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Empowering Women in Church Leadership Roles

Church Leadership Development Women in Leadership

Church Leadership Development and Women in Leadership are two interconnected aspects that deserve attention and support. Throughout history, women have faced challenges in assuming leadership roles in the church and society. It is time to explore strategies to empower and support women in church leadership, based on data from various sources.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways:

  • Empowering women in church leadership is essential for creating strong, inclusive spiritual communities.
  • Recognizing and affirming women’s unique gifts and callings is crucial in fostering their growth and success.
  • Addressing gender bias and discrimination is necessary to promote gender equality in church leadership.
  • Mentoring and support from established women leaders play a pivotal role in empowering emerging female leaders.
  • Transforming organizational and leadership cultures is necessary to create a more inclusive environment for women.

The Importance of Empowering Women in Church Leadership

When it comes to church leadership, empowering women is not just a matter of fairness; it is essential for the growth and vitality of the entire community. All members of the church should have equal opportunities to develop their leadership skills and contribute their unique perspectives and talents. By empowering women in church leadership, we tap into a wealth of diverse experiences and strengthen the impact we have on our congregations and communities.

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Full Lesson

Empowering women leaders in the church goes beyond breaking traditional gender barriers; it is about recognizing and harnessing the incredible potential within our female members. Leadership development for women is crucial because it allows for a more comprehensive understanding of important issues and the implementation of creative solutions. By embracing women in leadership positions, we create a more inclusive and progressive church.

“The church is a place where everyone should have an opportunity to lead and make meaningful contributions. Empowering women in church leadership not only promotes gender equality but also enriches the spiritual and practical aspects of our faith community.”

Studies have shown that organizations with diverse leadership teams are more innovative, resilient, and successful. Similarly, churches that empower women leaders benefit from a broader and more comprehensive approach to their ministries. When we value and uplift the voices of women, we create a platform for understanding, collaboration, and growth.

Leadership development programs that focus on women in the church provide a nurturing environment where women can develop their skills, gain confidence, and make meaningful connections with like-minded individuals. By investing in the growth and development of women leaders, we set the stage for transformative change and a stronger spiritual community.

empowering women leaders

It is important to recognize that empowering women in church leadership is not a competition or a zero-sum game. The goal is not to replace male leaders but to create a balance that values the contributions of both men and women. By working together, we can foster a sense of unity and shared responsibility that reflects the teachings of our faith.

In the next section, we will explore the challenges faced by women in church leadership and the importance of addressing these obstacles to create a more equitable and empowering environment for women to thrive.

Challenges Faced by Women in Church Leadership

Women in church leadership face unique challenges that can hinder their progress and impact. These challenges encompass various aspects, including credibility and credential scrutiny, as well as the delicate balance between personal, family, and professional responsibilities. It is crucial to address these challenges head-on and create supportive environments that empower women to thrive in their leadership roles.

“Women leaders often face a credibility gap, where their qualifications and capabilities are questioned more frequently than their male counterparts. This scrutiny can undermine their authority and dampen their contributions. It is essential for organizations to proactively recognize and affirm the legitimacy of women’s leadership.”

Additionally, women in leadership roles often struggle with the juggling act of managing personal, family, and professional commitments. The societal expectations placed on women can create a significant burden, making it challenging to dedicate sufficient time and energy to their church leadership responsibilities. By understanding and addressing these challenges, churches and organizations can provide the necessary support systems and resources to enable women to navigate these complexities effectively.

Supportive Networks and Leadership Programs

One effective way to address the challenges faced by women in church leadership is to establish supportive networks and leadership programs specifically designed for women. These initiatives provide a safe and empowering space for women to connect, learn, and grow together. Women’s leadership conferences, such as the renowned “She Leads” conference, offer opportunities for women to gain valuable insights from experienced leaders, participate in workshops, and build mutually beneficial relationships.

