East-Central Africa Division Celebrates Twenty-five Years of the Department of Women's Ministries

Debbie Maloba gives personal testimony of what Women's Ministries means to her and the women she leads.

East-Central Africa Division (ECD)

Within these precious twenty-five years, women have been equipped, valued, and given opportunity to make great impact in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. For a long time, in most part of the East-Central Africa Division (ECD), the culture did not easily accept or allow a woman to be involved in church ministry other than helping with cleanliness of the churches and doing community service (Dorcas Society).

Gender matters hindered women from actively participating in God’s work, however, we praise our mighty God for the huge improvement that we have experienced over the past twenty-five years. Women are able to organize evangelistic meetings where we freely share our faith and participate to the development of the church by using our God-given gifts. In unity, women in the church have assisted other women in the communities through training them and shaping their life skills. Women are the majority in most parts of our division, and we have noticed that when they are active, the church is active as a whole. A woman does not feel limited, but empowered to do more, to nurture believers while passionately working to revive, reform, and reclaim souls for our Savior.

We thank church elders, pastors, husbands, and church members for the acceptance and support that they have extended to the Women Ministries department as it has been a factor to the great work done. That support has greatly contributed to the spiritual growth of the women themselves. We are proud to be women of God, actively ministering in the church. Onward we move with God in our midst.

Women in throughout East-Central Africa Division celebrated twenty-five years of women’s faithful service in women's ministry through various activities and programs. It all started with the blessings and support of Ps. Dr. Blasious Ruguri, the ECD President, who addressed all women and young ladies in a pre-recorded, but powerful message.

Printed and soft (electronic) materials were sent to pastors and women leaders in local churches to use in celebrating the twenty-fifth anniversary Sabbath of Women's Ministries.

Women in ECD held presentations in national and local languages. They used national and Church television and radio networks, social media, and community events to tell the story of ministry by women and for women. They held community dialogues with people, including pastors, men, students, lecturers, and youth in several Seventh-day Adventist churches and institutions. These discussions focused on the impact of women's ministry, and women gave testimonies. Because of COVID-19, participants were limited but certainly representative of the service of women in ministry.

Women planted trees to commemorate the fruitfulness of these twenty-five years of Women's Ministries work in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Pictured below are the women at Jinja Adventist church in Uganda.

Although some places in Africa were still in lockdown, certificates and gifts of recognition were presented to former women's ministry leaders and pioneers where it was possible. Adding to the festivities were anniversary cakes shared with all church members and guests, especially government representatives, on that very special Sabbath.

In June women of West Congo Union Mission participated in the virtual evangelistic series presented by the East-Central Africa Division Executive Secretary Alain G. Coralie. The twenty-fifth anniversary celebration of Women's Ministries in West Congo will take place in December.

It was wonderful to see the participation of women across East-Central Africa using various means to continue the work of the Lord in their communities.

Contributed by Debbie Maloba, director of Women's Ministries in East-Central Africa Division

Published in Mosaic newsletter, 2020 Q4, fall issue