The NEWIM Board and leaders met during 2017 and formulated our dreams for the next three years in four ministry areas: Small Group Gatherings, Contemplative Retreats, Creating Safe Connections for Women in Ministry, and Enhancing our Exposure/Marketing.
Small Group Gatherings
Our dream is that by 2020, women are drawing together, forming small groupings of 7 or 8, finding time to meet over coffee or dinner, and sharing their personal stories of ministry. As a result women find strength and encouragement to take on the challenges they experience both personally and in ministry, leading to greater enthusiasm and joy in service. Women feel empowered by the sharing of resources, ideas and prayer to keep their ministry focused on what is most important: being known and loved by Jesus and passing that on to others. NEWIM teams will be invited to come, lead and train women to create supportive environments in diverse cities through retreats and workshops spurring new growth and developing mature leaders.
NEWIM will be known in Christian circles as the organization that offers unique contemplative retreats for women of all Christian denominations and in all stages of their walk with Christ. These retreats will be available throughout the year in multiple locations and expanded venues. They will include the 3 Day-Springs Retreat, a two day Silent Retreat, a one day retreat embracing silence and reflection and a half-day retreat for women with limited schedules and resources. NEWIM will be offering many opportunities for women who need time away from their busy lives to reconnect with Jesus and once again hear His voice.
Most of NEWIM's retreats give women time, space, and resources to connect with Jesus in solitude, while also offering some opportunities for guidance in the Christian spiritual disciplines. Some retreats may have a unique focus, such as connecting and encouraging “women in ministry,” healing, writing, or acting as a spring board to advance them into leadership. Women will find opportunities at NEWIM’s retreats to be with like-minded women in similar roles or with similar struggles so they feel safe, encouraged, and affirmed. Relationships begun at contemplative retreats continue on after the retreat as leaders “check-in” (in-person or on-line) to offer encouragement, and thus mentoring is organically happening. Other churches or organizations looking to lead contemplative retreats will seek out guidance from NEWIM and our team leaders will help mentor them in establishing their own retreats.
Safe Connections for Women in Ministry
Newim aspires to be an organization that is a “safe place” for women in ministry. All of our events/retreats are intentional about giving women serving as womens ministries directors, or who are married to pastors, the opportunity to be with other women serving in a similar ministry role in small groups. We know what the research confirms, serving in ministry can be isolating and very challenging. Getting together with others who understand can be a lifeline.
Also, women who are going through a common challenge (for example, those who are grieving, or whose husband has struggles with sexual integrity) will have the opportunity to get to know other women in similar situations. Opportunities for SAFE CONNECTIONS are created during our contemplative retreats, and when women gather in small affinity groups for prayer and to work together on meaningful projects. NEWIM leadership seeks to create opportunities where women feel safe because the person leading, and those attending, have walked in her shoes.
Enhancing NEWIM's exposure
As an organization, we are dedicated to helping women know God better. How can we help them do this if they don’t know about us? The best advertising is through word of mouth and referrals, so we rely heavily on our leaders and teams to spread the word to their friends, colleagues and congregations. We also recognize the influence of social media and therefore seek to have a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest and any other forms of social media that may arise in the future. We also maintain a presence through our website, which features articles, resources and information about our retreats and other events. Our goal is to become known to as many individuals as possible, so that women will hear about NEWIM, and be able to take advantage of our ministry.