Church Lady: Women and faith –Two upcoming events for the ladies

Vicky Wauterlek, founder and president of Hands of Hope, a not-for profit organization that works to break the cycle of poverty in Africa will speak at Marco Presbyterian Church’s Jan. 10 Women’s Winter Bible Study Seminar and Luncheon. 
 /Kathleen Tuttle Special to the Eagle

Photo by Kathleen G. Tuttle

Vicky Wauterlek, founder and president of Hands of Hope, a not-for profit organization that works to break the cycle of poverty in Africa will speak at Marco Presbyterian Church’s Jan. 10 Women’s Winter Bible Study Seminar and Luncheon. /Kathleen Tuttle Special to the Eagle

Lynda Randall, gospel singer and Gaither Homecoming artist, will speak at Capri Christian Church’s Jan. 18 Women’s Conference. 
 /Kathleen Tuttle Special to the Eagle

Photo by Kathleen G. Tuttle

Lynda Randall, gospel singer and Gaither Homecoming artist, will speak at Capri Christian Church’s Jan. 18 Women’s Conference. /Kathleen Tuttle Special to the Eagle

A November editorial in the Naples Daily News stated, “everyone should go to church.” They didn’t advocate a particular theology, just an opportunity to enjoy a variety of arts and entertainment for free or low cost.

Their focus was on the music but there are many avenues for personal growth on Marco. Yes, there are concerts bluegrass, classical, contemporary, gospel and jazz. There are also art and fashion shows, Bible studies, cultural series, theater including an upcoming production of Frankenstein and a Jewish movie festival. There’s also great food, shared dish suppers, spaghetti dinners and new this year a Deli Fest. But this column is for the ladies.

Marco Presbyterian Church will hold a Friday, Jan. 10 women’s seminar and Capri Christian Church will host a Jan. 18 women’s conference.

The Presbyterian seminar, entitled “A Faith that Works,” features Vicky Wauterlek, founder and president of Hands of Hope, a not-for profit organization that works to break the cycle of poverty in Africa. The seminar is a prelude to their Women’s Winter Bible Study: Beth Moore’s “James Mercy Triumphs.”

“She (Wauterlek) is a good example of what our winter study on James is about: ‘I will show you my faith by what I do,’ ” said Linda Larson, Women’s Winter Bible Study team leader.

“We want women to be inspired, to put their faith in action,” said Larson via a phone interview. “Its such a good study; I did it all summer.” Everyone is welcome no matter what her background.

Keynote speaker Wauterlek, a humble woman with a hearty laugh and a can do attitude refers to herself as “most of all normal,” prefers to be an encourager rather than a public speaker

In addition to heading Hands of Hope, she is currently on the Board of Zambia Works, and has also served on the Board of Trustees for Trinity International University and the Board of Directors of the Women’s Track Mission America. She resides in Barrington, Illinois where she also teaches Bible study.

Wauterlek is passionate about breaking the cycle of poverty in Africa. She had been exploring the role of women in the church and was offered the position of women’s ministry leader in her church. She wanted to delve into something different, but wasn’t sure what and turned them down. They asked her again and asked her to pray about it.

“I reflected on, Titus 2, role of older woman in the church and I took to the Lord,” said Wauterlek via phone. She said yes but it was to be on her terms. It was to be a high impact ministry, pushing the limits to see how far women could go for the kingdom of God.

She led a group of women to Nigeria where she observed first hand the cycle of poverty and the startling conditions affecting women and girls due to the cultural practice of early childhood marriages. Upon her return she reflected upon the role of women. Why not have women do what they do best, help other women and children? Thus Hands of Hope was born in the late 1990s. The grassroots effort of just a few now addresses agricultural, economic, educational, health and clean water through fundraising and cooperative relationships with other organizations. Hands of Hope works with African leaders such as Mrs. Janet Museveni, First Lady of Uganda and Dr. Inonge Mbikusita-Lewanika, former Zambian Ambassador to the United States. In addition to Nigeria, the organization is committed to ongoing, sustainable systems in Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, and Zambia.

Although Wauterlek’s faith led her on this journey, the non-profit is not a Christian organization. “We can be united across political, economic and religious issues,” she said.

“When extreme poverty is the culture of the community, there’s no hope just despair,” said Wauterlek. Her reward is seeing people in the most desperate stages of poverty break the cycle.

Her goal on Marco is to help women understand that God can use them mightily; He has a purpose for them, to challenge them to embrace that purpose and to run hard.

