IRVINE, CA (June 29, 2012) – Advocates for Covenant Clergy Women presented three awards during a special reception as part of the 127th Annual Meeting of the Evangelical Covenant Church.
Rebekah Strobel was awarded the Victoria Welter Scholarship. She is finishing her internship at Winnetka Covenant Church in Wilmette, Illinois, where she has ministered to junior and senior high students. One of the people who nominated her wrote, “She has a gentleness about her, yet a strong command and connection when she teaches that allows the truth of the gospel to reach our youth.” She will graduate from North Park Theological Seminary in May 2013 with a Master of Divinity degree.
The award is named to honor Welter, the first woman graduate of North Park Theological Seminary in 1901. At the time of her graduation, classmates voted against including her in the class photograph.
Nicole Bullock, lead pastor of Blue Oaks Covenant Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, was honored with the Phoebe Church Planters’ Grant. She will contribute the $1,000 for the SHINE Women’s Fellowship, which provides biblical guidance and support to struggling single mothers. The fellowship also provides a network of resources.
The award is named in honor of Phoebe, who is mentioned in Romans 16 as the individual sent by the Apostle Paul to deliver his letter to the church in Rome.
Debbie Blue, executive minister of the Department of Compassion, Mercy, and Justice, was presented the Evelyn M.R. Johnson Leadership Award. Blue earned a Master of Christian Education degree from North Park Theological Seminary in 1996 and began serving in the denomination as the associate director of consulting and training, later as director of adult ministries. She also has a certificate in spiritual direction from the seminary. She is a member of Community Covenant Church in Calumet, Illinois. The person who nominated her wrote, “Debbie has led the denomination prayerfully and theologically on what it means to talk about justice.”
The award recognizes a female minister in the Covenant who has demonstrated excellence in ministry based on character, ministerial identity, contribution to the Covenant and faithfulness to call.
“We are excited to share the ministries of these gifted women with a wider audience so we can all celebrate with them this recognition by their colleagues in ministry,” said Catherine Gilliard, ACCW president.
The organization – previously known as the Association for Covenant Clergy Women – changed its name earlier this year. The name change clarifies that all credentialed clergy – male and female – can become partners, says Gilliard.
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