2018 Workshops

Take time to familiarize yourself with this year’s workshops before you register! Permitted our technology cooperates, the speaking workshops will be available for listening on the website following the retreat, so even if you couldn’t fit one into your schedule, you don’t have to miss out!

Our Keynote Speaker – Faith Taylor

Faith is a redeemed sinner, saved by God’s indescribable grace, who is seeking to know her Savior better each day and to grow in Christlikeness. She loves to teach, explaining the Word of God as it practically applies to the lives of ladies, and sharing with them His working in her own life.

She is a graduate of Bob Jones University with a B.A. in Church Ministries and plans to complete a M.A. in Biblical Studies in May 2018. Following graduation, she spent 4 years on staff at Bob Jones as a teacher of ladies’ classes and as the director of Ladies’ Extension Ministries. Faith is the author of A Look Within, a women’s Bible study book and of Pray for Him, a prayer booklet for ministry wives.


Faith is thrilled to spend her life by the side of Dr. Dean Taylor. Following Dean’s completion of seminary, Dean and Faith entered local church ministry. In 2016, after pastoring for 25 years in Indiana, Wisconsin, and South Carolina, Dean became a college professor and chairman of the ministerial training program at Faith Baptist Bible College in Ankeny, Iowa.

The desires of Faith’s heart are to be continually growing in Christlikeness, to support her husband in his life calling, to be an encouragement and help to their four adult children and beautiful grandchildren, Wren and Lewis, and to be used of God to encourage growth in the lives of others around her as she experiences the work of God in her own life.

“When Life Gets Hard: Partner with Someone on Their Path of Pain” by Sue Nicewander

What do you do after the hug? People in pain are often overwhelmed by their grief and unable to fully express their needs, but the local body of believers can reach out meaningfully even when the agony is unspoken. Sue shares her own journey and some of the many valuable ways her local church has ministered the Word in practical ways when she needed it most. Learn some do’s and don’ts that can help you to be part of the healing hands of Christ during debilitating grief.

Sue Nicewander, MABC, ACBC, BCC, has been counseling since 1994. She is founder and administrator of Biblical Counseling Ministries, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, and serves on the Council Board of the Biblical Counseling Coalition. Sue is certified by the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors and has her MA in biblical counseling from Central Baptist Theological Seminary. She is author of Building a Church Counseling Ministry Without Killing the Pastor, Help! I Feel and Ashamed, and articles in the Journal of Biblical Counseling and Baptist Bulletin. Sue and her late husband Jim were married for 43 years. They have two beautiful married daughters and six delightful grandchildren.

“Embracing Families with Special Needs Children in the Church” by Christina Miller

What is the church’s responsibility to those with special needs? How are we called to minister to them? How can we encourage moms of children with special needs in the church? In this workshop, Mrs. Miller will use Scripture and the example of Jesus Christ to answer these important questions to encourage women to recognize their God-given responsibility in this oft neglected area of church ministry.

Christina began her ministry at MBU in 2010 along with her husband Jeff, who is the head of the Humanities Department and Speech program. In 2012, she assumed the role as Director of the Academic Success Center, where she ran the University’s extensive academic tutoring program, provided academic coaching and counseling to students, and taught and continues to teach the Post-Secondary Academic Success class. In 2016 Mrs. Miller assumed the role of professor at the University, where she enjoys teaching Special Education and Psychology classes. Mrs. Miller also has the privilege of directing plays alongside her husband and coaching speech recitalists at the University on occasion. In addition, Mrs. Miller enjoys traveling to multiple churches and schools across the country, presenting her one-woman monologue on the life of Amy Carmichael, as well as speaking at ladies’ events. The Millers boast three precious gifts from God: Ethan (17), Trey (15), and Lyvia (12). In her free time, Mrs. Miller enjoys reading, baking/cooking, watching cooking shows, playing strategy games, and spending time with her family.

“Am I a Backseat Driver?” by Carole Vawter

As you travel through life beside your husband, are you enjoying companionable “rides,” or competitive rivalry? God’s design for marriage is often difficult for us to practice because, in our hearts, we think we are exceptions, that we know better. Many sweet times of fellowship are in store for us when we choose to embrace God’s plan for our marriage relationship, and much heartache will be avoided! Using humor as well as Scripture, Carole will challenge women to respond to their husbands in a way that will be life-changing.

