Illinois women’s meeting to make leadership a ‘priority’

Meredith Flynn —  March 30, 2015

PriorityHEARTLAND | Living a life with intention is the theme of this year’s IBSA Women’s Resource Conference April 24-25 at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Decatur.

The two-day Priority Women’s Resource Conference is designed to equip leaders serving in the local church. The conference will include worship and large group sessions led by nationally known speakers, 40 breakout offerings on a variety of topics, a luncheon for ministers’ wives, exhibit area with ministry resources, and a 5K walk/run.

A screening of “War Room,” a new film from the creators of “Fireproof” and “Courageous,” will follow the Friday evening session.

Priority begins Friday at 1 p.m. with a missions celebration featuring North American and International Mission Board missionaries and Tajuan McCarty, founder of The WellHouse ministry that seeks to rescue victims of human trafficking. Clella Lee, a leadership consultant for National Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU), will also speak during the opening session.

Lee directs WMU’s Christian Women’s Leadership Center, which engages women in discovering and implementing leadership gifts in their churches and workplaces. Women desiring to express those gifts are sometimes hampered by demands on their time, or by other factors.

“I think women are hesitant sometimes; they don’t want to come across as too aggressive,” Lee said. “And so I think sometimes they aren’t always as apt to take a hold of those leadership skills they have…they have a sense of call or a sense of need, and recognize some of those gifts, but sometimes they’re hesitant.”

Lee will speak about the Christian Women’s Leadership Center, and also will lead three breakout sessions during the conference on the dynamics of a ministry family, the private spiritual life of a leader, and creative approached to missions in a church plant.

Rachel Lovingood will continue the leadership theme in the Friday evening session. The author, pastor’s wife, and speaker at LifeWay events will delve into how women can develop into the leaders God has created them to be. She also will unpack specific topics in several breakout sessions.

The Friday evening session also will feature author and missions advocate Kimberly Sowell, and worship led by Pastor Chad Ozee of Journey Church in Bourbonnais.

Saturday begins early with a 5K fun run or walk, and concludes with an afternoon session featuring Lori McDaniel, an International Mission Board global mission catalyst and church planter wife from Arkansas. Ministers’ wives also are invited to a luncheon with Kathy Litton, the North American Mission Board’s consultant for ministers’ wives ministry.

Cost is $25 for attenders who are part of an IBSA church, and $30 for all others. Conference information and registration is online now at A block of rooms has been reserved at the Decatur Conference Center and Hotel (across the street from Tabernacle Baptist Church). Contact the hotel at (217) 422-8800.

Meredith Flynn


Meredith is managing editor of the Illinois Baptist newspaper.