I must have been blinded by the progress of women in my country. I assumed that because women’s rights have advanced in the United States and Canada, they were improving everywhere. I’m no longer so ignorant. I’ve learned how women around the world struggle as they fight to survive and thrive for the sake of their family and community.

For more than 20 years, Mennonite Women USA has sponsored the International Women’s Fund, providing scholarships to international women studying theology, Bible, and ministry. I used to think that we should open these scholarships to female scholars in other fields, but I’ve changed my mind. I’ve seen how higher education in church-related fields is preparing women to lead in their communities. When Women’s Fund scholars gain church leadership positions, they are empowered and earn respect. This allows them to speak truth to powers that continue to treat women as second-class citizens.

Patience is a Ugandan woman in her second year of studies at the University of Uganda. As with many of our scholarship recipients, her post-secondary education would have been impossible without these funds. Her education is equipping her to improve the lives of many women.

Patience, the women whose lives she will touch, and the body of Christ are such worthwhile investments! As you spend money on family and friends this holiday season, consider investing in women like Patience. Join us as we support women in leadership throughout the global church. Today—this Giving Tuesday—donate to the International Women’s Fund.

It’s not hard, and it’s worth it. Don’t pass up this opportunity to make a real difference. Give now.

With appreciation, Cyneatha

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