Born in the 1950s in Casper, Wyoming, Carole accepted Christ as her Savior at Camp Grace in Wheatland at the age of 6. Growing up, all she wanted to be was a pastor’s wife! She loved playing the piano and progressed rapidly in classical training as well as improvisation, serving as church organist from the age of 13. Carole met Wayne Vawter while she was still in high school. Wayne’s college choir performed in Casper and enjoyed a youth singspiration following the concert. Carole played the organ that evening and Wayne decided he would return to Wyoming as soon as possible to get to know her better! 4 years later, Wayne and Carole were married and began to serve the Lord together in various churches in Minnesota, Illinois and Wisconsin.

Carole is thankful to have been given the blessing of serving alongside her pastor-husband as a church musician and Bible teacher. In addition, she has taught piano lessons for over 30 years, as well as music classes for 12 years at Maranatha Baptist University. Since 2001, Wayne and Carole have traversed Wisconsin for his ministry as Mission Director of the Wisconsin Fellowship of Baptist Churches.

The Vawters have 5 married children (4 sons and a daughter, in that order!) and 12 grandchildren.

“Out of Gas” by Rochelle Skinner

Are you feeling out of gas as you serve God and His people, and fight the spiritual battles before you? Is your soul in need of encouragement? Do you desire to know how to find encouragement for your soul, how to be courageous on each path of your faith journey and how to encourage others in the midst of their spiritual journey? Please join us as we look at what God’s word says about courage and how to be courageous in all seasons of our spiritual journey of faith in God, as well as how encourage others with the Hope that is found in Christ alone.

Rochelle was drawn into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ in the Spring of 1986 and thus began her faith journey of worshipping God with all her heart, soul, mind and strength.

She is still learning what this means and how to live it out with each choice and in each opportunity. She married Tim in June of 1987 and has enjoyed growing with him through each season of their 30 years of marriage. She is blessed to have two precious sons by birth, Anthony and Andrew, a daughter-in-love, Rachel, and three handsome grandsons Lucas (7), Alex (6) and Stephan (4). She was called to the ministry of encouragement and discipleship to her sisters in Christ in 1994. She began taking classes toward biblical counseling in the spring of 2010 and became certified with the Association of Biblical Counselors in the fall of 2014. Rochelle currently counsels for Faith in Focus Counseling ministry at Faith Baptist Church in Rhinelander, WI. Her greatest joy is watching people find hope and encouragement through a growing relationship with Christ that is fostered through the reading and application of God’s Word.

“Pass with Care: Developing Healthy Relationships Among Women in the Church” by Lori Ring

“This workshop is designed to help all of us be better friends and mentors to the ladies God has given us to love. As we survey the Scriptures together we will be encouraged to cultivate closer relationships within the local church.”

Lori is a Pastor’s wife from Rhinelander, Wisconsin where she serves along side her husband Mark at Faith Baptist Church.  Mark and Lori have been married for 33 years and have three grown children, two grandchildren, and a teenager still at home that keeps them young!  Lori’s other loves are spending time with people, spending time outdoors and music.  Lori’s Journey of Faith began as a young child when she learned that Jesus loved her and died for her sins at an after school Bible club, where she accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior. That journey continues through all the ups and downs of life but each day is sweeter than the day before!

“Route 66” by Diane Westphall

Pack your GPS for our travel on Route 66!   It will alert us to speed limits, stop signs, Yield signs and no parking posts. See you there!

(Hint: Route 66 = 66 books of God’s guidance, His Word.)

An educator at heart, Diane Westphall has enjoyed teaching in Christian schools at the upper elementary/jr high level as well as the ladies’ Bible class at her church. Teachers’ “free” summers afforded her varied opportunities which included, among others, working on a kibbutz in Israel, conducting vacation Bible schools on the northern Wisconsin route of Rural Bible Crusade, conducting oral English exams for a university in Mexico, and teaching culture and oral English to professional English teachers in China. Using the China summer experiences to prepare her, God then asked her to teach fulltime in mainland China for 3 years. Diane now works for Wisconsin Family Council/Action as project and events coordinator and has traded those “free” summers for citizen events around the state.


