The Words of the Daugherty Family
The annual conference is an experience of joyful reunion for delegates who have shared so many unforgettable moments on the frontline of the Providence, as well as a chance to make new friends and put faces to the voices we pray with over the course of the year. It is a chance to share our struggles and victories and help each other along our paths. It is a time of renewal and inspiration. It is moving to hear the repeated and sincere expressions of gratitude to our True Parents for creating such a movement where Christians can meet each other beyond their denominations, races, and geographical limitations and truly experience just being sisters in Christ.
The genuine and heartfelt love our minister friends have for our True Parents is palpable. It is also a wonderful chance for our Unificationist sisters to expand their horizons and realize that it is not necessary to be an Unificationist member to love and value True Parents. It is clear that our WIM members have not in any way changed their love and devotion for Jesus. In their hearts there is no competition between True Parents and Jesus. Some Unificationists miss the Christian experience and can be greatly benefited in their spiritual lives by inheriting this from our minister brothers and sisters. It was, after all, Jesus who bequeathed his mission to True Father. Just as surely as Jesus came on the foundation of the Prophets, the Unificationist movement stands squarely on the foundation of the New Testament. Both the ministers and the Unificationists are enriched by the ongoing engagement.
After a tremendously successful conference in Norfolk, Virginia, last year, it was decided by Women In Ministry (WIM) that this year’s conference would take place in Atlanta under the theme “Victorious Women Living the Dream, One Family under God.”
Delegates began arriving on the afternoon of November 20 from all across the nation and from as far away as Hawaii. Not only did our Hawaiian sisters who attended last year’s conference return, but Sister Carol Keanaaina brought her twin sons, who provided beautiful Hawaiian gospel music to inspire and uplift us. They had fund-raised all year to finance this trip.
Many of the delegates were ministers and pastor’s wives who have been working with ACLC for years. Some were attending for the first time. There were also a number of Unificationists who are new to WIM. National ACLC officers in attendance with their wives included Bishop Ki Hoon Kim, Dr. Michael Jenkins, and Bishop Jesse Edwards. Some of the Atlanta delegates were joined by their husbands for some of the events, and Rev. Levy Daugherty joined us at the King Center.
On the evening of November 20, Dr. Gloria Wright of Atlanta shared her testimony of working with Dr. King as a young person. On Friday morning, November 21, the first presentation was the video of the life of Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, “ The way of True Love,” and the words of Dr. Moon shared by Mrs. Alexa Ward, President of the Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP) USA. It was well received by all women.
Rev. Sennie Johnson preached on the topic of “Identity Theft,” which was a hard-hitting explanation of the human Fall. In addition to inspired preaching and teaching, we enjoyed a delightful presentation by Sister Tanya Edwards on how to hold one-day events in our local areas. Many ideas were demonstrated to spark our imaginations. An excellent presentation was given by Elizabeth Byrne on abstinence education. Debbie Gullery gave a power-point lecture on marriage and family, and Rev. Carla Jackson presented the topic, “Blessing of Marriage,” in which she expressed how important it is to receive the Blessing ceremony in order for our marriage to be sacred and protected. It was so powerful and so convincing.
One of the most popular events was the Women’s Café, a rotating discussion. There were six topics of interest to be discussed, and participants were free to visit six various tables to participate in the discussions that interested them. Every 15 minutes the signal was given to change tables. Most were reluctant to move on, and many just continued to carry on the discussion they were involved in. Several asked that next year more time be allotted for the Café. Former Georgia State Sen. Steen Miles gave a moving and inspirational talk on November 22 at the final resting place of Dr. and Mrs. Martin Luther King as floral wreaths were laid at the crypt. “On November 4, in this country, change came in a man called Barak Obama. As we stand on this hallowed ground, it begs the question of his book: Where do we go from here?” said Senator Miles.