From the President (July/August 2018)

PresJul18

Invite and Grow

Summertime means longer, slower days. It means family picnics and vacations, time for spiritual growth and reflection and transformational education opportunities with Mission u. As women of God, our faith does not take a break. We may just need to discover new ways to participate and express our faith during the hotter, slower months of summer.

Recently I was at the dentist, and the hygienist and I started talking. Through pauses from tools being changed, our topics turned to travel and books. The hygienist got really excited about a particular book on mission work. Do you know how hard it is to talk when you’re getting your teeth cleaned?

Part of mission work is listening and part is sharing. I learned about her family, her life and how she came to the west side of Indianapolis to work in a dental office, all in less than an hour. I shared my role and work in United Methodist Women. Turns out, she grew up in and still attends a United Methodist church. So, what is my next move? Invite her into United Methodist Women! We are in this together.

At work during this past year we had a graduate fellow working with us. As I got to know her, I learned that her fiancé grew up United Methodist and that she was moving to Alabama. We talked about what she was learning in her graduate courses, and I would share how United Methodist Women was stretching my fundraising knowledge with the Legacy Fund. She became active in the Junior League, and I asked what she liked about it. It’s because they work with women and children, she said. So, of course, I told her about United Methodist Women in Alabama.

As our graduate student’s year finished up and she was getting ready to move, she asked if I would connect her with some women in the area. It’s not pressure sales—it is life, and sharing yours with others is the beginning of mission work and the work of United Methodist Women.

United Methodist Women has an amazing Reading Program. Recommending a book can be mission work, or sharing that book with others, donating it or “accidentally” leaving it behind. Even simple acts invite others into transformative education.

Visual expressions of faith can speak louder than words. A smile can do wonders to welcome the first timer at Mission u. Make room for someone new at your coffee hour table or in your circle meeting. Breaking our routines and stretching our comfort levels is the bold work to which we’re called.

I hope Assembly renewed your charge for mission and helped you harness the Power of Bold. I know some decisions of the church have reinforced our next steps, that in today’s world women still need to organize for mission with women, children and youth at home and around the world. Mission happens one step at a time. Let’s take the next step together.

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