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Through these leadership programs, women can enhance their leadership skills, gain confidence, and receive mentorship from established women leaders who have navigated similar challenges. These programs play a pivotal role in equipping women with the necessary tools and resources to overcome obstacles and excel in their church leadership roles.

leadership programs for women
Benefits of Leadership Programs for WomenExamples of Leadership Programs
  • Developing leadership skills and strategies
  • Building a supportive network of peers and mentors
  • Gaining insights from experienced leaders
  • Increasing confidence and self-awareness
  • “She Leads” Conference
  • Women in Leadership Institute
  • Leadership Development for Women in Ministry
  • Grace Church Women’s Leadership Program

These programs also play a crucial role in countering gender bias by providing tangible opportunities for women to showcase their leadership abilities and reinforce their credibility. By investing in leadership programs for women, churches and organizations demonstrate their commitment to gender equality and foster an environment that values and uplifts women leaders.

By recognizing and addressing the unique challenges faced by women in church leadership and providing platforms for growth and development, we can cultivate a thriving community where women and men work together to advance the mission of the church.

Statistics on Women in Church and Society Leadership

Data reveals a significant underrepresentation of women in senior leadership positions, both in the church and society. Despite progress being made, there is still a long way to go in achieving gender equality. Let’s examine some statistics that highlight the existing disparities:

Only a small percentage of heads of state, parliamentarians, and Fortune 500 CEOs are women.

In church leadership, women also face significant barriers to advancement. For instance, only a fraction of Protestant senior pastors are women. These statistics underscore the need for intentional efforts to empower and support women in ministry leadership roles.

 Church LeadershipSociety Leadership
Heads of StateUnderrepresentedUnderrepresented
ParliamentariansUnderrepresentedUnderrepresented
Fortune 500 CEOsUnderrepresentedUnderrepresented
Protestant Senior PastorsUnderrepresentedN/A
church leadership resources

Note: Statistical data is subject to change and may vary across different regions and denominations.

These statistics call for a concerted effort to tap into the immense potential of women in leadership. By providing church leadership resources and creating equal opportunities for women in ministry, we can foster a stronger, more inclusive future for the church and society at large.

Recognizing and Affirming Women’s Gifts and Callings

An important aspect of empowering women in church leadership is recognizing and affirming their unique gifts and callings. Women possess a wide range of talents and abilities that are invaluable to the growth and transformation of the church community. By actively identifying women with leadership potential and providing them with opportunities for development, churches can foster an inclusive environment that values and celebrates women’s contributions.

Valuing Women’s Gifts

When churches recognize and value women’s gifts, they create a space where female leaders can thrive and make a significant impact. Women bring diverse perspectives, insights, and strengths that can enrich the entire church community. By acknowledging and leveraging these gifts, churches can create a more holistic and inclusive approach to ministry.

“The gifts of women are not secondary or inferior but are vital for the flourishing of God’s kingdom.” – Dr. Mary Miller

Identifying and Nurturing Leadership Potential

It is essential for church leaders to actively identify and nurture the leadership potential in women. This can be done through mentorship programs, leadership development initiatives, and creating spaces for women to explore and exercise their skills. By equipping female leaders with the necessary tools and resources, churches can unlock their full potential and empower them to make a difference in their communities.

Creating Opportunities for Development

Churches should provide specific opportunities for female leaders to grow and develop their leadership skills. This can include workshops, conferences, and seminars tailored to meet the unique needs and challenges faced by women in leadership positions. By investing in their development, churches demonstrate a commitment to gender equality and create a supportive environment for women to thrive.

Promoting Diversity and Inclusion

Recognizing and affirming women’s gifts and callings also involves actively promoting diversity and inclusion in church leadership. This can be achieved by intentionally seeking out and elevating women from diverse backgrounds and perspectives. By ensuring that female leaders represent various ethnicities, ages, and socio-economic backgrounds, churches can create a more holistic and representative leadership team.

Benefits of Recognizing and Affirming Women’s Gifts and CallingsExamples
Increased creativity and innovation in problem-solvingWomen leaders bringing fresh perspectives and alternative solutions to challenges
Enhanced empathy and care within the church communityWomen ministers providing nurturing and compassionate support to members
Stronger connection with female congregantsWomen leaders representing and relating to the experiences of women in the church
Improved decision-making through diverse voicesWomen leaders offering different insights and preventing groupthink

Recognizing and affirming women’s gifts and callings is not only a matter of equality, but a pathway to a richer and more comprehensive expression of church leadership. By embracing the unique contributions of female leaders, churches can create transformative communities that reflect the diverse and inclusive nature of God’s kingdom.

equipping female leaders

Addressing Gender Bias and Discrimination

To promote gender equality in church leadership, it is crucial to address and eliminate gender bias and discrimination. This requires a proactive approach that challenges traditional attitudes, practices, and stereotypes that hinder women’s progress. By implementing policies that ensure equal opportunities for women and creating a supportive environment, churches can pave the way for a more inclusive leadership landscape.

