Seven women will be honored by Reverend Dr. Glendon E. Rolle for their faithful service to the Zion Yamacraw Baptist Church (ZYBC) ministry as the church hosts its second Women in White conference.
Shirley Greene, Dianne Rolle, Angela Cartwright, Mazie Simmons, Enid Ruddock, Wilhelmina Thurston, and Francina Barr-Rolle are the women to be recognized during the second conference, which is a service of celebration, empowerment, and development of women.
Grace Toote, co-chair of the conference, said the goal is to honor and uplift each other.
“We want to encourage women to live an exemplary life in our church and community as we walk worthy to fulfill the work that God has assigned to the church,” said Toote. “Our conference is also held to honor and recognize our church mothers, who are pillars of endurance and fortitude.”
The conference, scheduled for February 26-27 at ZYBC, is open to women from all denominations and is expected to engage and empower women of all ages.
“I’m excited and prayerful that this conference will serve as a forum, whereby women can be spiritually energized and motivated to become game changers to fulfill God’s calling on their lives,” said Evangelist Patricia Hamilton, president of the Women’s Ministry at ZYBC.
“The aim of the women at ZYBC is to inspire and empower women spiritually for the glory of God. We encourage our women by letting them know that there is no limit when it comes to where they can go or what they can achieve, if they allow God to direct their path,” said Hamilton.
The ZYBC Women in White conference celebrates older mothers and seeks to empower and influence the mindset of its membership and the wider community.
This year’s Women in White conference, held under the theme, “Women of Strength and Courage”, will feature an empowerment seminar on Saturday from 8:45 a.m. to 2 p.m, which will be addressed by some of the country’s most inspiring women in kingdom leadership – Dr. Joanne Butler of Kemp Road Ministries, who will encourage them to be inspired to take courage in times of crisis and urged to love unconditionally; Pastor Deneace Lloyd, who will speak on the topic of love in crisis; and Marisa Mason-Smith, who will address the topic of courage in crisis.
Saturday’s session will also focus on health and wellness, mindfulness, healthy lifestyles, and the importance of mental health. Marlene McKinney will speak about healthy food options; Dr. Tonette Hanna will give tips that can assist women with living a healthier lifestyle and Lacricia Swain will address conference attendees on how to stay fit.
“I can assure you that this is a superpower one-day event that you don’t want to miss as we will aim to cover all aspects related to women,” said Hamilton.
During what has been termed “Celebration Sunday”, Reverend Diana Francis, lead pastor at First Baptist Church, will deliver the message at the 3 p.m. service, during which the seven honorees will be honored by Rev. Dr. Glendon E. Rolle.
The Women in White conference is also expected to connect women from the wider community, forging friendships that they would not have taken the time to cultivate on a day-to-day basis.
“Overall, my desire is to create an atmosphere whereby we can influence participants to become more attentive and empathetic to others that are marginalized,” said the women’s ministry president.
Hamilton added that despite the setbacks experienced these past two years, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the women of ZYBC are blessed to be alive.
“I anticipate and look forward to an exciting conference and a grand celebration to climax this year’s Women in White initiative,” she said.
The Women in White conference is also used as a fundraiser to assist with ongoing church projects and outreach initiatives in the community.
The second conference comes on the heels of the first conference that was held in 2021, under the theme, “Celebrating and Empowering Women as We Build God’s Kingdom”. The women were reminded that they needed to be acceptable to God in all that they do, approved by Him because He gave them authority, and complete in Him by learning His attributes, qualities and character.
The vision of Women in White started with honoring and recognizing women for their roles in the family, church, community and being their sister’s keeper.
The organization’s goal is to honor and uplift each other to live an exemplary life in their church and community as they work to fulfill the work that God has assigned to the church.
During the first conference, women of the church 70 years and older were recognized for their endurance and fortitude.