Alma Thompson has a passion for helping children and introducing them to Jesus. That passion has taken on different expressions that have included adopting a child, teaching fourth-graders, connecting nursing home residents with children, serving as a children’s ministries director in a local church, and currently living as an active neighbor to more than 100 children and teens from nearby apartments who have found a safe and welcoming place to eat and play in her backyard.
Alma also is known throughout the Free Methodist Church – USA as a leader of adults. She has served on the denomination’s Global Overseers Team as co-superintendent of the Ohio and New South conferences. She has been a featured speaker for the bishops’ Equipping for Excellence and Expansion (E3) gatherings and the Wesleyan Holiness Women Clergy’s Revive conference.
Now she has a new ministry role that bridges her roles of servant leadership to children and adults — director of International Child Care Ministries, which partners with the global Free Methodist Church for the spiritual, educational, physical and social development of children through sponsorships, scholarships and creative initiatives. Her husband, Brent Thompson, will continue to serve as the Ohio Conference superintendent.
Bishop Linda Adams previously served as ICCM director. Alma was prayerfully concerned about the right person being selected to follow Adams at ICCM.
“Once Bishop Linda was on the docket for possible election to bishop, of course, lots of us started praying for the next ICCM director,” Alma said during an interview with LIGHT + LIFE. “It never occurred to me that it might be me.”
Thompson asked Adams how she could pray specifically for ICCM, but Alma said the inquiry came without any thought of “oh boy, I’d like that position.” Adams asked her to pray specifically for technological challenges with ICCM’s database along with the selection of the next leader.