Monday, March 10, 2008

Phoebe Orombi featured speaker at Western Women’s Retreat

From the Anglican Communion Network [boldface mine]:

“The First Lady of the Anglican Church in Uganda,” Phoebe Orombi, wife of Archbishop Henry Luke Orombi, primate of the Anglican Church in Uganda, is slated to be the keynote speaker at The Regional Anglican Women’s Council (RAWC) retreat April 11–13 in Costa Mesa, California. Other speakers include the Rev. Helen Oneka, a leader of Uganda’s “Women of Purpose” education ministry, and Jennifer Leber of Virginia, a missionary who with her husband has worked in Uganda for the past ten years.

The event is expected to draw about 150 Anglican women from a region stretching from northern Los Angeles County southward to the Mexican border and east to parts of Arizona. It will be held April 11, 12 and 13 at the Ayres Hotel & Suites in Costa Mesa.

RAWC was organized in February, 2007, by a group of Southern California women within the new Anglican realignment in North America. The organizers felt a need to coalesce in relationship with other Anglican women in their region to discern what God is calling them to do in their communities and to help develop a new understanding of themselves as a cluster in the emerging Anglican formation. The theme of the weekend, “Set Free Indeed … For God’s Purpose,” continues this path of discernment resulting from recent identification with new Anglican relationships.

The Rev. Kathleen Adams, who works with the Network’s Western Convocation, is one of RAWC’s organizers. She noted that the group held several successful mini-retreats in different parts of the region, termed “strength training for women,” as a prelude to the April gathering.

Mrs. Orombi, referred to as “Mama Phoebe” in her home country, is active in Uganda in encouraging women to improve themselves. Her dynamism as an inspirationally spiritual teacher is highly regarded. Weekend organizers note that Mama Phoebe “reminds us that God’s desire is to have a relationship with us” and that “we are to further His kingdom by reflecting God’s heart of love in a hurting world through the good work He began in us.”

Of the world’s estimated 77 million Anglicans, nearly ten million live in Uganda, more than one in every seven who claim the religious affiliation. Mrs. Orombi works closely with her husband in his ministry in this challenging African setting. Among Mama Phoebe’s teachings for the weekend will be her talks to the group on “Set free for love,” “Set free to serve,” and, her final challenging address, “Set free to walk in deeper waters.” Her companions from Uganda, the Rev. Helen Oneka and missionary Jennifer Leber, will speak on being “Set free from sin,” and “Set free to receive the Holy Spirit.”

In addition to the talks, the program offers work shops, ministry teams, liturgical services, counseling and confessions as well as music and free time. Rev. Adams noted that the weekend is a start in what organizers anticipate will be a growing fellowship among Anglican women in the Western Region, similar to that already established and strengthening among the men.

For Retreat information, contact Stephanie Akens-Gunn at 818/249–3517 before March 9th, or download the brochure [PDF].

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