March is Women’s History Month, a time for observing and commemorating the vital role women play in society. As United Methodist Women members, we’ve played a vital role in the lives of women, children and youth since our inception. Share the articles in this special legacy issue of response with your church members, family and friends to promote the work that we all do.
One of the strengths of our mission institutions is how they have been able to assess and respond to changing needs in the communities they serve. Richard Lord writes about one such institution, Wesley-Rankin Community Center, in his article “When Housing Is Unaffordable” on pages 20 to 23. In it he describes how the 84-year-old center is currently helping area residents who are being displaced from their neighborhood because of gentrification. Lack of affordable housing is at a crisis point in the United States, affecting people in cities, suburbs and rural areas alike. Research shows that low-income households with children and those headed by women face the highest rates of eviction. Dedicate a group meeting to a conversation about housing insecurity and how it affects communities. To prepare, visit Just Shelter (www.justshelter.org), a resource raising awareness about the human cost of insufficient affordable housing.
Sankofa is a Ghanaian word that translates to “go back and get it.” The concept of Sankofa is that by reflecting on the wisdom of the past we ensure a strong future. This issue reflects on United Methodist Women’s past and serves as inspiration for our future.
We reached back into our archives for “In the Beginning” by Yvette Moore on pages 24 to 27. It’s a brief history on the group of women that formed United Metho-dist Women. To learn more about our rich history, visit http://www.unitedmethodistwomen.org/
legacystories. Another great historical resource is the book With Unveiled Face by Theressa Hoover, passages from which appear in the section introductions in this issue.
“A Legacy of Service” on pages 28 to 31 focuses on long-time United Methodist Women member Vera Moore, whose distinguished legacy includes serving in numerous positions on local, district and conference levels as well as on boards and committees of The United Methodist Church. A self-described “multitasker,” at age 81 she continues her service by helping keep our online and social media presence on track and by mentoring the next generation. We’re always eager to hear from you about how you came to be a United Methodist Women member and how doing so has helped you grow. Send your stories to response editor Tara Barnes at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can share them with others.
“Ministries of Love, Justice and Service,” on pages 34 to 37, traces the evolution of the deaconess and home missioner movement in The United Methodist Church. Says writer and deaconess Amanda Mountain, “We form a covenant community that is rooted in Scripture, informed by history, driven by mission, ecumenical in scope and global in outreach.”
March 23 marks our fourth annual Day of Giving that supporting the Legacy Fund, a permanent endowment dedicated to the work of future generations of United Methodist Women. Organize a Day of Giving fund-raiser at your church and share articles from response to enlighten your congregation about the many ways that we put faith, hope and love in action.