The last two years have been marked with a pandemic, inflation, violence and racism. The mental and emotional impact of navigating these society ills have led to burnout for many. In the Maumee Watershed District, one church decided to gather women together to address the burnout felt by many women in the community. These are matters of the heart.
Under the urging of the Rev. Cecil J. F. Thompson, Kathy Moore Moore and Braden’s United Women in Faith’s chairperson Linda Hester coordinated a women’s weekend under the theme; Matters of the Heart. Partially supported through a grant from the Maumee Watershed District, Matters of the Heart was a first- time two-day celebration.
The weekend began with a conference on Saturday facilitated by Rev. Marquita Batchelor featuring licensed mental health professionals. The day was a time for women to gather in a safe space for honest conversation about mental health, support and fellowship. Topics included forgiveness, navigating stress and finding balance.
One attendee said, “I was able to share my personal experiences with “burn out” and emotional fatigue! I discussed how we take on more responsibility than we want to try to please others. As women, and as women of color, we often attempt to meet the needs of others but fail to meet our own personal needs! We can no longer neglect ourselves in trying to care for others, as we will eventually BURN OUT!”
On Sunday, Women’s Day, Rev. Batchelor preached a sermon grounded in the story of Lydia and what happened when God opened her heart.
“When our hearts are overwhelmed, we must stay in prayer, stay in church and worship. That is where a shift can take place," Batchelor said in her sermon.
Certified Lay Minister Kathy Moore said, “Pastor Thompson is leading us in making greater efforts to expand our reach into the community. I felt called to offer a women's conference focused on spiritual formation and practical application for mental health. Many of the attendees voiced excitement for a future conference.”
Matters of the Heart was a joint effort of Kathy Moore and Braden’s United Women in Faith Unit (formerly United Methodist Women). Click here to learn more.
Written by Amy Graham, Communications Specialist