International Visitors Bring Challenge and Encouragement to South Asian Women Leaders
THE important role played by women in politics, business, social, academic and other areas was recognised at the South Asia Zonal Senior Women’s Leadership Seminar, held in Thiruvananthapuram, in the Indian state of Kerala. The gathering, which took the theme 'Extra Miles', was made up of territorial women's ministries leaders from the various territories that make up The Salvation Army's South Asia Zone, along with a number of corps officers. They were joined by special guests: the World President of Women's Ministries, Commissioner Silvia Cox; World Secretary for Women's Ministries, Commissioner Nancy Roberts; and Zonal Secretary for Women's Ministries, Commissioner Nemkhanching (Nu-i).
The seminar was hosted by the India South Western Territory, whose leaders, Commissioners Samuel and Bimla Charan, chaired the welcome session at which all delegates were garlanded. Women officers from territorial headquarters performed a cultural welcome song before Commissioners Cox and Roberts shared their experiences of being women leaders.
The rest of the seminar included the sharing of experiences and information. Success stories of various activities such as self-help groups were shared, demonstrating how women have the capacity to explore and solve the issues that surround them. Bible studies, group discussion, group prayer and meditation served as channels for delegates to seek to improve effectiveness in their areas of service. Commissioner Cox's presentation on the servant leadership of Christ was an effective platform for discussion, which brought up ways in which serving others and serving God are interconnected. Commissioner Roberts spoke about the importance of protecting children and of leadership styles.
During the event, Commissioner Silvia Cox released a book Finding New Hope in Jesus – Part VI – a collection of Bible studies from South Asia Zone writers.
The seminar ended with an inspiring message from Commissioner Cox, following which the delegates rededicated themselves to God at the mercy seat. The 'Extra Miles' theme was summed up succinctly as being a reminder that 'the first mile is compulsion – the extra mile proves the love, concern and eternal values of the Christian perspective'.
Lieut-Colonel Marieke Venter (Command President of Women's Ministries, Bangladesh Command) reflected on the seminar afterwards: 'I have learned new ways; leadership qualities based on the Bible and precious experiences of other delegates to go the extra mile.'
Report by Major Roy Joseph
Editor, India South Western Territory
Tags: South Asia