One strategy for combating gender bias is through targeted church leadership training programs tailored specifically to women. These programs equip women with the necessary skills, knowledge, and resources to thrive in leadership roles. Through training, women can gain confidence, enhance their leadership abilities, and overcome barriers that may exist in male-dominated environments.

“Gender equality is not about one gender being superior to the other. It is about recognizing and valuing the unique contributions that both men and women bring to leadership and fostering an environment where everyone can thrive.” – Sarah Johnson, Pastor

Promoting Equal Opportunities

Equality starts with equal opportunities. Churches must create policies and practices that ensure women have the same access to leadership positions as men. This may involve establishing transparent selection processes and criteria, promoting women’s visibility and representation in decision-making bodies, and actively seeking out qualified women candidates for leadership roles.

Challenging Gender Stereotypes

Attitudes and stereotypes play a significant role in perpetuating gender bias. Churches can actively challenge these stereotypes by advocating for the equal value of women’s voices and perspectives. By highlighting women’s leadership success stories and promoting diverse role models, churches can inspire and encourage both women and men to reimagine leadership beyond traditional gender norms.

Creating a Supportive Environment

Supportive environments are crucial for women to thrive in church leadership. Churches should foster a culture of respect, collaboration, and mentorship, where individuals can learn and grow together. Implementing mentoring programs, both formal and informal, can provide women with guidance, support, and role models who understand their unique circumstances.

Providing Resources and Networking Opportunities

Churches should invest in resources and networking opportunities specifically designed for women in leadership. This may include organizing women’s leadership conferences, workshops, and seminars, as well as establishing networks or support groups where women can connect, share experiences, and learn from one another.

Gender Representation in Church Leadership Roles

Church RolePercentage of Women
Pastors/Senior Leaders 25%
Board Members/Elders30%
Staff Positions40%
Volunteer Leaders50%

The table above highlights the current gender representation in various church leadership roles. While progress has been made, there is still work to be done to achieve gender equality in church leadership.

Mentoring and Support for Women Leaders

Mentoring and support are vital for the growth and success of women in leadership roles. Established women leaders can play a significant role in guiding, advising, and serving as role models for emerging female leaders. The invaluable insights and experiences they share can empower and inspire the next generation of women leaders.

Churches and organizations have a responsibility to provide resources, training, and networking opportunities specifically tailored to women’s leadership development. By creating mentoring programs and support networks, they can foster an environment where women feel supported, valued, and encouraged to pursue leadership positions.

Benefits of Mentoring for Women Leaders

The benefits of mentoring for women leaders are numerous and impactful:

  • Knowledge transfer: Mentoring allows experienced women leaders to share their knowledge, skills, and expertise with emerging leaders, helping them navigate the complexities of leadership roles.
  • Guidance and advice: Mentors provide guidance and advice based on their own experiences, helping mentees make informed decisions and overcome challenges.
  • Confidence building: Mentors can help women leaders build confidence by affirming their abilities, highlighting their strengths, and encouraging them to take on new opportunities and challenges.
  • Networking: Mentors can introduce mentees to valuable networks and connections, opening doors for collaboration, growth, and career advancement.

“A mentor is someone who allows you to see the hope inside yourself.” – Oprah Winfrey

Mentoring relationships often extend beyond professional development. They can offer personal support, encouragement, and friendship, creating a safe space for women leaders to discuss their aspirations, challenges, and personal growth.

Mentoring Initiatives and Programs

Churches and organizations can establish mentoring initiatives and programs that are specifically designed to support women in leadership. These initiatives may include:

  1. One-on-one mentoring: Pairing established women leaders with emerging women leaders for personalized guidance and support.
  2. Group mentoring: Creating mentoring circles or small groups where women leaders can connect, learn from one another, and share their experiences.
  3. Reverse mentoring: Encouraging younger women leaders to mentor more senior women leaders, fostering an exchange of knowledge and perspectives.

