American Baptist Women's Ministries became a national organization 1951, with the formation of the National Council of American Baptist women. But women's ministries in our denomination began long before 1951. For well over a century, women have been strong partners in the American Baptist family-raising money for missions at home and abroad, sending missionaries, and ministering in local churches and communities.
Through the years, women have shaped their ministries to meet emerging needs. The Woman's Baptist Society, organized in 1871 (the forerunner of the Woman's American Baptist Foreign Mission Society), focused on women in other lands. The Women's American Baptist Home Mission Society, formed in 1909, centered on evangelism in the United States. The World Wide Guild was established in 1915 to train, inspire, and empower girls for Christian ministry and leadership; it became a program of Educational Ministries. In 1992, AB Women's Ministries affirmed and accepted all responsibility for the girls' ministry and organized it as AB GIRLS.