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Faith & Family: Women of Worship conference this weekend

NATCHEZ — The Seventh Annual Women of Worship Miss-Lou Bible Study Conference begins at 3 p.m. today with a theme of “Lord Give Me a Heart for You.”

“It is just a great time for women to come together,” said Carolyn Ridley, president of Women of Worship. “Our thoughts through this conference are to cross-generational lines, racial lines, denominational lines and just keep the word of God at the center.”

Women of Worship was organized by a group of women from different church backgrounds and the annual Bible study conference is held at different churches each year.

“We did several years at Parkway Baptist Church,” Ridley said. “We did a couple of years at First Baptist Church. Last year we were at Vidalia Baptist and this year we are really excited, this is the first time we’ve done it at an African American Church. We are at Pilgrim Baptist Church (7 Pilgrim Boulevard, Natchez) this year.”

Ridley said the event is a Bible study conference but also is a time of “fellowship, praise and worship with women from all walks of life, so it is just a great weekend and we would love women to join us.”

This year’s guest speaker is Chris Adams, author, speaker, writer and women’s ministry consultant who is retired from LifeWay Christian Resources of Nashville, Tennessee, after 22 years as senior lead women’s ministry specialist.

Adams has compiled three women’s leadership books: “Women Reaching Women: Beginning and Building a Growing Women’s Ministry,” “Transformed Lives: Taking Women’s Ministry to the Next Level,” and “Women Reaching Women in Crisis.”

Ridley said everyone is welcome to attend the two-day event but the deadline for registering for the supper and luncheon passed at the end of February.

So people who show up Friday and Saturday without having preregistered will not be able to eat.

Men, too, are welcome to attend.

“We do have a few guys who like to sit in the back,” Ridley said. “Men are welcome if they want to come and sit and hear that would be fine.”

The worship leader for the conference is Kenneth Brandon of Mobile, Alabama, and the theme, “Lord Give me a Heart for You,” Ridley said, is taken from Kay Arthur, who is known for her inductive Bible study method.

Friday’s schedule: 3 p.m. Doors open, registration; 4 p.m. early bird session “How to Study Your Bible”; 5 to 6:30 p.m. supper; 7 p.m. Session I.

Saturday’s schedule: 7:30 a.m. Doors open/registration; 8 a.m. early bird session “Lord Give Me a Heart to Exercise”; 9 a.m. Session II.