Wanda Durant (mother of Kevin Durant), Jane Jayroe and Gayle Griffin (mother of Blake Griffin)
Esther Women is a monthly program tailored for women of faith led by Former Miss America and TV news anchor Jane Jayroe. With special guests ranging from state leaders to the mothers of NBA superstars, Esther Women is designed to create meaningful dialogue and strengthen fellowship for Christian women as they navigate family, work and spiritual fulfillment.

Esther Women is an expansion of a project Jane began more than a decade ago, after she was appointed by then-Gov. Frank Keating to serve as Oklahoma’s Secretary of Tourism and Recreation. Determined to remain grounded in her Christian faith and wanting to share ideas with other women in community leadership roles, Jayroe launched a six-week course at Oklahoma City University. 
Robin Hilger, Stacy McDaniel, Jane Jayroe, Stephan Moore and Kris Steele
Now she is broadening that message to include women of faith from all walks of life.
“The themes of the life of Queen Esther in the Old Testament continue to resonate today for Oklahoma women,” said Jayroe. “Just as this young woman of faith risked everything for others so long ago, God has a purpose for each season of our lives, as well. We bask in the assurance of a God who is involved in this time of life whether it’s on the mountaintop or in the dark valley, whether it’s defined by busyness or boredom. We were created for such a time as this.”

Esther Women luncheons are held at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 222 N.W. 15th St., on the first Wednesday of each month, September through May, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. A season pass is required to enter. The luncheons are in the Christian Life Center (CLC) on the south side of the building. Parking is available on N.W. 14th Street. Each program will include inspirational music courtesy OCU and St. Luke’s United Methodist Church.

Broadway Star, Kelli O’Hara
“These luncheons are not about networking or promoting a cause,” Jayroe said. “They are meant to encourage and inspire women who already serve their families and communities and will benefit from this time for themselves. It is about the bonds of friendship and the strengthening of faith.”

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More Information about Esther Women

December 5: Oklahoma Stories of Faith

Oklahoma stories of faith will be center stage with the release of Jane Jayroe’s new book, Practice: Unleashing the Power of Faith. Several of the contributing authors will tell their stories including Kay Murcer, wife of New York Yankee great, Bobbie Murcer, and award-winning Chickasaw artist Mike Larsen.

January 9: Dr. Michael G. Strauss

Michael is an experimental particle physicist currently doing research on the ATLAS detector, one of the two multi-purpose particle detectors located on the Large Hadron Collider at CERN near Geneva, Switzerland. He has been a professor at the University of Oklahoma since 1995. Mike is also a Christian and has become known for his teaching on the relationship between science, rational thinking, objective evidence and Christian faith. He has a new book, The Creator Revealed.

February 6: Mark Gregston

Mark is known as the “Teen Whisperer,” for his effectiveness in helping parents and grandparents connect with their teens. He hosts a nationally award-winning radio program, Parenting Today’s Teens with Mark Gregston. Mark is the founder of Heartlight, a Christian residential counseling center for struggling teens, for nearly 30 years. His topic for “Esther Women” is how to better connect and engage with young people in your life, especially grandchildren.

March 6: Lauren Green McAfee and Jackie Green

Lauren and Jackie are a mother-and-daughter team who learned life lessons from the legacy of generations of Green family women, women in the Bible and throughout history. In their first book, “Only One Life,” they paint a bold picture of the Bible’s women like Esther, Mary Magdalene, and of course Mary the mother of Jesus for their courage, wisdom, and boldness. Lauren and Jackie invite us to join them in discovering how God multiplies seemingly small daily offerings of faithfulness into life changing events.

April 3: Berry Tramel

Berry is perhaps the best-known sports reporter in Oklahoma. He entered the newspaper business at the age of 17. He has enjoyed the journey ever since, from high school wresting duals and regional track meets to Orange Bowls and the NBA playoffs. Tramel joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. He was born and raised in Norman where he still lives with his family.

May 1: Tricia Everest

Tricia Everest closes our season. An attorney, Tricia serves as chairman of the advisory board to the Inasmuch Foundation. She is one of the state’s most effective volunteer leaders, serving on numerous civic boards and committees dedicated to improving the lives of Oklahomans. Also at this luncheon a new feature will be presented — The Esther Award for faith and courage.