Jewelry Craft Workshop with Ruth Shore

Come & make a custom beaded necklace to take home with you!

Ruth Shore grew up in a small Wisconsin church and attended a Christian School run by the same church.  She attended Maranatha Baptist University and graduate in the spring of ’01 with a degree in Early Childhood Education.  Ruth is now the mother of four daughters, and is a full-time volunteer at her daughters’ school. She and her husband are active members of Holmen Baptist Church in Holmen, WI, where she leads the music for the Wednesdaynight children’s program, sings in the choir, plays violin in the orchestra, and helps plan for special events.  Ruth took up jewelry making as a hobby over 10 years ago, and has enjoyed teaching others the same skill.

Chalk Painted Mason Jars Craft Workshop by Susan Weigand

Chalk Painted Mason Jar Projects are fun and easy! They can add a “farmhouse”, “rustic” or “shabby-chic” detail to any home decor. We will be painting jars so it can get a little messy. Be sure to dress appropriately.

Susan Weigand was saved at the age of 11 shortly after her Mom was saved and they started attending a gospel preaching church. She is an active member of Faith Baptist Church in Wisconsin Rapids. She has been married to her husband Dan for 36 years. She is the mother of five and the grandmother of five. She loves to follow the example of her creator God by being creative.

Ladies’ Chorus by Christa Mielke

Come and enjoy using your voice to make a joyful noise as we work together on a piece of choral music that will be sung during one of the general sessions! Cost for music is $2.

Christa Mielke was born and raised into a Pastor’s home. At the age of 5, she realized that her Bible upbringing was not enough to bridge the gap between her and God. She repented of her sin accepting the work of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection as necessary and sufficient for her eternal salvation. After a period of rebellion in her youth God intervened, and on July 13th, 2001, she surrendered to the Lord to be, go, or do, anything that He would have for her. Since that time, Christa’s life has been truly transformed as she has been working out her own salvation with fear and trembling, while God is working in her both to will and to do of his good pleasure. After graduating from Pillsbury Baptist Bible College in 2007 with a double major in Bible and Vocal Music, she married Daniel Mielke. He has been the Associate Pastor at First Baptist Church of Milltown, Wisconsin for 7 years. Christa has been actively involved in music ministry for over 10 years, and has loved working with her husband in the ministry that God has given him. She is actively involved in one on one discipleship, teen girls Bible studies, occasionally traveling with the music group Forever Be Sure, and whatever other opportunities God leads through her husband to embrace. She is passionate about deep study of the Word of God,Biblical discipleship especially as outlined by Titus 2, and sharing what she has learned with others. Daniel and Christa have 3 children, Marcus (8), Matthias (5), and Katiyanna (2). Christa’s main calling is to her husband and children, and she endeavors to build up her family in the ways of God. She is very excited to share what God has laid on her heart with whoever attends her workshop, as it’s been a very real and personal struggle that God has been working out in her own life. Come ready to dig into the book of Philippians. It would be advantageous to have thoughtfully read through the whole book before attending. (it’s only four chapters) 🙂

Handbell Choir by Debbie Brown

This is a fun, hands-on workshop which provides everyone an opportunity for music involvement. Ability to read music is NOT necessary. ANYONE CAN PARTICIPATE! During our workshop we will practice various songs and then play one of them as special music during a General Session. Learning to play tone chimes is not difficult, so join us as we praise the Lord together through music.

Debbie Brown was born on an Army Base in Fort Riley, Kansas. Their family moved to several bases, including The U.S. Army Garrison in Baumholder, Germany, before finally settling down in Terre Haute, Indiana. After graduating from Bob Jones University she began teaching piano lessons and music classes in Anderson, South Carolina. She is passionate about working with children and helping them to develop and use their talents to serve in their local churches. Her hobbies include stamping greeting cards, and working outside.

She is married to Paul Brown who has been the Senior Pastor of Bay City Baptist Church in Green Bay since June of 2009.

Their son, Captain Brandon David Brown, his lovely wife, Sarah, and beautiful granddaughter, Colby, live in Sneed’s Ferry, NC, where he serves as a United States Marine Helicopter Pilot.