Christian Women in Leadership: Connie Denninger
For Connie Denninger, being a Christian leader is all about taking every opportunity to assist others on their journey and approaching new tasks with authenticity and humility. Read on…
What does it look like to be a woman in a leadership role? How does Christian faith impact leadership? And what happens when you put the two together?
To find out, we caught up with Connie Denninger, Co-founder of Visual Faith Ministries and long-time friend and supporter of WLI. She holds an AA from Concordia College, Ann Arbor, a BA in Home Economics Education from Valparaiso University, a Master’s in Secondary Education from Indiana University, and a Master’s in Church and Community Leadership from Concordia University, Chicago. She is also speaking at the upcoming WLI National Conference where she will lead a workshop on Living as a Deployed Digital Missionary.
We asked Connie a few questions about her job and her views on Christian Leadership:
What’s the favorite part of your job?
Discipling others who disciple others and looking for every opportunity to equip the laity for Gospel sharing experiences.
How would you define Christian leadership?
Christian leadership involves the continual learning process of engaging others in your circle of influence to establish relationships that allow you to relate to the culture but always with Kingdom views.
How do you bring your Christian values into your work?
A challenge is to live the same “real” life in the public realm while managing the values of always being: available, affirming, accountable, and authentic.
Looking back, is there a time on your leadership journey where you perhaps felt uncertain about the future, but God had a bigger plan?
I think this would be my story just about every day. The goal is to find enough light shed on the path for just the very next right step and then trust. I am thinking especially about the decision to go back to college for a Master’s degree at age 51.
How does working in a religious or secular setting change the way you lead as a Christian?
We live in a rather sheltered “Christian bubble” sometimes, and my work with Visual Faith Ministries keeps me connected there, but with all sorts of possibilities to intersect with those who do not yet know Jesus.
Who are your biggest role models as a leader?
I have been blessed to have some wonderful spiritual mentors in my life. Two women “ahead of me” a bit, Lola and Rae, have been deeply nurturing supporters of my own spiritual formation journey.
Is there a passage in scripture that resonates with you as a Christian woman in leadership?
Repeatedly in the past few years I keep coming back to Esther 4:14b, “And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”
What most prepared you to be a Christian leader in the workplace?
I believe that not having the needed skill set has always kept me humble and in learning mode. This time of discomfort allows the Lord to lead and having little monetary resources for my vision has caused me to be creative.
What is the most important piece of advice you would want to pass along to other Christian women in leadership?
Form a team of others willing to learn along the way and don’t let the questions stop you from moving forward; then pray hard.WLI