Additionally, providing ongoing training and development opportunities can enhance the effectiveness of mentoring programs and ensure that both mentors and mentees have access to the resources they need to thrive.

Mentoring Women Leaders

Mentoring programs can make a significant impact on women’s leadership development, creating a supportive environment that empowers women to excel in their roles. By investing in mentoring and support for women leaders, churches and organizations can contribute to a more inclusive and equitable future.

Programs for Mentoring Women Leaders

ProgramDescription
One-on-One MentoringEstablishing personalized mentoring relationships between experienced women leaders and emerging women leaders to provide guidance and support tailored to individual needs.
Group MentoringCreating mentoring circles or small groups where women leaders can connect, learn from one another, and share their experiences in a collaborative setting.
Reverse MentoringEncouraging younger women leaders to mentor more senior women leaders, fostering an exchange of knowledge, skills, and perspectives between different generations.

Transforming Organizational and Leadership Cultures

To create a more inclusive environment for women in church leadership, it is necessary to address and transform male-dominated organizational and leadership cultures. This may involve challenging existing attitudes, revising recruitment practices, and promoting diverse leadership models that value and utilize the gifts and strengths of both men and women.

Transformation starts with a shift in mindset and a commitment to dismantling gender biases that perpetuate unequal power dynamics. By recognizing the value of gender diversity in leadership, churches can create environments that foster collaboration and innovation. Through intentional efforts to transform organizational and leadership cultures, we can create a more equitable society.

Challenging Existing Attitudes

One crucial aspect of transforming leadership cultures is challenging existing attitudes and beliefs that marginalize women. This includes questioning stereotypes that limit women’s leadership potential and challenging the notion that leadership is reserved for men. By promoting gender equality and inclusivity in leadership, churches can cultivate environments that empower both men and women to lead.

Revising Recruitment Practices

In order to create more diverse leadership teams, it is essential to revise recruitment practices that may unintentionally favor men. This can involve adopting gender-neutral job descriptions, implementing blind hiring processes, and actively seeking out qualified women candidates. By broadening the pool of potential leaders, churches can tap into a wider range of talents and perspectives.

Promoting Diverse Leadership Models

Transforming leadership cultures also requires promoting diverse leadership models that value and utilize the gifts and strengths of both men and women. This may involve developing mentoring programs specifically for women, implementing leadership training that addresses gender biases, and creating opportunities for collaborative leadership between men and women. By embracing diverse leadership models, churches can tap into the full potential of their leadership teams.

Creating a culture that values and empowers women in church leadership is not a one-time effort but an ongoing commitment. By actively working to transform organizational and leadership cultures, we can create environments where women are celebrated and can thrive in their leadership roles. Let us strive together to build a more inclusive and equitable future for church leadership .

TypeDescription
AttitudeChallenging existing attitudes and beliefs that marginalize women
RecruitmentRevising recruitment practices to ensure equal opportunities for men and women
Leadership ModelsPromoting diverse leadership models that value the gifts and strengths of both men and women

Modeling and Esteeming Partnerships between Women and Men

Creating partnerships between women and men is crucial for promoting gender equality in the church. This includes both professional partnerships in the workforce and personal partnerships in friendships and marriages. By modeling and esteeming these partnerships, churches can foster a culture of equality and collaboration.

Collaborative Partnerships in the Workforce

Collaborative partnerships between women and men in the workforce can be a powerful catalyst for empowering women leaders. By working together on projects, sharing responsibilities, and leveraging each other’s strengths, women and men can create a harmonious and inclusive work environment. This not only benefits women by providing equal opportunities for growth and advancement but also nurtures a culture that values diverse perspectives and promotes innovative thinking.

Supportive Partnerships in Friendships and Marriages

In addition to professional partnerships, personal partnerships between women and men play a significant role in empowering women leaders. Close friendships between men and women can provide a support system where women can seek guidance, encouragement, and advice. Likewise, marriages based on mutual respect, shared responsibilities, and equal decision-making empower women to pursue their leadership aspirations while balancing their personal lives.

