Dr. Nell Maxwell: A Lifetime of Ministry Impact

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Dr. Nell Maxwell, founder of Women Alive, led a generation of Christian women in Canada and the world to life-changing experiences through her ministry. Dr. Maxwell continues to encourage Christian women despite having suffered an injury in a serious car accident a few years ago.  Together with her husband Ted, the couple has partnered with Tyndale Seminary’s Doctor of Ministry (DMin) program to offer the Nell Maxwell Award.

Dr. Maxwell recently joined the first five recipients of the Nell Maxwell Award for a luncheon. This $2000 scholarship is awarded to one incoming woman each year in the DMin program. Recipients need to have a vision for ministry and demonstrate an ability to serve in Christian leadership that reaches into Canada and across the world. The Maxwells created this scholarship because they “have a heart for women,” said Dr. Paul Bramer, Director of the DMin program at Tyndale. They want to encourage female leaders in the church who have a “national or international ministry.”

At the luncheon, Dr. Maxwell and the award recipients were able to share stories of encouragement with each other. “It was a historic occasion,” said Dr. Bramer. “Dr. Maxwell shared about her experiences with famous Christian women – including Joni Eareckson Tada and Corrie ten Boom.” The conversation was reciprocal as this pioneer in women’s ministry listened and encouraged each recipient as they shared their vision for ministry with her.

“Nell is a trail-blazer and change-agent,” said Donna Dong (DMin 2012), the Multiethnic/Multicultural Ministry Director for Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship Canada and the 2009 Nell Maxwell award recipient.

Dr. Dong’s ministry is far reaching. She equips national and global ministry teams “to lead with cross-cultural awareness.” Her vision for ministry is to “see successive generations of youth and students from diverse ethnic and cultural heritages become confident of God’s love for them in Christ.”

Meeting Dr. Maxwell greatly impacted the award’s recipients. “I was encouraged by her stories of how God developed her as a leader and in her ministry,” says Dr. Dong. “I am so grateful for her and her life and leadership in Canada.” Being of Lebanese heritage, Dr. Maxwell exhorted  the recent DMin graduate to “personally remember the Arab-background peoples in Canada” in her work to make Inter-Varsity a more interculturally-aware ministry.

Women in the DMin program will continue to be encouraged by Dr. Maxwell’s impact because of this award and because of her lifetime of ministry – both past and present.


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