.  “I’d like to say how much I do appreciate all of you. Again, so honored that this event is taking place in Women’s History Month.”

For more information on Deborah’s Women in Ministry, go to dwimofhamptonroads.org or facebook.com/deborahswomeninministry