At the Speaker’s prompt, a flurry of wadded-up paper “snowballs” showered the podium, each carrying a woman’s cry for help.
Ten-year-old Emma ran around, retrieving crumpled questions and prayer requests. Precious missives gathered today would be key in determining future Women’s Connection events in Tulsa, Oklahoma, known as Woven.
Pinpointing the perfect Speaker is top priority for longtime Stonecroft Regional Representatives and Speaker Consultants Cindy Bartz and Julie Wilson. Resonating talks invariably spring from presenters who have experienced God’s power while going through their own challenges.
“They’re dealing with relationships, rejection, forgiveness, mother/daughter issues,” Cindy says. One Speaker lost her husband to a drunk driver; another was surprised by an unexpected pregnancy. “These things make them relevant, which is key to reaching the next generation.”
It was a young presenter who suggested the snowball idea. Generally, there’s little time for Q&A after a presentation. She proposed distributing pieces of paper to attendees at the start of each meeting. “At the end, they can write about anything they’re concerned about,” Cindy says. “Maybe about their families, how to handle mean people, fear and anxiety in children – any questions they have. Wad all those up and toss them toward the stage.”
Everyone who pitches a paper snowball is assured her concerns will be considered for an upcoming meeting. Planning Team members categorize responses and reschedule the same Speaker and singer to return in a couple of months to answer questions. “Everything feels comfortable, as in the earlier meeting.”
“If you’re trying to get to the heart of what women care about, have them do The Snowball,” Julie says. “Then search for Speakers. If you see a common thread of, say, fear – find a Speaker who answers that concern. Set your program to address those things, and you will draw people like you cannot believe.”
Stonecroft Speakers. Helping smooth out crumpled lives for 80 years – and counting.