The inspirational story of Stonecroft…
- Mrs. Helen D. Baugh, homemaker in San Jose, California, initiated an extensive prayer ministry focused on the spiritual needs of America. Twenty-four prayer groups asked God for “new avenues” by which to share God’s love with others. God answered the following year when He led Mrs. Baugh to develop the first Stonecroft outreach.
Mrs. Baugh established the Christian Business Women’s Council of America (later known as Christian Business & Professional Women) in San Jose as a dinner program that provided an opportunity to present the Gospel to career women. The group adopted a project of Youth Home Missions to send and support young women as itinerant missionaries to rural America. Youth Home Missions later became Rural Missions.
God called Miss Mary E. Clark, former businesswoman and missionary in Maine, to join Mrs. Baugh and assist in leading the rapidly growing organization.
Village (Rural) Missions was established as a separate organization in response to the need for more permanent leadership in rural churches. Rev. Walter Duff, brother of Mrs. Baugh, became the National Director and served until 1991.
Christian Women’s Clubs were introduced as an outreach to homemakers. The first groups were established in Hartford, Connecticut, and Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Progress magazine became the official publication.
The ministry purchased a property known as Stonecroft in Kansas City, Missouri, to serve as the national Home Office location.
The Stonecroft Book and Supply Center (known as Stonecroft Resource Center) was incorporated as a distributor of carefully selected Christian books for all ages.
The Life Eternally Yours booklet was published as the first Stonecroft Life Publication.
The first Business and Professional Couples’ Club (now known as Stonecroft Couples’ Connection) was established in St. Louis, Missouri.
International Expansion: Christian Business & Professional Women and Christian Women’s Clubs were introduced in Canada in Toronto, Ontario. The first Christian Women’s Club outside North America met in Seoul, Korea.
After 5s were introduced under the sponsorship of Christian Business & Professional Women.
Friendship Bible Coffees, (now known as Stonecroft Bible Studies) written by Lucille F. Sollenberger, were introduced as an outreach program of small group Bible studies.
The Stonecroft Conference Center, located near Branson, Missouri, was established to provide “a vacation with a purpose” for people of all ages.
The Christian Business & Professional Women introduced a condensed one-hour luncheon format as an outreach to women in the marketplace.
Mrs. Baugh became Chairman Emeritus of the Christian Business & Professional Women of America. Miss Ruth Peachey was appointed as the new National Chairman of the Board of Directors.
On February 7, 1996, Mrs. Helen Duff Baugh, founder of Stonecroft Ministries, went home to be with the Lord.
Miss Joyce Courtney was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Stonecroft Ministries.
On March 9, 2002, Miss Mary E. Clark, first National Chairman of Christian Women’s Clubs of America, went home to be with the Lord.
Geneva Vollrath was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Stonecroft Ministries following Joyce Courtney’s retirement.
The Stonecroft Conference Center discontinued operation.
Friendship Bible Coffees were renamed Stonecroft Bible Studies.
The Baugh Center for Evangelism (formerly the Morningside apartment building) was completed; the Manor was renovated to be used as a guest facility for friends of the ministry.
(Content from https://www.stonecroft.org/history/)