by Sharon Robb
The missionary book, Both Feet In, by Marion G. “Bud” Fray with Kim P. Davis, inspired the theme for this year’s Iowa Woman’s Missionary Union annual meeting. Women were encouraged to surrender, sacrifice, and service for God’s Kingdom. The meeting was held October 2-3, 2015 at Cornerstone Baptist Church, Altoona, and just over 30 registrants representing 12 churches attended.
Attendees received a folder including the meeting schedule, Twenty things you might not know about the WMU Foundation, a flyer about Children’s Ministry Day, a flyer about the 2015 International Missions study on Indonesia, an August Mission Mosaic magazine, WMU Missions for Life information piece, and a copy of the 2014 National WMU Annual Report.
Following a meet and greet fellowship, Iowa WMU Coordinator Joni Wilkinson and Karen McGettrick, the current state WMU president, opened the evening’s activities by offering prayer for Southern Baptist missionaries with birthdays that day. Members enjoyed a short video presentation about Linda Cooper, the newly elected national WMU president, entitled “The Heart of a Leader.”
Joni and Karen offered encouragement to other WMU leaders attending from across the state with ministry activities, projects and resources for the various age groups within the church body. Karen reported on the Pure Water, Pure Love offering collected at Living Hope Community Church in August. Wilma Faulkner, Calvary Baptist, Glenwood, gave a report on the World Crafts ministry which provides work for artisans in many countries around the world. She and Joni set up a table of World Craft items and provided World Craft catalogs for those interested in purchasing any of the items.
Debbie McFerron and Darlene Lubinus, former IMB missionaries, presented exciting, inspirational talks regarding their missionary experiences and challenges facing young families in unfamiliar areas of the world. Their stories confirmed the need for our continued prayer and support for those in our mission fields around the world.
Karen conducted a short business meeting. She shared regarding her time at the National WMU annual meeting held in Columbus, Ohio, in June. Wilma Faulkner read the minutes of the previous meeting. The group did not elect officers, as the election had taken place earlier in April. It was decided that the next annual meeting will be held September 30-October 1, 2016 at Calvary Baptist Church in Marshalltown.
Karen announced that the next National WMU Annual meeting will be the Missions Celebration held June 12-13, 2016 in St. Louis, Missouri. Joni encouraged everyone to seriously consider attending that meeting since it will be so close to home. She suggested the possibility of making it a bus trip if there was enough interest. Reservations would have to be made soon.
There was discussion about former retreats held at Hidden Acres camp the past few years. Women were encouraged to attend the ONE conference for women which will be held April 1-3, 2016, in Urbandale. Additional information will be forthcoming.
The State WMU is in need of a volunteer to be Historian and maintain the scrapbook of activities.
A special offering was taken to support travel expenses for missionary kids coming back to the states for college to attend a re-entry retreat hosted by WMU. Door prizes were given out ending the meeting activities.
Refreshments and lunch were provided by local community members of the Friendship Baptist Center.