The work of a minister to women is significant to the local church since more than half of any congregation is comprised of women. Jesus regarded women as significant partners in the Gospel and so should the local church. Not only should women in this position have a deep and abiding personal relationship with the Lord, they should be called to encourage women in their spiritual journey, help them embrace Christ through His word, and mobilize women to be sent and fulfill the Great Commission.
Many times, the Women’s Ministry Director will report to the staff person who oversees adult ministry or education ministry, but there are also times when she may report directly to the senior pastor. Often, women in this leadership role are considered volunteers, but there are larger churches where women are either paid as a part-time staff position or full-time position. It is not uncommon for women to assume multiple roles depending on her gifts and abilities.
Qualifications for a Minister to Women include a divine sense of calling, and a desire to help all women in the local church find opportunities for spiritual growth through Bible studies. They should also consider ways women can gather to foster biblical community and fulfill opportunities of serving one another. Many women’s ministry leaders are vital to the missions team of a local church and help enlist women who are willing to serve in various capacities. Women’s ministry leaders generally possess strong administrative skills and have a commitment to submit to ministry leaders.
There are five different areas that women’s ministry leaders often take responsibility.
The first is in the area of discipleship. The women’s ministry leader should oversee women’s Bible studies, which includes choosing studies, enlisting leaders, communicating information to the women in the church, and coordinating the logistics of gathering. Many women’s ministry leaders enjoy leading and teaching the Bible, but some are more comfortable delegating this to others who are gifted in this area.
The second area is developing a ministry focused on prayer. While she may lead a pray ministry, the focus is that every aspect of ministry should help women pray together and pray for one another.
The third area is evangelism. The Women’s Ministry Director should have a heart to reach the lost and equip others in ways to share their faith. She should work with the rest of the staff if there are opportunities to connect with the lost or develop an area of ministry that gives women intentional opportunities for prayer.
The fourth area is missions. Some churches will choose to offer coordinated mission programs, such as Women on Mission through Woman’s Missionary Union, but some leaders will help resource others in the church for mission opportunities through the community, the region, and the world. Some leaders will coordinate international trips and work with missionary partners in others parts of the world.
The last area of focus is on building community. Those leaders are looking for ways to help women connect, develop friendships, and provide entry points for women to meet one another. Sometimes this will happen through events or it may happen through small group meetings in homes. Creativity in this area is limitless.
In addition to these areas, leaders must be equipped to handle situations where women are in crisis. Depending on the size of the church and the church location, many churches develop a directory of resources in their area. Whether it’s a list of hotlines or counseling services, a women’s ministry leader should be prepared to encounter those who are hurting.
Preparation begins with a calling from the Lord, and a personal passion for this kind of ministry. Many times, those who are called into women’s ministry, have already built relationships within the local church, have a led a Bible study, or coordinated ministry events. It is a great opportunity for churches to seek women within the local church that they can develop and raise them into leadership.
In regards to education, many formal leaders will have a bachelor’s degree, and there are more and more women equipped through seminary courses. A liberal arts degree is often helpful, as this position is broad in scope, but there is a key need for someone with administrative skills. Most importantly, this position should be filled with a woman who is truly walking daily with the Lord and willing to be faithful, available, and teachable.
While every church needs someone to fulfill this role, the majority of positions are not paid positions. Even so, women shouldn’t discount their calling in this area, but take each step toward obedience. When women’s ministry is strong in the local church, there is a good chance that the overall spiritual health of the local church is strengthened.
Women are generally selected by a minister of education or by someone with that equivalence in their role. Often, the senior pastor will make the final approval and there are times when a committee is present. Someone who is pursuing this type of position should be prepared to provide their information to state convention offices or women’s seminary leaders who may be connected with job opportunities.
The skills and qualities required of a minister to women may also qualify them to lead the small group ministry of a church, lead the preschool/children’s ministry, communications ministry, a ministry to families, and many other positions. Some women, depending on their age, may begin in girls ministry or they may lead a women’s Bible study at their church. Women have much to offer to the local church and are qualified to serve in several capacities.