“We still need trailblazers because there are frontiers to be conquered, there are still changes to be made and there are still barriers to be torn down.” ~ Bishop Carolyn Guidry
“Why we still need trailblazers,” started Bishop Teresa Snorton when introducing Bishop Carolyn Tyler Guidry on Thursday, August 29, 2013 at the Opening Plenary Session of Bishop Snorton’s Phenomenal Women’s Summit. Bishop Guidry, one of Bishop Snorton’s trailblazer is the now retired 122nd AME Bishop, who was also the first female Presiding Elder in the 5th Fifth Episcopal District of the AME Church and a contributor to the fourth edition of Those Preaching Women by Rev. Dr. Ella Mitchell. She used as a bases Genesis 1:26-27, with a focus on “God’s Phenomenal Woman”.
Infusing her own history as a woman growing up in Jackson, MS to becoming a Bishop in the AME Church, Bishop Guidry deposited into the hearts and minds of the woman an uplifting and encouraging message about the importance of being a trailblazer. Commencing with a definition of the word “Phenomenal”, she then listed biblical women starting with Eve and ending with everyday now women including the “big rig driver” all whom are phenomenal in there areas. Because, Bishop Guidry says, “God is still using Phenomenal Women in the preemptive to help with world today.”
To be phenomenal does not mean we have to do big things, Bishop Guidry stressed, reminding us of the women sewing bags to keep pennies and women who baked pies and stood across the street to sell to the men working in the factories. In fact, “it all began in the background.”
“Yes we still need trailblazers”, Bishop Guidry declared. She encouraged the participants to consider what would happen if “maybe if Phenomenal Women gathered together in prayer to feed the hungry, clothe the naked”, how much different the violence in the world could be. “If we could just love people as we love ourselves,” said Bishop Guidry, “we could change the world.”
She also cautioned that, “Being a trail blazer is never easy because the first one takes all of the shots from all the sides.” But if it is our place to be and our call to be, we should go. “When God calls you to be in a place, God provides for you in that place.”
Bishop Guidry’s challenge for the weekend was for the women to consider, “Will you decide, after this weekend, to be used?”
Video to come!