Lynda Randle is the guest speaker at Capri’s “A Woman After God’s Own Heart Conference” on Jan. 18 followed by a concert the next evening. Her goal is to create an event that appeals to women of all walks of life and to see women come together as one, finding purpose and passion for living a vibrant Christian life. This will be her second appearance at Capri.

“Lynda is always passionate and engaging, and I’m so looking forward to the words and story she will share with our women,” wrote Tabitha Dawes, director of Capri’s Women’s Ministry in an email. “I know what can happen when women feel a deep connection to their God, their church and their community.” However, Dawes is most excited about what happens after the conference, when lives are changed.

The church is working on taking their women’s ministry to the next level by offering an opportunity to strengthen their relationship to God and decided a women’s conference was the best way. “Linda was a natural choice for us as we had already established a relationship with her, knew the power of her story, and felt she could connect to a variety of women,” wrote Dawes.

Reached by telephone on Christmas Eve, Randal took a break from cooking for friends and family. The bubbly, vivacious singer is best known for her Gaither Homecoming videos. Her mellow alto voice has created opportunities for her to minister across the United States and around the world. This will be her second appearance at Capri but first she traveled to England for London’s largest Christian New Year’s Eve celebration at Kingsway International Christian Centre. From Capri she will travel to Alabama, Georgia and Ontario.

On Christmas Eve, however, there was a wistful note in her voice as she shared how she missed her mom, Maxine Tait who passed away on Sept. 12. She had been thanking God for her godly mother, praying and thinking of her mother’s first Christmas in heaven.

She recalled how her good friend and mentor Gloria Gaither wrote to her, ministering and encouraging her as she sat at her mother’s bedside three days before she died.

She shared how her daddy, the late Pastor Nathel Tait, led her to the Lord at their kitchen table at age 12. Aside from her parents and Gloria Gaither, other heroes in her life are Abraham, because he had faith without seeing, and Mary, the mother of Jesus, who with faith and humility bore the Son of God. “I can’t imagine the faith that took,” she said.

Her musical hero is the late, great, gospel singer Mahalia Jackson. In 2005, Randle won a Dove Award for her album, “A Tribute to Mahalia Jackson.”

“I like to take hope to my concerts and leave people to hope,” she said. “So many people are hurting and depressed. I know what it is to be a caregiver, burning the candle on both ends, praying. I’m real. I have real problems. I have down days, too.”

“As women don’t have to be super heroes,” said Randel. “We don’t have to do it all, to carry everyone. We can just be. Jesus loves us just the way we are.”

If you go

Marco Presbyterian Church’s Women’s Winter Bible Study Seminar and Luncheon

When: Seminar and luncheon 9 a.m., Jan. 10. Bible study 9:30 a.m., Fridays, Jan. 17 to March 21

Where: Marco Presbyterian Church, 875 West Elkcam Circle, Marco Island

Cost: Seminar and lunch $20; Bible Study $20; both events $35

Information:; Linda Larson 239-389-4744.

Capri Christian Church’s Women’s Conference and Gospel Concert with Lynda Randle

When: Conference 11 a.m., Jan. 18. Concert 6 p.m., Jan. 19

Where: Capri Christian Church, 111 East Hilo Street, Isles of Capri

Cost: Women’s Conference, includes lunch, tickets $5. Concert free, all are welcome, a love offering will be taken.

Ticket purchase for Conference: 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday

Information: Church office 239-642-6233, or

© 2014 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 3

RayPray writes:

"Wauterlek is passionate about...poverty in Africa"

All as fruitless as Mrs Jellyby from Charles Dickens' 'Bleak House', an old lady whose entire attention is focused on saving Black Africa by missionary work, while oblivious to the wreck of her own large family & household and the squalor all around her.

"Mrs. Jellyby told us a great deal that was interesting about Borrioboola-Gha and the natives, and received so many letters that Richard, who sat by her, saw four envelopes in the gravy at once. Some of the letters were proceedings of ladies' committees or resolutions of ladies' meetings, which she read to us; others were applications from people excited in various ways about the cultivation of coffee, and natives.... She was full of business and undoubtedly was, as she had told us, devoted to the cause. Mrs. Jellyby, sitting in quite a nest of waste paper.... She also held a discussion with Mr. Quale, of which the subject seemed to be the brotherhood of humanity, and gave utterance to some beautiful sentiments."

MIOCENE1 writes:

"her mother’s first Christmas in heaven."
Ever wonder how anyone can be happy in heaven with the knowledge that a close friend didn't make it; and is screaming over a bed of hot coals for all eternity?

