North American Division
Indiana Conference: The Shepherdesses in Indiana regularly have area luncheons. The ladies enjoy the fellowship and good food at these get-togethers. Below is a pictorial report from several of these functions.
Northern Asia-Pacific Division
In Mongolia in November 2007,28 pastoral couples renewed their vows or experienced a real “church” wedding for the first time in their lives. This was held at the Ulaanbaatar 2 Hotel in Terelj. Away from everything, the couples had a great time bonding with each other, particularly those who were able to leave their children behind. Some had to bring their kids, but babysitting was provided.
One couple who had been married for over 20 years remarked that they needed to make changes in their marriage. The husband was suddenly made aware that his wife had needs which he was totally unaware of all this time! Below are pictures of some of the happy couples and the special dinner they enjoyed.
South American Division
In November 2007, pastors’ wives met in Gramado, RS, near Port Alegre, Brazil. Wiliane Marroni, SAD Shepherdess Coordinator, planned the event and Sharon Cress conducted seminars. Following is a pictorial report of the meeting.
South Pacific Division
North New Zealand Conference: In April 2007 all pastors and their wives were invited to attend a ministers’ meeting. A “Pastors’ Kids” camp was provided for PKs over 8 years at Tui Ridge and a crèche in Rotorua for those younger than 8 years, which the wives greatly appreciated.
The program focused mainly on the concept of a healthy Adventist church. Eddie Tupai is advocating this concept in all North New Zealand churches. This includes physical, mental, social, and spiritual health, with the health of the pastoral family being a primary focus. Ministers were encouraged to make time with their families a priority, much to the delight of the spouses. The guest speaker was Pastor Lyn Webber, who gave very practical talk that all appreciated.
As the pastors and wives arrived, they were given a health assessment. This included a questionnaire; a weight, height, and blood pressure check as well as blood tests. Bevin Hokin came from Sydney Sanitarium to do the tests. The results of these tests were given on Wednesday evening, and Bevin explained what they meant. Some were presented with some unacceptable results, and the challenge was given to them to commit to ongoing lifestyle changes that would help them improve their health.
One afternoon the pastors were given $50 to spend on or with their spouses. They had the afternoon to do something of their choice. How they spent the money was up to them. Then everyone joined together for a meal at a restaurant that was accessed with a gondola.
The pastors’ wives (including one brave male) had a separate meeting where they spent time getting to know each other personally. The spouses voted unanimously to have the same format for the ministers’ meetings next year. One pastor went so far as to suggest that he would be happy to pay part of the cost from his wages if the same thing was done next year.
India Literacy Project
In January 2008, Hepzibah Kore, SUD Shepherdess Coordinator, and Sharon Cress traveled through India to visit some of the Shepherdess literacy projects. Below is a pictorial report