I have been known to have excellent hearing. Sometimes I can smile and walk away from conversations I wasn’t meant to hear, but other times my heart tells me to share some faithful insight. Some might call it being “nosy,” but I call it being responsible.
Recently I overheard one United Methodist say to another, “I can’t believe the women’s group doesn’t give money to the church for its building funds.”
I politely asked if he was speaking of the local United Methodist Women. He was.
I explained that United Methodist Women members do give financially to their local churches. “As members of God’s church we are required to give to the church of which we are members,” I said. I told him that pledged funds to United Methodist Women are second mile giving—beyond what members give to their church. They support United Methodist Women’s national mission institutions, international scholarships and grants, leadership and educational training events and more.
The man just stared back.
I asked, “Does your church have a building fundraising committee? Have you asked some of those wonderful, dynamic United Methodist Women members to serve on the committee?”
He gave me a nod and walked away.
As people of God we give so our local churches will continue to be a beacon of hope as they shine the light showing the way for others.
“Bring the full tithe into the storehouse,” says Malachi 3:10, “so that there may be food in my house, and thus put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts; see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing.” We are proud, faithful and loyal members of our churches and of United Methodist Women.
United Methodist Women members who are members of local churches give first to their church and second to United Methodist Women. Second-mile giving supports the work of United Methodist Women as tasked to us by The United Methodist Church.
This second-mile giving allows women to come together on a spectacular faith journey living out our Purpose. It allows our national mission institutions to transform communities, helping survivors of human trafficking, providing affordable child care, feeding homeless children, offering job skills and parenting programs, offering a home for retired missionaries and deaconesses, restoring pride and dignity to individuals across the country. It trains women to be leaders in their church, community and country. It empowers women, children and students around the world to achieve a better life. It puts faith, hope and love into action.
As United Methodist Women members we are called to listen—and to be ready to say, “Say what? Let me tell you the real story.” Speak up! We have a lot to say about turning faith, hope and love into action on behalf of women, children and youth around the world. We’ve been doing it for almost 150 years. Continue to listen, and to be ready to say, “Say what?”
YVETTE KIM RICHARDS
United Methodist Women