Every Friday, Baptist Women in Ministry introduces a fabulous minister, and today we are pleased to introduce Donna Battle. Donna IS what a minister looks like.
Donna, tell us about your ministry journey and the places and ways you have served and are serving.
My ministry journey has been filled to the brim with both joy and sorrow, grief and peace. I have gone back and forth between college chaplaincy and traditional pastorate positions in local churches. I have served black and brown communities as well as mostly white communities and mixed race/ethnic communities. Additionally, I preach, offer pastoral care, and facilitate training/workshop opportunities. Much of my work is theologically-based and centers around justice, equity, and healing, particularly as it relates to the intersection of race and gender. I currently serve full-time as the chaplain at Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina. I am also a mother of three and a loving partner to my spouse.
What have been your greatest sources of joy in ministry?
The sources of joy in my life are relationships and preaching; the use of gifts and knowledge as a conduit and invitation to healing and freedom; and the moments of renewed hope after cyclical seasons of despair.
What have been the greatest challenges you have encountered in ministry?
A great challenge for me has been navigating a male-dominated vocation as a black woman and dealing with the many ongoing cycles of grief as a result of this reality. Also challenging has been my being steeped in the ugly pain and hurt of others and the world.
What advice would you give to a young college student who is discerning a call to ministry?
Always lead with Love. Love for God. Love for self. Love for others. Be Free. Be courageous and pray without ceasing. Don’t be afraid to face the truth and God will help you come to yourself.