Every Friday Baptist Women in Ministry introduces an amazing woman minister. Today we are pleased to introduce you to Missy Ward Angalla.
Missy, tell us about your ministry?
I serve as Cooperative Baptist Fellowship partner-funded field personnel in Kampala, Uganda. I minister among refugee women, girls, and families, who have been traumatized, abused, trafficked and/or are vulnerable to exploitation. The ministry program includes a shelter recovery program for young women affected by severe trauma and exploitation, a vocational training program for women at risk, and a social work program for refugee women, girls and crisis.
What experiences helped you discern this call to ministry?
I felt the call to serve in missions soon after I became a Christian during my high school years. Having been one of the “least of these” within my community, I wanted to share the hope, love, and grace of Christ with others who were hurting, marginalized, and abused. God refined this calling in college as I became aware of the appalling rates of violence against women and treatment of refugee women and girls in our world. I felt called to start the FIRST recovery program for refugee women and girls who have been through violence in a country where there was not yet a program. While in college and seminary, I had the chance to minister in California among Afghanistan refugee women and then as a Student.Go intern with East African refugees in Uganda. Not only did these experiences affirm and deepen my sense of calling, they also allowed me the invaluable opportunity to learn alongside of incredible CBF field personnel who mentored me and welcomed me to minister alongside of them.
While serving in Uganda in the fall of 2010 as an intern, I felt God calling me back full-time work there to start the first holistic shelter and recovery ministry for refugee women and girls (the first of its kind in Kampala), alongside of the CBF field personnel and organization that I interned with through Student.go.
Who has inspired you in your ministry journey?
One of the most precious gifts from God is an incredible community of people who have supported, encouraged, prayed for, and walked with me over the last ten years as I have made this journey in ministry. There are SO many who have inspired me in various ways and at different times. Jane Hull is a woman who has had one of the largest impacts on my life. I met Jane while in seminary at McAfee School of Theology in Atlanta, Georgia. Jane is one of the most gifted ministers that I have ever met. While at McAfee, she served as mom/chaplain/friend to countless students. She naturally exudes God’s love, grace, and compassion in profound and powerful ways. Having lost my mom when I was very young, Jane’s friendship was an incredible gift in my life. She was a mom to me and there for me as I processed and went through some of the most painful and joyous experiences. Jane was one of the first female ministers that I had a close relationship and friendship with. Learning more about her and her life opened my eyes to what it meant to minister and serve. The previous baggage and confusion that I had about women in ministry quickly subsided as I witnessed and had the privilege of being apart of God’s incredible work through Jane’s life.
What advice would you give to a teenage girl who is sensing a call to ministry?
Continue to STEP FORWARD in faith and confidence knowing that you are ABLE through the God who is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine!
When I was in college, I dreamed of starting this new ministry in Africa for refugee women. I imagined that it would happen twenty years from then, certainly not when I was in my twenties! God is so amazing and faithful. God does not call us to live life on the sidelines, but in the trenches. God chooses to allow us to be the hands and feet of Christ in a world that is deeply hurting. As Addie Davis once said ” the world is waiting for YOU!” Our God is waiting to use you to share hope, love and grace with God’s precious children throughout the world.
To learn more about Missy’s work in Uganda, visit missyinuganda.com.