By David Dawson
Baptist and Reflector
FRANKLIN — Jeanne Davis was determined to bring pastors’ wives together. Even if they had to stay apart.
Fortunately, the internet made that possible.
Davis, the wife of Tennessee Baptist Mission Board president and executive director Randy C. Davis, teamed up last spring with Melody Cain, the wife of First Baptist Church, Seymour, pastor Corey Cain, and several others to create the TBC Ministers’ Wives prayer group.
The group, which meets weekly on Facebook, has experienced continual growth since it was formed last April. It currently has about 375 members.
Davis said the group is exactly what she’d hoped it would be: a place where pastors’ wives have an outlet to discuss their situations, to encourage each another and, most certainly, to pray for each other.
“Honestly, this has been the best — and most successful — thing that I’ve been a part of in terms of bringing the wives together and really getting them connected with each other,” said Davis. “Over the past few months, I have heard from so many wives who have said how much they enjoy it and what it means to them.”
Each Friday, Cain “goes live” on Facebook and leads the group through a devotional, followed by a time of prayer and sharing. Cain also posts each session on the Facebook group page so that it can be viewed later by those who were unable to join the live session.
“I think the Lord has used the group to gift us with a sense of connectedness and community during a time when that has been especially challenging to find,” Cain said. “It’s been such a blessing to be able to encourage, pray, and seek wise advice from others facing the unique challenges and blessings of ministry,” she added.
Davis noted that the group is intentionally limited to Tennessee Baptist ministers’ wives. “We did it that way so that if a person has a prayer request, they will know it is private — and that it is just being shared among our private, closed group. And I believe (the group members) feel very safe and very comfortable in that setting.”
Davis has always had a heart for pastors’ wives, but said she began feeling especially burdened for them last spring when the pandemic first took hold. She feared that many of them were experiencing isolation and feelings of uncertainty.
“So many (pastors’ wives) were calling me and asking me questions — what do you think about this and what should we do about that?” said Davis. “And I just kept thinking there had to be a way to get us all together in a setting where we can discuss things and pray about things.”
Davis knew Cain was having great success with a Facebook prayer group she had launched weeks earlier.
That group, which meets twice each week (on Mondays and Thursdays) now has as many as 400 participants on any given session.
“I’ve been shocked and humbled by the response,” said Cain. “When my friend asked me to start it, I remember thinking, ‘What if it’s just the two of us?’ But God reminded me to just be faithful and that whether it was two or twenty or, as it is now, over 200, just being available and willing was what I was called to do.”
Having seen God working in the lives of the members of that group, Davis asked Cain if she would lead a similar group for ministers’ wives — and Cain agreed to do so. The group began meeting in April.
Cain now keeps a running list of prayer requests — and praises — that have been shared during the week among the pastors’ wives.
Cain said she is excited about the way God is using both prayer groups.
“It’s definitely been an example of ‘more than we could ask or imagine,’ ” said Cain.