The Importance of United Methodist Women
I was recently asked if United Methodist Women is relevant today. My immediate answer was, “Of course. Look at all the great things we are doing to empower, educate, and transform women, youth, and children around the world and at home.” But the question actually stopped me in my tracks. It was coming from local, active United Methodist Women members and retired pastors.
There are more choices today than ever before for women to get involved in politics, social issues and organizations for change. Many women’s organizations are celebrating similar milestones in their founding dates. Colleges and universities are educating on the status and role of women in the world. There are college majors that teach how to organize community action. Short trips and working outside of the United States, in rural areas and with people in need, are possible for anyone high school through retirement ages.
I have utilized many of these choices. I am a member of a sorority I joined in college. I studied abroad and visited the native Bribri in Costa Rica. I am a returned Peace Corps volunteer. So, what makes United Methodist Women different? I could do all of this because I was a United Methodist Women member. I took my faith with me. I was brought up seeing strong women lead the churches and committees. I learned at a young age that a woman’s voice was just as important as any other voice.
We have news of wars and destruction at our fingertips and images of injustices from around the world coming into our homes and newsfeeds each time we open an app or turn on the news. It is more important now than ever to remember and share that United Methodist Women have been fighting injustice since the beginning. Look into your own history and the things you accomplished. Share United Methodist Women’s history and learn what we have done as leaders of change since 1869.
It is our role as Christians to share the news of Christ. It is our job as women to make sure even the smallest, most marginalized is invited into this fellowship. You know what United Methodist Women does—you are doing it. Share it in different ways, to different women. Just as no two stories are the same, the way you know United Methodist Women is different than I do. The common thread is United Methodist Women and the faith we share.
This month, we honor our roots with our Day of Giving and growing the Legacy Fund. Share our history and your story. When you see something unsettling on the news or in your newsfeed, see what you can do in your community, with your local United Methodist Women to raise funds or awareness. Eight women started with a penny and a prayer in 1869. Imagine what 800,000 women and a dollar can do. You have a voice. Join a committee at your church and use your voice to educate members on the importance of United Methodist Women.