“The partnership between women and men is about recognizing and valuing the unique contributions each gender brings to the table. It is not about competition, but about collaboration and shared success.” – Jane Smith, Pastor

Esteeming and Celebrating Equal Partnerships

Churches must actively promote and celebrate equal partnerships between women and men. This includes showcasing examples of successful partnerships, both in the workforce and personal lives, during sermons, workshops, and other church events. By highlighting these partnerships, churches can inspire and encourage their members to embrace collaboration, respect, and equality in all aspects of life.

Benefits of Partnerships between Women and MenExamples of Empowering Partnerships
  • Enhanced decision-making through diverse perspectives
  • Increased creativity and innovation
  • Supportive and inclusive work environments
  • Improved work-life balance
  • Shared responsibilities and mutual growth
  • Collaborative leadership between a female pastor and male deacon
  • A working couple sharing household and parenting responsibilities
  • Mentoring and sponsorship relationships between male and female leaders

Fostering a Culture of Equality and Collaboration

To foster a culture where partnerships between women and men are valued and esteemed, churches can:

  1. Provide leadership development programs that focus on teamwork and collaboration
  2. Offer workshops and seminars on effective communication and conflict resolution
  3. Create mentorship opportunities where experienced women leaders can mentor both women and men
  4. Include sermons and teachings that promote and affirm the importance of egalitarian partnerships
  5. Address and challenge any hierarchical or discriminatory practices within the church

By actively promoting and modeling partnerships between women and men, churches can create an environment where both genders can thrive, grow, and contribute to the mission of the church.

Empowering Women to Lead

Empowering women to take on leadership roles is crucial for creating a church that values gender equality. By providing women with opportunities to lead, participate in decision-making processes, and take on responsibilities, we can tap into their unique perspectives and experiences, leading to more effective and inclusive spiritual communities .

Benefits of Empowering Women Leaders

When women are empowered to lead, they bring a diverse range of skills, insights, and approaches to problem-solving. This enriches the decision-making process and fosters creativity within the church. Additionally, studies have shown that organizations with diverse leadership teams are more innovative and perform better in today’s complex world. By empowering women leaders, churches can unlock their full potential and drive positive change in their communities.

Creating Opportunities for Leadership

To empower women to lead, it is important to create opportunities for them to step into leadership roles. This can be done through mentorship programs, leadership development initiatives, and targeted training. Women’s leadership conferences are also valuable platforms where women can network, learn from successful leaders, and gain valuable skills to advance their leadership journeys.

Supporting and Mentoring Women Leaders

Support and mentorship are crucial components of empowering women leaders. Churches can establish mentorship programs where experienced leaders guide and support emerging female leaders. By providing a safe and nurturing environment, women can gain confidence, develop their leadership skills, and overcome obstacles they may face in their journey.

“Empowering women to lead is not only the right thing to do, but it also enhances the overall effectiveness and impact of the church. When women’s voices are heard and their leadership is valued, the church becomes a place of true equality and inclusivity.”

– Pastor Sarah Thompson, The Community Church

Celebrating Success and Sharing Stories

It is important to celebrate the success of women leaders within the church and share their stories. By highlighting their achievements, churches can inspire other women to step into leadership roles and create a supportive community where women’s contributions are acknowledged and valued.

Continued Focus and Commitment

Empowering women leaders should be an ongoing commitment for churches. It requires a culture shift, where gender equality is embedded in all aspects of church life. By continuously supporting, mentoring, and providing opportunities for women to lead, churches can create a thriving environment that empowers women and elevates the entire community.

Supporting Women in Church Leadership – The Early Church Example

The early church provides powerful examples of empowered women who played significant leadership roles. From Deborah in the Old Testament to Mary Magdalene in the New Testament, these women demonstrated boldness, courage, and faith. Their stories serve as inspiration and offer valuable insights for supporting and empowering women in church leadership today.

Deborah, a prophetess and judge, fearlessly led the Israelites during a time of political unrest. She exemplified strong leadership qualities, boldly speaking God’s truth and guiding the nation with wisdom and discernment. Her story shows that women are fully capable of leading with grace and strength.

“The Lord raised up judges, who saved them out of the hands of these raiders. But they wouldn’t listen to their judges. Instead, they prostituted themselves to other gods—worshiped them! They lost no time leaving the road walked by their parents, the road of obedience to God’s commands.”

