Seminars

On arrival at the Scottish Women’s Bible Convention everyone will need to sign up for their seminar.  To avoid long queues, we’d encourage everyone to have decided beforehand what they’d like to sign up for.  Below are the seminar description with links to the post from the seminar leader sharing more about the topic.
Morning seminars
This seminar will look at how to endure when life and ministry sucks.
How to use the means God has given to keep us going in the Christian life.
The joy set before us – Agnes Brough
A good look forward to the New Creation – to encourage us to run the race to the end.
Afternoon seminars
How to read, understand and apply the Old Testament today.
Being godly online – Rachel Sloan
Help to think through what can be embraced and what should be rejected in digital technology.
Keeping going in evangelism – Katie Piggot and Karen Clark
Lots of help and motivation to keep sharing the good news of Christ with others.
Tickets for £10 can be bought from – tinyurl.com/swbc16tix

Seminar – Being godly online

On Monday’s we like to draw your attention to certain aspects of the Scottish Women’s Convention. For the next few weeks we’ll be telling you a bit more about the range of Seminars that are on offer.

my-passport-photoName – Rachel Sloan

Lives – Edinburgh

What is the title of your seminar at the Scottish Women’s Convention?

Being godly online

What is the seminar about?

This seminar will be looking at how we behave as Christians online.  We will look at the change the internet and social media platforms has made to our world and how we communicate with one another.  We will explore the pitfalls and benefits of an increasingly online world.  We will also investigate what the Bible has to say about our behaviour in this area.  

Who is the seminar for?

Anyone and everyone!  This session is not just for the ‘internet savvy’ as we all live in an increasing online world.  All of us are living lives which are being shaped by social media, some of us more than others.  But even if you don’t spend much time online you will have family members who will or you may be discipling someone who does.  Do you know what the issues they face through online media and do you know how to encourage them to be godly in their behaviour.

Why is this area important?

There has been a fundamental shift in the way we communicate and more and more of us are using digital technology.  As Christians we want to find a place where our use of digital technology is not just thoughtful and informed but it is informed by the Bible.  We don’t want to be Christians who completely reject digital technology any more than we want to be those who embrace them without thinking.  Instead we want to be disciplined in discerning to embrace what can be embraced and reject what can be rejected. 

Besides your seminar, what one thing about the Scottish Women’s Convention are you looking forward to and why?

I think I am most looking forward to seeing women from all over Scotland coming together to learn from God’s word.

Tickets – Early Bird

The countdown is on to grab your early bird tickets of a bargain £8.  On Monday 1st August ticket prices go up to £10.  Don’t miss out!  You have 4 days to get them!  That extra £2 will be a valuable contribution towards your lunch on the day or could be used towards a fabulous book from the bookstall.

Tickets can be purchased from Eventbrite here – tinyurl.com/swbc16tix

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Seminar – Running the race in tough times

On Monday’s we like to draw your attention to certain aspects of the Scottish Women’s Convention. For the next few weeks we’ll be telling you a bit more about the range of Seminars that are on offer.

Staff_Sharon_Dickens-300x400Name – Sharon Dickens

Lives – Niddrie, Edinburgh

What is the title of your seminar at the Scottish Women’s Convention?

The title that I have been given is Endurance – running the race when the going is tough.

What is the seminar about?

I need to give it more thought but probably ‘How to keep on keeping on when life and ministry sucks!’

Who is the seminar for?

Any women who isn’t a deluded Mary Poppins wanna be – “Practically perfect in everyway”

Why is this area important?

Life is full of struggles we can’t avoid them basically there are times when it out right sucks. We need to learn how to run the race with endurance, relying on God and in doing so grow in our faith. We also need to teach young women how to do this well. Far to often as older women we perpetuate this Mary Poppins myth that we are practically perfect in every way and in life nothing phases us or is going wrong, it’s the “I’m Fine” syndrome magnified. We all know it’s not true or helpful.

Thursday Spotlight

On Thursday’s  we want to give you an insight into the lives of some of the women involved in the Scottish Women’s Convention.  Some of these women are involved in full time ministry in the local Church, while others balance serving in the church with a secular job.

