Women, wine and waiata in the Waikato
If you search for www.absolutely! on the Internet, you will be disappointed with a ‘page cannot be displayed’ notice. Call into a caf? in a rural Waikato town sometime, however, and you may well find a group of women enjoying lunch together.
Follow them outside, and along the road to a nearby church, and you could observe them busily planning a professional development day or a ministry retreat. Conversations continue through email.
Back home, in towns and cities across the Waikato-Bay of Plenty, these women are actively engaged in a wide variety of paid and unpaid, full-time and part-time ministries within Methodism. They include presbyters, deacons, children’s/youth workers, parish development workers, ministry assistants and a field worker among those with memory loss.
The name this group of women has given themselves is www.absolutely! Viv Whimster says back in May 2003, this group was formed for mutual support.
“We called ourselves ‘Women, Wine and Waiata’, even though we mostly drink coffee and rarely sing together. That explains the ‘www’. As for the ‘absolutely’: on raising glasses to toast the newly formed group, someone exclaimed “Absolutely!” What better word to describe us?
“It is easy for those in church ministry to feel isolated, so we value the opportunity to meet together informally, and find the group a good way to welcome those new to the area. We’d love to hear from any other similar groups in different regions – and if you don’t have one yet, why not start one?