3 Reasons Why Some Women Skip Women’s Ministry Events
When I accepted Jesus Christ ten years ago, I was so hungry and desperate to be a part of anything that dealt with learning more about God. The very first ministry I joined at the church our family attended was a Tuesday morning Bible study. It was full of a hundred or so older women, who I probably had nothing in common with, yet after my first visit, I was amazed at the phenomenal teaching from the female speaker. I grew so much at that church through women’s ministry alone. However, our family has moved several times, which has caused us to find new church homes, and some of the women’s ministry events had me scratching my head.
As women, we need each other. And we can grow spiritually and make lifelong friends at a strong women’s ministry within the church.
It’s a new year and it might be time to revamp your women’s ministry.
Here are three reasons why some women might skip ministry events:
1. Women Don’t Know Women’s Ministry Exists at Your Church.
We were new in town and new to the church. We had attended the church for several weeks and I had no idea the church even had a women’s ministry. I finally asked someone if they did. Needless to say, I never regularly attended the women’s ministry events at that church because their events came across to me as an afterthought.
At the church I described in the opening paragraph, women’s ministry had a table set up right outside the sanctuary with information about upcoming events with at least three representatives from women’s ministry to greet new women and to answer questions.
That particular women’s ministry is still thriving. They make themselves immediately available to women right after service. By doing this they get to actually meet and talk to women on a personal level. They can get a sense of which ministries might work best for each woman. For example; a young mother with small children might prefer MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) which a lot of churches offer. Or an older woman who works during the day, might prefer the women’s Bible study in the evenings, or the stay-at-home mother might prefer the Bible study during the day.
The bottom line is, your women’s ministry at your church has to make an intentional effort at being visible and available to women on a regular basis. There’s this misconception that just because a ministry is available at the church people will find it and attend.
A woman is more likely to attend a women’s ministry event after she has personally met some of the leaders and given a personal invitation.
2. You Don’t Offer Childcare
Yes, there are a lot of women who attend women’s ministry events who do not have a need for childcare, however, there are plenty of women who need childcare. I have been a member of two different churches that have thriving women’s ministries, and they each offer free childcare for all women’s ministry events.
And then I’ve attended a few churches that did not offer childcare at all. And if they did, they charged a fee; something like $10 per child for childcare.
The churches that offered free childcare used the time the children were in childcare to teach Biblical lessons. The churches that required a fee for childcare, did nothing but put on a movie.
Isn’t that interesting?
I am convinced women will attend women’s ministry events if they know their children will be in a safe environment learning while they are learning too.
You might say your church cannot afford to offer free childcare. Well, maybe not right away, but I believe through prayer and proper planning, your church can eventually offer free childcare. Don’t give women reasons to stay away, and not offering childcare is certainly one way.
And believe it or not, there are probably many women in your church who will volunteer to teach children Biblical lessons during women’s ministry event, if given the opportunity.
Referencing back to the church in the opening paragraph, childcare was part of their operating budget. In addition, they also collected a small offering during the Bible studies to help offset the costs. They recommended $1 to $2 per week, per woman, in the offering. Some women could not give anything and that was totally fine. Yet, there were plenty of women who could give, and they gave above the suggested $2 per week.
Remember, women’s ministry is an opportunity to make disciples of Jesus Christ. Jesus loves the little children. God will provide if you ask Him and seek His wisdom in this area. Take the proper steps. Background check everyone, and trust God by providing free childcare.
3. Teaching Is Not Biblical, Or Events Are Useless
Speaking for myself, I do not like to listen to motivational speakers in the name of Jesus Christ. I don’t want to hear someone try to pump me up and attach Jesus’s name to their ministry. I actually want to hear good teaching from the Bible.
Back to the church in the opening paragraph; I cannot tell you how spoiled we were at that church with amazing women teachers. These women had advanced Biblical training, and yet, were able to teach in a practical way. Again, I grew so much at that church! I never missed Bible study! I was bummed out when we had breaks.
I have also been to women’s ministry events and I felt as if I were watching a performance. The speakers had the audience shouting and cheering, yet nothing remotely related to the Bible was being preached.
I have been to some women’s ministry events that were nothing more than an emotional high.
Don’t cheat your women with a big name just to draw people in. Take time to understand the background of the women who will teach the women in your church. Make sure their teaching will align with your church’s mission statement.
Pray and take time in finding the best fit for your women’s ministry.
And then there are useless, give us something to do, women’s ministry events. I’ve been to churches where the entire women’s ministry revolved around a painting class, pottery class, sewing class, or going out to dinner. These types of events are fun and useful at times, but they positively cannot be the basis of your women’s ministry. For some women this might be fine. But for most women who are looking to grow spiritually with other women, this isn’t okay.
The one church I attended where this was the basis for their women’s ministry, I never attended the events. In addition, attendance in women’s ministry overall was low at that church. For me, I wanted to converse with other women about God’s Word. I wanted to hear great teachings. I wanted to gain wisdom from seasoned Christian women. I didn’t want to paint every week. I can paint at home with my children. (And painting at home with my children never happens either because I am severely craft challenged)
God has given you the unique opportunity to serve women in your church. There are many factors that might keep some women away, but I encourage you to pray and lead your women’s ministry the way God will guide you. Don’t allow ideas to pop into your head and you run with it. Pray and develop your thoughts for women’s ministry.
Get to know the women at your church on a personal level. Don’t purposely keep yourself at a distance to give yourself the appearance of a leader. True leadership is humble and in the midst of the women they serve.
Find out what your women need. What type of events will bring them to women’s ministry events?
And remember all women are different. Some women are quiet and shy, and some women are outgoing, but we all want to feel like we belong. Be on top of the gossip and cliques that so easily form within women’s ministry, and put an end to it immediately!
Make your women’s ministry a safe, loving, and caring environment with sound Biblical teaching, where women know Jesus Christ is at the center.