Ministers’ Wives and guests enjoyed a time of fellowship and encouragement at their annual luncheon at the Georgia Baptist Convention in Fayetteville on Nov. 12. MYRIAH SNYDER/Index
FAYETTEVILLE – As members gathered for the Georgia Baptist Minsters’ Wives annual time of fellowship at the 2019 GBC Annual Meeting, Ethel Wynn was presented the Trudy Price Award.
Wynn is the wife of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board’s retiring assistant executive director Larry. Married for nearly 47 years, they have three children and five grandchildren.
In addition to her role as the former pastor’s wife at Hebron Baptist Church in Dacula for 33 years before Larry began serving with the Mission Board, Ethel put her education degrees to good use as a teacher with Gwinnett County Public Schools for 24 years. She also spent an additional six years as an administrator.
As a ministry wife for 40 years, she complemented her husband’s ministry by serving in the choir and orchestra, teaching Sunday school, playing the piano, working as a VBS director, and organizing summer youth retreats. In addition, she has served as president of the Georgia Baptist Ministers Wives ministry.
The Price Award is named in honor of Trudy Price, whose husband, Nelson, was the longtime pastor of Roswell Street Baptist Church in Marietta. Mary Cox, the Georgia Baptist Mission Board’s state missionary for ministry to ministers’ wives, presided over the event and presented Wynn the award.
“When we met, she knew when she was nine years old that she was going to marry a pastor,” Larry said in comments about his wife. However, she did not tell him that when the two were dating. Later, when he answered the call to ministry, she shared that information with him. When Larry asked her why she hadn’t told him, she replied “I had to know God called you and not me.”
“That speaks to her character,” Larry added.
He shared more on her unique character as a pastor’s wife, an educator, and – primarily, he said with pride – as a mother. He recounted that she always used to tell the staff wives at their church, “Be yourself. Don’t be who somebody else wants you to be. And serve where God wants you.”
“I’m the one that’s honored to be here among you. You are heroes – superheroes – as you sit in your churches,” Ethel said.
When Cox called Wynn to inform her she was receiving the award, she told Cox, “But Mary, I’ve never written a book. I’ve never led famous Bible studies.”
Cox replied, “That’s not what it’s about.”
She encouraged pastors’ wives to seek community among other ministry wives – pointing out how much easier that will be with the regionalization of the Mission Board.
Authenticity is key
April Duren, a member of the Gospel group Overflow based out of Brentwood, Tennessee, provided the special music for the event. Lisa McKay, a pastor’s wife in Alabama, was the keynote speaker.
McKay and her husband, Luke, have gotten into “junking” (essentially antiquing) in the last few years since their children have gotten older.
She’s learned a few things in her time digging alongside her husband through other’s trash to find treasure.
- Always beware of items that are too shiny for their intended purpose or age.
- Always look for items that are stamped or otherwise engraved by their maker.
- Know the value of what you possess.
After reading 1 Peter 1:3-7, she sees some parallels applicable to the ministers’ wife life.
- Beware of a faith that seems too perfect.
- Be known by your maker, not your marks.
- A tried faith is a ministry family’s most treasured possession.
“A call to ministry cannot be undone, however it can be unguarded and unvalued,” McKay shared.
In guarding your ministry and serving alongside your husband, authenticity is key.
“It’s all that we’ve got to offer – every bit of who you are,” she concluded. “Be yourself – that superhero that God created you to be.”
Bucky Kennedy Ministries gifted each minister’s wife and guest present a copy of Lea Epling’s Bible study, “Gracious Me.”
At the conclusion of the luncheon, whose theme was “Marvel” and theme verse was Prov. 31:25, outgoing President Christa Skipper passed the baton to the 2020 officers.
Melissa Childs, wife of Andy, pastor of Ebenezer Baptist in Toccoa, was announced as president. Courtney Peyton, wife of Joe, pastor of Riverbend Baptist in Gainesville was announced as vice president. Kelly Johnson, wife of Mike, pastor of Rocky Mount Baptist in Rocky Mount, was announced as secretary/treasurer.
Georgia Baptist Ministers’ Wives’ events for 2020 include the Ministers’ Wives Winter Retreat on Jan. 23-25 in Peachtree City, Bivocational Pastors/Wives Retreat in St. Simons on May 1-3, Ministers Wellness Retreat in Toccoa on Sept. 9-11, and next year’s Ministers’ Wives Luncheon at the GBC Annual Meeting in Macon on Nov. 10.