We sent them a questionnaire asking them to give us a taste of what they do, the challenges they face .

Staff_Sharon_Dickens-300x400Meet Sharon…Sharon lives in Niddrie, Edinburgh.

What area of ministry do you work in?

I’m Director of Operations and Women’s Ministry with 20schemes it’s a ministry of my church Niddrie Community Church.

How did you come to work in this particular area of ministry?

I have worked in the community primarily with families and people who have experienced homelessness for over 26 years. I was a member of Niddrie Community Church when Mez McConnell took over as our minister he asked me to be part of the Niddrie Pastoral Team initially as a community development worker. For over 8 years  I primarily  worked at establishing, training and co-ordinationing the women’s ministry.

When 20schemes was launched In Nov 2012 I was asked to take on the role of Director for Women’s ministry so that I could focus and develop the women’s ministry as well as and train the women workers. In April 2015 I also took on the responsibility to oversea the administration team UK and USA changing my job title to Director of Operations and Women’s Ministry so have a duel role.

Give one great challenge and one great joy of working in gospel ministry?

My great joy is that I get to mentor and disciple women who are in ministry as they mentor women, new believers, in the schemes. This is would also be, I would say, one of the greatest challenges as well as they struggle in their roles. I find it challenging the responsibility I have as an older women speaking into their lives. I feel the challenge for my own life even as I listen to my own words challenging them.

What one thing has the Lord been teaching you about yourself and himself in recent times?

  • Patience
  • Reliance on Him and not self reliance
  • Servant heartedness

Sharon will be leading a seminar at the convention.  Next week we will share more details of her seminar.

Seminar – Ordinary fuel for running the race

On Monday’s we like to draw your attention to certain aspects of the Scottish Women’s Convention. For the next few weeks we’ll be telling you a bit more about the range of Seminars that are on offer.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAName – Leonie Poole

Lives – Sileby – a large village situated in the Soar Valley between Leicester and Loughborough

What is the title of your seminar at the Scottish Women’s Convention?

The working title is “”Ordinary fuel for running the race” though I have been pondering “Ready Brek for the soul” – probably breach of copyright there! Perhaps “Porridge for persevering pilgrims?”

What is the seminar about?

The seminar is about how we keep going as Christians, how we keep running the race – what has God provided for us that we need to take hold of? We will discover how God’s word, His fatherly goodness to us and our communion with him in prayer, our brothers and sisters in Christ and our fellowship with them and giving and receiving in service and day dreaming about heaven will keep us running the race til the end.

Who is the seminar for?

For any one who has ever felt like giving up on the Christian life– whether due to failure, fatigue, faithlessness and anyone who is running well at the moment but is conscious that none of us are promised that following Jesus will be easy.

Why is this area important?

The longer I have been a follower of Jesus, the more I see that it is the ordinary life, the day to day keeping on that is often the silent killer of faith. Crisis of faith, tragedy – they make us more aware of the testing times, but in the day to day slog we become complacent. Yet this is where the battle is fought too. And sometimes we have been guilty of giving the pat answer “Just read your Bible, pray and go to church.” Which I endorse entirely – but I want to remind people why God has given us these gifts for our perseverance and why we should keep coming back to them with renewed joy and delight.

Besides your seminar, what one thing about the Scottish Women’s Convention are you looking forward to and why?

Being back in the homeland, catching up with dear friends who I don’t see often and being encouraged by their perseverance. I have been involved with the Midlands Women’s conventions over the last couple of years and I am keen to encourage this convention in Scotland, knowing how helpful it has been to women in the Midlands. And maybe having chance to enjoy a sneaky white pudding supper while I’m there!

Thursday Spotlight

On Thursday’s  we want to give you an insight into the lives of some of the women involved in the Scottish Women’s Convention.  Some of these women are involved in full time ministry in the local Church, while others balance serving in the church with a secular job.

We sent them a questionnaire asking them to give us a taste of what they do, the challenges they face .

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Meet Leonie…Leonie lives in Sileby – a large village situated in the Soar Valley between Leicester and Loughborough.

