Five years ago, Edward Dartey wrote "An Easter shout-out to women in ministry." The following is an adapted version of Dartey's tribute in honor of Women's History Month.
I want to share this message with friends here in Ghana and with those living afar so that Christians everywhere re-dedicate themselves to Christian ministry. I address women especially and lift you up for your courage in serving the Lord. The power of women in ministry is a way to rebuild Christ's church.
Traditionally, in Africa, in our homes, workplaces and even in our churches, women are considered to be the lowest members of the family. They often have no say in the decision-making process. They are encouraged to stay at home to work in the kitchen and on the farm, while males are sent to school to build themselves up with academic excellence.
Though I am not a theologian, the little that I have seen from the biblical perspective is that women made the most of the few chances they had, even in the Old Testament. In the New Testament, women contributed enormously to the Lord's ministry. But despite all this, they were left behind.
Are women weak and low? No! I am very grateful for the courage that Mary Magdalene exhibited at the tomb after the resurrection. She put fear aside, gathered her courage and went to the tomb. Jesus revealed himself to her. She was the first to carry the Good News to the other disciples, who stopped her because she was not considered worthy to hold to the word. What discrimination! They did not believe her.
But where were the men Jesus spent time with? Some of them continued to deny Jesus' resurrection until he revealed himself. All these men were hiding. The courage of Mary to carry the word to the disciples was something we must look at. Something we must revisit and emulate.
Having said this in our present age, it would be prudent to utilize this power of our dear women in our ministries by giving them the maximum support in every aspect.
I commend the Mennonite Women organization and other groups of women for all their efforts to support mission work. They need to be supported and encouraged to spread their wings in order to help others around the world. Let's put women first so that they can exhibit their gifts and carry the church to the next level.