New Ministry Women & Work Seeks to Broaden Kingdom Productivity

Women & Work, a ministry launched this year with a panel at the Southern Baptist Convention’s annual meeting, seeks to fill a void in Baptist life for women who want to contribute to the Kingdom by working in ministry, working from home or working in the secular world.

Courtney L. Moore, the ministry’s founder, is a stay-at-home mother of three and pastor’s wife in Brandon, Miss., and she explained that her personal journey is part of what led her to start Women & Work. She felt called to ministry in high school but didn’t know many women in full-time ministry.

“I didn’t even know what that would look like,” Moore told Baptist Press, “so my vision for what I would be as a woman in ministry was to marry some guy in ministry and serve with him. … I felt like if you’re going to be a biblical woman, what you have to do is get married, have kids and be a stay-at-home mom.”

That’s what Moore ended up doing, but not before she earned a religious studies degree from the University of Mobile and a biblical counseling degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and served two years with the International Mission Board.

“Even with that education, I just never saw myself working,” said Moore, whose husband Brent is an adult group’s pastor for Pinelake Church.

About four years ago, Moore said, she “just kind of realized I’m made for more. As much as I loved the home and loved my children, I just knew this is not all for me.” She began looking for ways to use her skills and started writing part-time for her church.

Last year was Moore’s first time to attend an SBC annual meeting, and she went to various auxiliary events for women and realized there was “a group of women that are not being addressed and that really are not given a voice.”

She was inspired by Baptist21, a pastor-led network that provides a platform for younger pastors in the SBC, and she organized a panel discussion at this year’s annual meeting for the group she found underrepresented — women who work.

Panelists for “Women & Work: Stepping into Kingdom Productivity” were Amy Whitfield of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Kelly King and Mary Wiley of LifeWay Christian Resources and Lauren McAfee of Hobby Lobby Stores. Moore estimated close to 125 women attended the Tuesday night event.

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Source: Baptist Press