The organized unit of United Methodist Women shall be a community of women whose purpose is to know God and to experience freedom as whole persons through Jesus Christ, to develop a creative, supportive fellowship, and to expand the concepts of mission through participation in the global ministries of the church.
United Methodist Women (UMW) has been organized for and involved in mission on behalf of women, children and youth for over 145 years. When you connect with UMW members, you join our foremothers as a part of this history.
At Mount Olivet, the UMW welcomes women of all ages to join our unit which focuses on initiatives that:
- Provide opportunities to grow spiritually
- Equip women & girls to be leaders
- Provide transformative educational experiences
- Organize for growth & flexibility
- Work for justice through service and advocacy
- Most of our members choose to join a small fellowship group that meets monthly, either at the church or at a member’s home. Some groups meet in the evening, while others meet during the day. There are General Meetings four times per year, where all members come together for a meal and the opportunity to hear about a topic of interest from a UMW member or outside speaker.
UMW is a laywomen’s organization. Our members are volunteers. We are a multicultural and multiracial organization committed to inclusiveness in all our activities. We are challenged to grow spiritually, intellectually and personally and to encourage others in their spiritual growth and personal development.
Why would I want to join UMW?
UMW offers you an opportunity to get to know and work with women who share a Christian perspective in approaching social issues in an atmosphere of learning and acceptance.
How is UMW organized?
Members are either members-at-large or belong to a Fellowship (sometimes called a “Circle”). Fellowships meet on a regular schedule, often monthly, at times convenient for the members of that group, some in the daytime and some in the evening.
What are meetings like?
There are general meetings which are events open to everyone throughout the year. In a typical year there will be lunch meetings during Lent, in May or June, and in November. Those meetings feature a speaker or program on a topic related to UMW’s interest in children, youth, and women locally, nationally or internationally. We have had speakers who have been on UMW international mission trips (“Ubuntu Journeys”), United Methodist missionaries and mission interns, representatives from the local nonprofit organizations and experts in such areas as human trafficking. In December, there is a Christmas Tea on the second Saturday. Programs at regular Fellowship meetings vary. They may include book discussions, speakers or videos. One Fellowship prepares bagged meals for A-SPAN (Arlington Street People’s Assistance Network) every month.
UMW is mission-oriented, hence the logo “Faith Hope Love in Action.” While we listen and learn, we also act. During Change the World Sunday, Mount Olivet UMW organizes the assembling of kits specified by United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), typically health kits and school kits that can be sent to places where there is need. We have also assembled birthing kits to be used by women in the vast number of places in the world where childbirth is untended. We have collected bras, to be taken to Africa by another Methodist church, that women can sell to in lieu of being trafficked. One group prepares bagged meals for A-SPAN monthly. We also help in small ways, by sending soup labels to Henry Fork Service Center, a United Methodist mission program in Southwest Virginia.
Are UMW events only for members?
UMW events are open to EVERYONE, men and women alike. Some topics, such as human trafficking, may not be suitable for children.