What area of ministry do you work in?

My official title is “schools and children’s work co-ordinator for the United Benefice of Sileby, Cossington and Seagrave”!  Which means I am responsible for teaching children about Jesus: on Sundays in XTB – our Sunday groups, during the week in school assemblies – we have 4 primary schools, in toddler groups, youth groups, after school club and summer holiday club and it’s termly follow up sessions on Sunday afternoons.

How did you come to work in this particular area of ministry?

I had the good news about Jesus taught to me from a young age at Sunday school, camp, after school club, youth group – I think that is where my passion for ministry with children really began!

As a student I worked with UCCF as one of the very first Relay workers, enjoyed working with students but felt ill-equipped so then did the Cornhill course in London – a year spent learning how to teach the Bible. I didn’t really have a plan, I just knew I wanted to teach the Bible – I was employed by a group of churches in rural Essex as an apprentice and did mainly youth and children’s work there for 3 years and I’m still doing it 18 years later, having ministered in churches in Burton on Trent, Aberdeen and now back in the Midlands.

Give one great challenge and one great joy of working in gospel ministry?

Sometimes I walk up the road to school thinking “I’m taking another assembly” when God kindly reminds me by his spirit that I am not just “taking an assembly” I am teaching the good news about Jesus to the lost . I stand in a long line of those who have sought to pass on the Good news, invited to take part in God’s great salvation plan. The challenge is always to keep the cross central, lifting your heart and mind to the spiritual realities as you live or sometimes slog, day to day on this earth. The great joy is that we do have good news of a great saviour to share and the reason I know is because he saved me and opened my eyes.

What one thing has the Lord been teaching you about yourself and himself in recent times?

I have been preparing Sunday school lessons from Luke’s gospel, about the people Jesus meets and interacts with and this has caused me to ponder about Jesus’ mission to the lost. Namely, that He has a heart for the lost as the very fabric of his being, it is his eternity’s work, love, labour, plan and delight to seek and save the lost. I am just a Johnny come lately to this game. I need to ask him in prayer to bring me up to speed with his plans and to humbly ask where I can serve. Which is a great comfort when I feel tired, don’t see much fruit, don’t have my faith in the right place, forget that God’s power is shown in weakness. He will never give up his mission til all his sheep are safely home. He could do this work without me but he chooses to use my bumbling efforts to bring about his plans. Who would ever have thought up such a plan?

Leonie will be leading a seminar at the convention.  Next week we will share more details of her seminar.

SWBC is for you!

Wondering whether you should go to the Scottish Women’s Bible Convention and why you should be excited about “another Christian conference”?  To help we asked different people why SWBC is for all women and is something we should all be excited by.  These people have either already booked their tickets, are involved in planning or are enthusiastically advertising at their churches.

unnamedThis week we asked Jon Gemmell, minister at Bruntsfield Evangelical in Edinburgh, why he is encouraging the women in his church to go and is volunteering his help behind the scenes.

Jon writes, “I am so excited about the inaugural Scottish Women’s Bible Convention. Women gathering around God’s Word and seeking the Lord together is always a thrilling and fruitful endeavour and one hopefully modelled and catalysed at this Convention. Women’s ministry is under-resourced across Scotland as a whole. I am praying that this convention can go some way to addressing this urgent need, spurring the church to take seriously its responsibility to serve, nurture, grow and unleash women to be confident, dynamic and dangerous for the gospel.”

Thursday Spotlight

On Thursday’s we want to give you an insight into the lives of some of the women involved in the Scottish Women’s Convention.  Some of these women are involved in full time ministry in the local Church, while others balance serving in the church with a secular job.

We sent them a questionnaire asking them to give us a taste of what they do, the challenges they face and what they are looking forward to about the Scottish Women’s Convention.

IMG_20160603_141326Meet Miriam…Miriam lives in Edinburgh with her husband.

What are you usually doing at 2pm on a Wednesday?

