First Director for GC Women’s Ministries, Rose Marie Otis, Passes Away
13 January 2023 |
Rose Marie Otis, age 82, passed in her sleep early on Saturday morning, January 7, 2023. She was living in Frederick, Maryland, with her husband of 64 years, Harold “Bud” Otis Jr. She was known as an author, speaker, and prominent leader within the Seventh-day Adventist church.
In 1977, Rose left being a stay-at-home mom to become the public relations director for the Review and Herald Publishing Association. In this role, she was responsible for public outreach, a weekly newsletter, and was a valuable partner to her husband, who served as the president of the Review and Herald Publishing Association at the time.
In 1988, Bud and Rose were asked by the Seventh-day Adventist Church leadership to work in Russia on a full-time basis. Bud and Rose worked tirelessly to gain permission for a seminary, university, and publishing house to be constructed there, and their dreams came to fruition in 1990.
In 1991, Rose was recruited to become the first women’s ministry director of the Seventh-day Adventist Church at the world headquarters in Columbia, Maryland. It was a big challenge to start a new department, but Rose was determined to see women involved in the mission. She created a women’s devotional book series that donated all royalties to create a scholarship fund to support the education of women committed to spreading the gospel. To date, over $600,000 has been donated.
By 1996, Rose was selected to be the vice president of the North American Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the first woman to ever hold this position. While a vice president, Rose continued to create opportunities for women to worship and spread God’s word. Within two years, she was asked to become the vice president of the Texas Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, another first for women in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
Despite stepping away in 2002 due to health challenges, Rose balanced the unique skills of grace and humility. Her quick wit and good sense of humor got her through the dark days, and she had the ability to laugh at herself and find the good in others. Her full obituary can be found at the website for Stauffer Funeral Homes.
According to the General Conference Women’s Ministries page, a celebration of her life will be held Sabbath, January 14, 3 p.m., at the Frederick (Maryland) Seventh-day Adventist church, located at 6437 Jefferson Pike, as well as live streamed.