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Report of EBWU Conference in Özdere, Turkey

Report by Margaret Brown

On the warm, sunny shore of Özdere twenty-eight women from various parts of Europe had the privilege of coming together from 12-15th November 2015. Although small in number, we were large in love, fellowship and blessing. The conference was arranged primarily to bring a flavour of what was experienced by the Committee in Johannesburg at the BWAWD Leadership Conference in July, and took the same theme of 'Arise, Shine'.

Participants of the ConferenceParticipants of the Conference

Ertan Cevik, pastor of the Baptist Church in Izmir, attended on the first evening with some young people from the church who led us in our opening worship and gave testimony. Ertan also brought greetings and shared about the situation in Turkey.

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This was followed by the Roll Call of the countries present, each representative placed their lit candle on a ray of the sun laid out on the floor, so that when all the candles were lit and the rays shining there was light in the darkness, finishing with the song ‘Shine, Jesus, shine’. 

Ksenija Magda, BWA Women's Department presidentKsenija Magda, BWA Women's Department president

The main speaker was the newly appointed President of the Women’s Department, Dr Ksenija Magda, from Croatia. It was an honour to have her with us and to listen and learn from what she shared with us from the Word of God. Her topics were ‘Arise! Because YOU CAN!’ and ‘Shine! The World eagerly awaits your light.’ She had us digging into God’s Word and we had much food for thought. May the Lord enable us to put into practice in our lives the important lessons He taught us.

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Reports of the work of EBWU and of the conference in Johannesburg were given. Also included was a Fair/Mission where small items from the countries were on display and/or for sale. A very important part of the conference was an acted out history of the Baptist Women’s Day of Prayer.

Sisters are re-acting the short play presented first at South Africa conference (July 2015) about the history of Baptist Women’s Day of PrayerSisters are re-acting the short play presented first at South Africa conference (July 2015) about the history of Baptist Women’s Day of Prayer

Time was also given for testimonies to be shared which was quite a moving experience as we heard of the hardships some of our sisters are going through. There were times of praise and worship and prayer.

Bible study groupsBible study groups 

On the last evening we had a meditation focussing on ‘pearls’ and how precious we are, like pearls, valued, treasured by God, prior to the celebration of the Lord’s Supper following which was a prayer blessing when each woman received a small bottle containing a few drops of water from the Jordan River.

Conference participants in front of the Library of EphesusConference participants in front of the Library of Ephesus 

EBWU committee in EphesusEBWU committee in Ephesus

During our time at the conference we were able to visit the ruins of the ancient city of Ephesus. This was well worth the visit, and gave an insight to what life must have been like for the people who lived there and of their customs. All too soon it was over and goodbyes were said with the promise to keep in touch, and to pray for one another. We learned so much from the Lord. We were inspired, challenged and encouraged to persevere in our Christian walk, to ‘Arise and Shine’.

 

For more pictures about the Conference you may visit also the following link:
picasaweb.google.com/wiesdijkstra/TurkeyEBWU

 

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