"Mary, the mother of Jesus, who with faith and humility bore the Son of God."
Outside of Christian Scripture, there is no evidence that this ever happened.
Ever wonder why no one else knew about the birth before there was no reason NOT to believe it?

That is why the story of the “Wise Men” had to be made-up; because no one can refute it. Certainly thousands of Sheppards didn’t show up to see the “son of god”?
That would have been a lie to big to prove.

Ever wonder why the Angel Gabriel would announce to Mary that she would give birth to the "son of god"; then this same Angel would reappear to Mohammed to announce that god cannot HAVE a son?
Ever wonder why one billion people do not believer that god has a son?
What do they know that you don’t?

Ever wonder WHY highly educated Jews believe that Jesus was a messianic hoax?

"Jesus loves us just the way we are.”
Then why bother spreading the Gospel. Just leave everyone alone.

"Bible study"
If god loves human life, and CREATED human life; then why didn't god design mankind such that MISCARRIAGE would not occur in the human species?

The occurrence of miscarriage in the human species renders each day millions of potential births to the unmarked grave of oblivion; or at the very least; mindless embryonic heaven.
Ever wonder about that?

If god created life on earth; including mankind and the flagella of one-celled organisms; then it follows that god must ALSO have created Yersinia pestis; the organism which killed at least one-third of the men, women, and children of Christian Europe in the 14th Century. Ever wonder about that?

Doesn’t it make more sense that Yersinia pestis may have EVOLVED into existence; rather then have been divinely created? And if so then perhaps man is ALSO a product of evolution rather then of divine origin?
Ever wonder about these things?

Do you people ever question ANYTHING?
I attended a number of Bible Classes in the South. Except for the physical maturity level of the so-called group leaders; I couldn’t tell the adults from the innocent children they were indoctrinating.

The good works done for the poor by church groups are commendable; but they are in no way of divine origin; this is a lie which gives them an excuse to spread the GOSPEL; which of course increases their power and influence wherever they go.

In helping the poor; the church functions no more then that of an international government welfare organization.

Helping the poor did not originate with either Jesus or the Bible. The Lenape Indians of New Jersey and people of the Far East were doing the same thing for a thousand years before Moses took his first breath.


MIOCENE1 writes:

Now let's take a look at the insane idea of WOMEN "spreading the christian gospel":

Here is some of the legacy that the Christian religion has passed down to us; and still influences man's attitudes toward women:

Keep in mind that Christian attitudes toward women did not improve much even after the Protestant Reformation; actually; not until as late as the 1970's; and changing attitudes were not the result of a loving god; but of secular reformers.

Saint Augustine of Hippo, Bishop of Hippo Regius, 354 - 430
"woman is defective and misbegotten, the production of woman comes from a defect."

St.Tertullia: a Father of the Christian Church; “virgins should be veiled”; Book 1, Chapter 1.
Turtullian goes on to say: "Women are responsible for the death of Christ, women are the devils gateway."
Tertullian also says: "that men should lord over women; that women are the first deserters of the divine, and live in a condemned state."
"In pain shall you bring forth children, woman, and you shall turn to your husband and he shall rule over you."

Clement of Alexandria (150?-215?): "Every woman should be filled with shame by the thought that she is a woman."
Pope Gregory I (540-604): "Woman is slow in understanding"

Reformer, founder of Scottish Presbyterianism] John Knox (1513-72): "Woman was made for only one reason, to serve and obey man."

Martin Luther: founder of Lutheran Protestantism:
"If [women] become tired or even die, that does not matter. Let them die in childbirth--that is why they are there."

Council Of Macon was held at Lyons. 43 Catholic bishops attended as well as 23 male representatives of other bishops. On the question of "Are women human?", 32 voted Yes, and 31 No

This is a small part of it. There is much more; and since Christianity and the Bible is such a large part of America; one can easily see how it influenced our attitudes toward woman.

Woman should be real careful about spreading the Christian gospel. For if they do TOO good a job at spreading the gospel; and achieve their goal of universal Christianity; their Christian MEN will use the attitudes of their forefathers, AND the Bible, to chain women right back to the kitchen and bedroom; and women wouldn't believe what would happen to them after that; -even while it was happening.

Behind all this "mush" about Jesus and the loving god; lie the beatings and hot pokers; the excuse for which is still there; in the Bible; waiting to rear it's ugly head of misogyny.


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