women; ministry to women
serves as Women’s Ministries director of the Ohio
District, and is working on her doctorate of ministry
with a focus on ministry to women. Gross recently spoke
with Darla Knoth, managing editor for Woman’s
did you feel a call to ministry?
I cannot remember a time when I was not aware of a call
into ministry. For many years, my heart’s desire
was to be a missionary. Many times I would plead with
the Lord to give me the nations as an inheritance.
from a ministry trip to France, the Lord spoke to me about
the need for ministry in the United States. I felt God
speaking to me that He needed pastors with a missions
heart in the States too.
do you define a woman in ministry?
Every woman who knows Jesus as Savior should be a woman
in ministry. God doesn’t need everyone in the pulpit.
He needs women in the home, in the marketplace, in the
schools and throughout our world. We all have the opportunity
to be an influence for Christ. I have not always had the
same level of involvement, but I’ve always seen
my life as a ministry unto God and to people. When my
children were small, I remained active in the local church
but my primary ministry was to raise them for the Lord.
Success in that ministry lends credibility to my ministry
do you see as the needs of women today?
Women need to develop meaningful relationships. They need
to encounter women of integrity who can help them learn
how to be faithful wives, mothers and women, and they
need to be given the opportunity to make a difference
in their world.
Ministries must capture women’s attention. We must
reach out to them through their felt needs and win the
opportunity to share Christ and His principles. In our
local church, we have many ministry groups. I have been
surprised to see the effectiveness of two groups which
seem opposite in nature. We provide kickboxing classes
on Monday evenings and, without advertisement, we are
reaching into our community. Once a month a quilting group
meets. It is not the older women of the church who make
up the largest part of this group. The younger women want
to learn a lost art. Kickboxing and quilting may not seem
like spiritual activities, but a lot of informal mentoring
What advice do you give to women who want to become involved
in local church ministry?
Even if you are very busy with work and children, find
a place in the local church to minister. Many women have
a low opinion of what they can contribute. One of the
most helpful women in our church feels like she has no
talents to give the Lord. But our church could not minister
effectively without her work behind the scenes. You may
teach a class or be an assistant teacher. You may provide
a food dish when there is a need, or arrange flowers for
the sanctuary. You may be a prayer warrior on behalf of
your pastor and the congregation. The nature of the job
itself is not as important as your participation and faithfulness.
If your local
ministry is not providing what you are interested in,
be a catalyst for change. Don’t throw out what is
being done or what has been done in the past. Offer your
time and efforts to your pastor and begin a ministry group
that will minister to you.
comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.