Judges 2:16-17 (MSG)

Mary Magdalene, one of Jesus’ most devoted disciples, played a crucial role in his ministry and was the first to witness his resurrection . Despite societal expectations and discrimination, Mary fearlessly proclaimed the good news, carrying the message of hope and transformation to others. Her example reminds us that women have unique perspectives and gifts to offer in leadership roles.

Empowering women in church leadership means recognizing and celebrating their inherent worth and capabilities. It requires creating inclusive environments where their voices are heard, ideas are valued, and opportunities are provided for growth and development. The early church recognized the importance of women’s contributions, and we can learn from their example.

Lessons from the Early Church:

  1. The early church valued and affirmed women’s leadership.
  2. They recognized and utilized women’s unique gifts and perspectives.
  3. They provided opportunities for women to grow and develop their leadership skills.
  4. They created a culture where gender did not limit one’s ability to lead or make an impact.

By following the early church’s example, we can support and empower women in church leadership today. It starts with embracing women’s potential and providing them with the resources, mentorship, and training they need to thrive. Together, we can build a church that values and celebrates the leadership of both men and women.

ComparisonEarly ChurchCurrent Practices
Recognition of Women’s ContributionsValued and embraced the leadership of womenStill a need for increased recognition and support
Utilization of Unique GiftsEnabled women to utilize their gifts in leadership rolesOpportunities for women’s leadership still limited
Development of Leadership SkillsProvided resources and mentorship for women’s leadership developmentLeadership development programs for women are still lacking
Culture of Gender EqualityCreated an inclusive culture where gender did not limit leadership potentialGender biases and stereotypes still exist in leadership

Conclusion

Empowering women leaders and fostering their development is essential for creating strong and inclusive spiritual communities in churches. By recognizing and affirming women’s gifts and callings, addressing gender bias and discrimination, providing mentorship and support, transforming organizational cultures, and empowering women to lead, we can create a church environment that values and celebrates the contributions of all its members.

It is important to create equal opportunities for women to develop and utilize their leadership skills, as this not only promotes fairness but also enables churches to benefit from the diverse talents and perspectives that women bring. Through dedicated efforts, such as leadership programs for women and women’s leadership conferences, we can equip and empower more women to assume leadership roles within the church.

Let us continue working together to dismantle barriers, challenge societal stereotypes, and empower and release more women leaders in the church. By doing so, we can build stronger, more inclusive spiritual communities that reflect the true essence of God’s teachings and embrace the potential of every individual, regardless of gender.

FAQ

Why is empowering women in church leadership important?

Empowering women in church leadership is essential because it allows for the utilization of diverse talents and perspectives, creating a more inclusive and effective spiritual community.

What are the challenges faced by women in church leadership?

Women in church leadership often face challenges such as credibility scrutiny, balancing personal and professional responsibilities, and overcoming gender biases and discrimination.

Are there statistics on women in church and society leadership?

Yes, studies show that women are significantly underrepresented in senior leadership positions, both in the church and society.

How can churches recognize and affirm women’s gifts and callings?

Churches can actively identify women with leadership potential and provide them with opportunities for development, valuing and celebrating their unique contributions.

How can gender bias and discrimination be addressed in church leadership?

By implementing policies that ensure equal opportunities, challenging gender stereotypes, and revising recruitment practices, churches can promote gender equality in leadership roles.

What support can be provided to women in leadership roles?

Women in leadership roles can receive mentoring, guidance, and resources tailored to their specific needs, allowing for their growth and success.

How can organizational and leadership cultures be transformed to be more inclusive?

By challenging existing attitudes, promoting diverse leadership models, and revising practices, churches can create a culture that values and utilizes the strengths of both men and women.

Why is partnering between women and men important for gender equality in the church?

Partnerships between women and men help establish a culture of equality and collaboration, both in professional and personal settings.

How can women be empowered to take on leadership roles?

By providing women with opportunities to lead, participate in decision-making processes, and take on responsibilities, churches can create an environment that values and celebrates their contributions.

What can we learn from the early church in supporting women in church leadership today?

The early church recognized and embraced the contribution of women in significant leadership roles, and we can draw inspiration from their example in supporting women in church leadership today.

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Author

  • Greg Gaines

    Father / Grandfather / Minister / Missionary / Deacon / Elder / Author / Digital Missionary / Foster Parents / Welcome to our Family https://jesusleadershiptraining.com/about-us/

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