American Baptist Churches of Pennsylvania and Delaware

Radical Redeemed Ready




The year 2020 will mark the 40th anniversary of the Women in Ministry Project, which was birthed out of the 1980 Women in Ministry conference at Green Lake Conference Center (GLCC) and which eventually became American Baptist Women in Ministry (ABWIM). To celebrate this remarkable anniversary and the courageous, cutting-edge commitment of American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA) to women in leadership, while also recognizing the challenges that still exist, a denomination-wide event is being planned for June 16-19, 2020.

We have much to celebrate in ABCUSA’s legacy of women leaders, such as (to name just a few):

  • Dr. Lulu Fleming - first African American woman to be commissioned for missionary service in 1866 May Jones and Edith Hill - two of the first women to be ordained (1882, 1894)
  • Helen Barrett Montgomery - in 1921 was the very first woman to be President of the Northern Baptist Convention, or for that matter of any Protestant denomination
  • Mayvis Shao-Ling Lee - first American Baptist seminary trained Asian Pacific woman to be ordained
  • Ruth Maldonado - first woman to serve in an executive position with ABC of Puerto Rico

From the pioneering women of long ago to the trailblazing leaders of today, the movement of women into ministry has involved the whole family of faith. Thus, we invite the full family of faith to come together in June 2020 to celebrate “Ministering Women.”

Rev. Soozi Whitten Ford and Rev. Dr. Tom Wiles are co-chairing the planning team, which includes representatives from across ABCUSA. Also on the Leadership Team are Rev. Gina Jacobs-Strain and myself as together we — and our respective organizations (AB Women’s Ministries and ABWIM) — partner in this innovative initiative. The theme that has emerged is “Celebrating Ministering Women: Radical. Redeemed. Ready.” Mark your calendar for June 16 - 19, 2020!

Celebrating Ministering Women - We are celebrating women leaders, past and present, their myriad journeys into ministry and their many ways of ministering. We are also celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the birth of the Women in Ministry Project.

Radical - ABCUSA has carried out a radical witness and radical witness is still needed.

Redeemed - When all God’s gifts in all God’s people are fully accessed, embraced and utilized, churches flourish and our world is transformed. We are all redeemed!

Ready - We are READY! Are you? All are Welcome: Women and men, young and old, lay and professional, ordained and non-ordained, people of every color, culture, and context… All are Welcome! That means YOU! Join us!