Presbyterian Women is an organisation within the Presbyterian Church in Ireland that enables, encourages and equips women to become disciples of Christ.
Who We Are
Most congregations in PCI have a Presbyterian Women’s group. These groups are envisaged as fellowships in which women of all ages and stages of life are able to come together to grow in their faith through bible study, prayer, teaching and through growing in community together.
Looking forward – side by side: A letter to PW Groups from the PW Panel
The full 2021 conference is now available to view online or to download.
You can view Sophie De Witt's talks separetly on the PW Conference Recordings page.
An update on the PW Special Projects can be viewed by clicking here.
Pressing on Together – Side by side
Saturday 27 February, 10.30am–11.45 am
This event was for anyone who is involved in leading a women's ministry/PW group or serving on the committee.
This webinar hopes to come alongside those involved in leading Presbyterian Women’s groups, encouraging them to press on as they live for Jesus, serving him in whatever ways they find possible, still being His disciples and making disciples.
To view a recording of the seminar click here.
Refined Women's Ministry
Pauline Kennedy, PCI’s Women’s Ministry and PW Development Officer, reflects on the newness God’s refining is bringing to ministry among women across the church. See here...
Side by side from a distance
As we continue to experience everyday reality and church life very differently from all we are used to, we look to God to give us necessary grace and peace for this season. More than ever we need to live out the PW theme of side by side, albeit from the social distance required to maintain public health. This creates all sorts of new challenges for PW groups and as an organisation. For now, our focus is on being side by side in prayer and care for one another and in living for Jesus as we love God with heart, soul, mind and strength and our neighbour as ourselves.
Your PW group in 2020/21
The ongoing restrictions on meeting together due to the coronavirus pandemic are likely to continue to interrupt the normal scheduling of meetings during 2020/21. This will make planning ahead difficult and different in every situation. Your group may or may not be planning to meet, but if it is it will be helpful to do so paying careful attention to the following.
1. First and foremost, no organisation within a congregation can simply decide to resume meetings. The formal guidance issued to every congregation by the General Council, operating with the delegated authority of the General Assembly states: “The Kirk Session should decide when organisations and activities resume and approve the dates for restarting any activity.”
Your Kirk Session therefore has the responsibility to work through the detailed guidance issued by PCI, make a series of significant decisions and then oversee all necessary preparations. Your PW group meetings will therefore not be able to recommence until your Kirk Session indicates to you that this is permitted.
The general guidance for resuming activities issued by PCI can be found here.
2. Expect meetings, if and when they do resume, to involve ongoing social distancing, wearing of face coverings and increased cleaning before and/or after you meet. Inviting guest speakers may also be more difficult. Some of your normal activities will also not be possible with church kitchens out of bounds, hymnbooks and Bibles unable to be distributed and then collected, or offerings lifted by passing around a basket.
PCI have issued specific guidelines and ideas for planning adult ministry activities in congregations. In thinking about your PW programme or planning any gathering, be sure to consult the advice which can be found here.
3. Not all of your group may feel able to attend meetings due to underlying health conditions or other pastoral issues. Do try to find ways to support them in these days when they may feel especially isolated.
4. It may be helpful to plan to meet less regularly than normal during 2020/21.
5. It may be helpful to think in terms of a blended programme of physical gatherings and other ways of keeping contact. In between meetings it may be possible to distribute some material on social media, meet by Zoom to pray, or to visit some of your group while continuing to observe regulations about social distancing and visiting indoors.
6. Plan with flexibility. As things change be ready to adapt, either increasing your programme or putting elements on hold if required.
7. Please feel free of the pressure of trying to operate your group as normal in this period or not to meet at all. These are unprecedented times calling for careful attention to health and safety and where possible different approaches.
What We Do
Presbyterian Women supports the development of ministry among women in PCI through the creation of group resources, running women’s conferences and facilitating training events.
We support the work of the Council of Mission in Ireland by helping to fund deaconess training and the outreach of South Belfast Friendship House into Sandy Row. We also support the Council for Global Mission as they send out and fund global mission workers in countries across the globe. Each year, Presbyterian Women also select special projects, both at home and overseas, through donations made to our Mission Fund.
What We Create
Presbyterian Women is involved in the creation and distribution of a range of resources and materials designed for personal use, and for use within women’s ministry contexts; each year, these are based on our annual theme, which for 2019-20 is Restore. Click on the links below to find out more about some of these resources:
Meet The Team
Presbyterian Women currently employ two members of staff, and are supported by a dedicated team of volunteers, including Office Bearers.
Pauline Kennedy - Women's Ministry and PW Development Officer
I have been involved in women’s ministry at home and overseas for many years, and I have a passionate, heartfelt vision from God for all women across our land and beyond to know that they are valued and that their identity in Christ has real purpose. As Women’s Ministry and PW Development Officer it is my responsibility to support the ministry of Presbyterian Women, as well as assisting in the development of strategy and coordination of women’s ministry in general.
Telephone: PW Office +44 (0)28 9041 7256
Rose McCullagh - Senior Administrative Assistant
In a nutshell, I am thoughtful, caring, faithful, fun-loving, sensitive, devoted, mischievous, compassionate, patient, relational and thorough. As Senior Administrative Assistant I am responsible for finance related duties, deputation arrangements and secretarial and administrative duties.
2020-22 Office Bearers
Heather Clements – PW President
Heather has had a lifelong interest in global mission, and has been a member of the Council for Global Mission for some years. She is the Convener of the Global Mission Partnership Panel and is heavily involved with projects in a partnership church in Malawi. Heather enjoys regular visits to that country, calling it her second home. Her vision is that women of all ages will find fellowship and grow in faith as they meet together in Presbyterian Women.
Esther Parker – Home Vice-President
Being involved in several Presbyterian Women’s groups throughout ministry alongside her husband, Bill, has provided Esther a broad experience to draw on. Her hope for PW groups is that they would increasingly be places where generations of women learn together to live as disciples of Jesus, supporting and encouraging one another in our day to day lives and serving the Lord together.
Ann Wilson – Overseas Vice-President
Ann became the new Overseas Vice-President in May 2020, having been a member of PW Panel for a number of years. Ann’s husband, Alan, has recently retired from ministry and they have since moved from Limavady to Saintfield, Co Down.