Sat at my desk, working. Not all that exciting, I’m afraid! I work as the Admin Co-ordinator in the Free Church of Scotland offices in Edinburgh; the administrative/financial hub of the work of the denomination. It’s a varied role that largely depends on what’s going on and what others need, but it gives me a fascinating insight into the inner workings of the church. It’s so easy to forget the everyday tasks that go on behind the scenes to allow gospel work to happen, but it’s actually really fulfilling (and challenging!) to know that everything you do, however mundane it may seem, is for the glory of God.

How did you become a Christian?

I’m very blessed in having no memory of a time when I wasn’t a Christian. My parents are deeply committed Christians and my dad is an Anglican vicar, so Jesus Christ and faith were integral to our everyday family life. I was always encouraged to develop a living faith of my own through prayer and Bible study, but there was never a question about God or the Bible that I couldn’t ask. My faith has matured over the years, but one of the key periods for me was studying Theology at university, when I specialised in the New Testament. There is something remarkable about being taught to translate the gospel from Greek to English that really makes you own the truth for yourself.

How do you serve within your church?

I’m part of St Columba’s Free Church in Edinburgh, where I serve as part of the church praise team. I’ve always loved music, and the Free Church tradition of singing unaccompanied psalms  has made me appreciate the psalms as worship far more than I ever had done before. I also write the church prayer diary and help my husband Dean, who is one of the church elders, with a house group.

What one thing has the Lord been teaching you about yourself and himself in recent times?

It took me a while to find my answer to this question, but I think it would have to be how to appreciate seasons of blessing. The last few years have been a real time of blessing and encouragement from the Lord, and this has helped me to mature and settle in my faith, and has taught me that God’s biblical promises of protection and benefit to His people are not just for eternity; they can be for now as well. This season of stability and peace has also enabled me to develop good habits in terms of supporting others and encouraging them in their walk with the Lord. In the end, we need to put our trust in God over and above all others things and people, and the blessings of recent times have given me the trust in Him to do that. Of course, I know that trials will still come, but I hope and pray that the lessons I have learnt in the good years will stay with me through any lean times in the future.

How did you get involved in planning the Scottish Women’s Bible Convention?

By being in the right place at the right time! We were having tea at the manse one night with our minister and his wife, Derek and Catriona Lamont, and Derek just asked me straight out to get involved. His words, so far as I can remember, were: ‘Miriam, I’ve had an email asking if there’s anyone in the congregation who would get involved in the steering group for a new Christian women’s conference. Are you keen?’ My answer was: ‘Absolutely!’

What thing about the Scottish Women’s Bible Convention are you looking forward to and why?

It may sound geeky, but my answer has to be robust biblical teaching for Christian women. All too often, material for Christian women is aimed at emotional stimulation, rather than mental sustenance and challenge. The Bible can be hard to grapple with, but the message of God was never meant to be an easy comfort. It is meant to sustain us through the challenges of the Christian life, and sanctify us for eternal life with the Son. I’m so glad, therefore, that the SWBC aim is to ‘equip women with the Word’, giving them the tools to delve deeper into God’s Word for themselves, and the confidence in the gospel to share their faith with others. Our faith and fruitfulness can only grow when we understand the Bible better.

On a very selfish note, I’m also hoping to be able to actually make it to the Convention! I’m due to give birth to my first child on the 7th October, the day before the Convention, so I’m hoping the baby will be a few days late so I can come along. We certainly don’t want any dramatics on the day, but I don’t really want to have to wait until next year to be there in person!

Our venue

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On Mondays we like to draw your attention to certain aspects of the Scottish Women’s Convention.  This week we are excited to introduce you to our venue.  This year the Scottish Women’s Bible Convention is happening at Charlotte Chapel on Shandwick Place, Edinburgh.  Check out their newly refurbished premises at this write up from the fiec – https://fiec.org.uk/news/article/a-2million-facelift.
This fabulous building is the venue for the Scottish Women’s Bible Convention on 8 October.  There are 600 seats and we would love to fill every one.  We’ve decided on a place for the 10ofthose bookstall, a room for nursing mums and we’re working out the best configuration for the coffee queues.  We’d love to see you there – at the Convention, not just in the queue!
Don’t forget to get your early bird tickets for £8 on Eventbrite.