American Baptist Churches of Pennsylvania and Delaware

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Nominations for Shine the Light Award


Nominations are being accepted now for the 2019 Shine the Light Award. The Shine the Light Award, established by American Baptist Women’s Ministries, ABCUSA, serves to recognize a woman or a women’s ministry group that serves as outstanding light-bearers for Christ. The award highlights a specific ministry project or projects that best demonstrate how the individual or group receiving the award have spread the light of Christ through their congregation, their community, or the world.

Nancy Byleen, a member of First Baptist Church in West Allis, Wisconsin, was the recipient of the 2018 Shine the Light Award in recognition of her dedication to serving Chin refugees who arrived in the area in the late 2000’s. When Chin refugees were first relocated to the Milwaukee area from the war in Myanmar, Byleen and her husband led the efforts of their church congregation to assist with the resettlement, including a Sunday School for the families’ children, accompanying individuals to their doctors’ appointments and interviews, leading a collection of donated household and food items, and many other efforts. Byleen was presented with the Shine the Light Award at the 2018 national conference for women and girls, “FEEL,” held at Judson University in Elgin, Illinois, July 19-22.

“The Shine Light Award is a wonderful opportunity to lift up a woman, young adult woman or girl, or a women’s or girls’ ministry, that uses women’s and girls’ God-given gifts and skills to share the love, hope, and joy of our Savior, Jesus Christ. In many ways it is like holding up a mirror of the organization as the Shine the Light Award recipient reflects the mission and core values of American Baptist Women’s Ministries, and is a person who we acknowledge as a role model for our sisterhood,” says Rev. Gina Jacobs-Strain, executive director of American Baptist Women’s Ministries.

The deadline for nominations for the 2019 Shine the Light Award is January 31st, 2019. For a list of past recipients, as well as more information, criteria, and to submit a nomination, visit the AB Women’s Ministries website at or contact the AB Women’s Ministries office at (610) 768-2288 or