"I'm grateful and humbled that God would call me to this task," Litton said. "And thankful that NAMB would extend to me this opportunity. I definitely have a passion for pouring into ministers' wives and seeing them step into their calling with passion, freedom and purpose.
"Ultimately, this role is about advancing the Gospel," Litton said. "It's about helping ministers and their families be effective in their ministry."
Litton, wife of Ed Litton, pastor of First Baptist Church North Mobile in Saraland, Ala., said she looks forward to the challenge of helping NAMB minister to and get resources into the hands of ministers' wives on a national level in the areas of encouragement, leadership and crisis care as well as the areas of education and spiritual formation.
"I think we can harness the power of the Internet through Twitter, blogs and podcasts to create an online presence to resource ministers' wives. It's the vastest reach we have," Litton said. "We want to use every resource available to get into the hearts and homes of pastors' wives."
Litton served as director of women's ministries for four years at Cross Church at Pinnacle Hills in Rogers, Ark., during which time she traveled extensively, speaking to women, teaching and encouraging pastors' wives and training leaders.
Ezell said NAMB is seeking "to step up our emphasis on leadership development and ministry to pastors and their families to help prepare them for the task at hand. Kathy is a gifted communicator and a natural leader. That, in addition to her experience as a pastor's wife, makes her the absolute, perfect fit for this particular role.
"We'll be looking to Kathy to design and implement a national strategy to minister to pastors' wives," Ezell said.
Litton was married to the late Rick Ferguson, former pastor of Riverside Baptist Church in Denver until his death in 2002.
"My time in Denver for 14 years is critical to this position at NAMB. The bulk of my adult ministry was spent in the West and it definitely changed my worldview, having grown up in the Midwest," Litton said.
The idea of working with an entity focusing on church planting is a source of excitement for Litton.
"I'm very interested in getting involved in the lives of church planter wives," she said.
Church planting was an important part of her and Ferguson's ministry in Colorado.
"It was Rick's goal to plant 100 churches out of Riverside. We'd planted 25 churches by the time he died in 2002," Litton said. "That's part of who I am, and I still have a heart for that."
Litton was remarried in 2009 to Ed Litton who, like Kathy, lost his spouse in an automobile accident in 2007.
"My bio will always contain my marriage, life and ministry to Rick. Ed's will always contain his marriage, life and ministry with Tammy," Litton said, referring to Ed's late wife. "We can no more separate Rick and Tammy from our present lives as we can cut off our arms -- we easily and naturally fold that season of our lives into our present one."
The experience of losing her husband Rick, has given her a heart for encouraging women who face unexpected challenges in life, Litton said.
"We want to walk with ministers' wives as they face challenges, whether it's juggling the demands of family versus church needs, juggling career and family, finding their own ministry, maintaining their own spiritual lives or how to support their husbands," Litton said. "We want to support them in the unique role God has called them to. It's vital that ministers' wives receive support and care from this denomination because I believe they are critical in our desire to advance the Gospel."
Carol Pipes is a writer for the North American Mission Board.
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