December 4, 2011 – Tegucigalpa, Honduras…Paul Haughton/IAD Staff
The Seventh-day Adventist Church in Honduras gathered a core group of 650 women from across the country and its Bay Islands to empower them as they continue to serve in churches and small groups in the Central American country. The three-day event was held at the Hotel Honduras Maya’s Convention Center in Tegucigalpa, on Nov. 17-19, 2011.
Ana Piñeda, Minister of Justice and Human Rights for Honduras, spoke to the hundreds of women on human rights and reviewed the laws which protect women in Honduras.
Similarly, Doris Gutierrez, municipal councilor and former congresswoman of Honduras, spoke on gender equality and the importance of women’s participation and leadership in all aspects of society.
“We wanted to elevate the self-esteem of women, train them and motivate them to use their gifts and talents for God’s service in fulfilling the mission of preaching the gospel,” said Del Howell, women’s ministries director for the church in Honduras and organizer of the event.
In a country challenged by poverty, unemployment and an increase in violence against women, the convention was important and necessary since women also face that reality, according to Howell.
“The church depends a lot on women’s ministries since women are active in preaching, teaching bible studies, and participating in evangelistic campaigns,
Dorcas society and more,” added Howell.
The convention was also an opportunity to certify some 165 women on a leadership certification program.
The convention included seminars on health, family, personal management, and allowed for networking among the hundreds of active women leaders.
Convention seminar speakers included Nicolle Brise and Esmeralda Guzman of the Southeastern Conference, United States; Felisa Rando from Argentina, Lorna Ponce and Mirna Pineda from Honduras, among others.
Leaders hope to organize another women’s convention in the future. In the meantime, attendees will share the knowledge they learned and continue to strengthen the growing church in Honduras, said Howell.
There are nearly 249,000 Seventh-day Adventists worshipping in 416 churches in Honduras.