No church is too small to have an appealing and effective ladies’ ministry, Linda Pausley encouraged attendees at her workshop “Launching an Intentional Ladies’ Ministry with the Smaller Church in Mind.” Her workshop took place on Tuesday, June 24, the second day of the GARBC Conference.

Linda has been a pastor’s wife for 37 years. She and her husband, Chuck, are pastor and wife at Bethany Baptist Church, Avon Park, Fla. Their church had hosted ladies’ events such as Bible studies and holiday lunches and teas in the past. But after attending a workshop during a previous GARBC conference, Linda felt called to be more intentional about ministry for ladies that involved outreach and service opportunities.

She prayed and sought the counsel of her husband, then she asked a few ladies to join her on a planning team. She also included a notice in the bulletin to see if any other ladies were interested. At the first meeting, Linda and her team decided that an effective intentional ladies’ ministry has four essential parts: (1) create a planning team or committee, (2) plan a yearly schedule that is publicized and promoted, (3) name the ladies’ ministry (be creative!), and (4) write out and post the ministry’s purpose statement or goals.

Linda adds that the purpose statement or goals should include “spiritual growth, bonding, outreach, and service.”

With the ladies’ ministry transformed, Linda and her team hosted a creative, innovative outreach event—an appreciation dinner. Each lady who wanted to purchase a ticket had to purchase two and then invite someone they would like to say thank you to. Many women brought their hairdressers and other women they had met throughout their daily routines. For the ladies who were invited, it was a blessing that someone noticed their service and wanted to treat them to dinner.

Emily Felderman came to Linda’s workshop looking for ideas to start a ladies’ ministry. Emily’s husband is the pastor of First Baptist Church, Russell, Iowa. She explains that they are “basically starting from scratch.” She has decided that she will start by asking a few ladies to join her on a planning team. Emily believes that these ladies will bring their own unique and creative ideas to the meeting. They will work better together, she says, than her trying to do it on her own.

As Linda emphasized throughout her workshop, “An effective ladies’ ministry can happen in your church, even if you are in a smaller ministry.”