WMU celebrates 20 years of Christian Women’s Job Corps

Woman's Missionary Union Executive Director and Treasurer Sandra Wisdom-Martin (left) and national WMU President Linda Cooper deliver the WMU report at the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting at the Phoenix Convention Center. The report highlighted the Christian Women's and Men's Job Corps. (BP Photo/Matt Jones)

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PHOENIX (BP)—Linda Cooper, president of national Woman’s Missionary Union, and Sandy Wisdom-Martin, WMU executive director, highlighted 20 years of ministry through Christian Women’s Job Corps during their report to the Southern Baptist Convention.

“Twenty years ago, WMU began a dream that has grown into a nationally recognized program for helping women in poverty become equipped for life and employment in a Christian context,” Cooper said June 14 in Phoenix.

CWJC “is about courageous women fighting for their families and their futures,” Cooper said. “It is about godly people sacrificing themselves to make a difference in someone’s life.”

Since CWJC started in 1997, 40,000 women have been touched through the program in nearly 200 sites, and 160,000 volunteers have served 200 million ministry hours, Cooper reported.

‘Came in broken and left whole’

Wisdom-Martin told of a woman named Flo who has served as a site coordinator of a CWJC site since 2005. Wisdom-Martin recounted that Flo said of CWJC: “Looking at the women who came in broken and left whole, I knew this was where I was meant to be. I fell in love with them and knew this was where I could make a difference.”

In 2004, WMU started Christian Men’s Job Corps, which operates in much the same way as its sister organization, in that each participant is paired with a mentor and is engaged in Bible study. In CWJC, women mentor women; in CMJC, men mentor men.

“It is our honor and privilege to be coworkers in the gospel with you, taking Jesus to the nations,” Cooper told messengers. “Our commitment is to help your church members learn about missions, pray for missions, support missions, do ministry, develop spiritually toward a missions lifestyle and support the work of your church and this denomination.”

Cooper, a member of Forest Park Baptist Church in Bowling Green, Ky., was re-elected to a third term as national WMU president at the organization’s missions celebration and annual meeting prior to the SBC annual meeting. Jackie Hardy of First Baptist Church in Social Circle, Ga., was elected as recording secretary.

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