An Opportunity to Develop

Develop WMU online training

Author John Maxwell wrote, “Everything rises and falls on leadership.” I believe this is so true. In recent months, I have written From Missionary Ridge articles about 2015 being a year to focus on equipping missions leaders in the church. Through events in the Midwest and western regions and during the WMU Missions Celebration and Annual Meeting this past June in Ohio, much attention was given through conferences to help missions leaders feel confident in their role of leading small groups of children, youth, or adults. The success of any program or event rises and falls on the quality of leadership that guides the effort. WMU has been blessed throughout our history with wonderful, enthusiastic leaders who make missions and missionaries come alive in the hearts and minds of those they lead, thus keeping the missions passion alive from generation to generation.

On July 1, we launched another approach for equipping missions leaders called Develop: WMU Leadership Training. We live in a day when many of our leaders are working moms juggling many responsibilities. They are stretched beyond the time they have to give to family, church, community, and beyond, but they are committed to the mission of God as they share Christ with those they meet. They have a genuine desire to grow in their faith and knowledge about current missions efforts while helping lead their church to greater missions commitment. But going to training events away from home or even giving one day to a local training seminar is often not possible because of their schedules. WMU is sensitive to this season in life and is committed to finding new ways to help equip leaders in a way that works for them.

Develop is designed to equip its participants for leading specific WMU organizations while developing general leadership skills. The first six courses include basics on leading Mission Friends, Girls in Action, Acteens, Women on Mission, and churchwide WMU and getting to know CWJC/CMJC. This fall we will complete other age-level courses and offer them through Develop as well. Each course is self-paced, online, and on-demand, providing training in any location with Internet access at a time convenient for each participant. Develop participants can register, begin course work on the same day, and have 30 days including the registration day to complete each course.

Develop courses, in addition to specialized courses coming in 2016, are available on, our online training site. These courses will appeal to anyone desiring to grow in his or her leadership ability and skills in a Christian context. Upcoming topics will include the spiritual life of a leader and the biblical basis of missions, just to name a few. We look forward to the coming months as each level of courses is completed and hearing feedback from those of you who take a course.

Why are we giving so much effort to online training? Because we believe the better equipped we are to lead, the greater the results of our involvement in the mission of God. Yes, everything does rise and fall on leadership, especially when the leader is committed to following Christ and being the best leader possible. We hope you will join us in our quest to develop quality missions leaders for the future. Visit to learn more.

Wanda S. Lee is executive director of national WMU.

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