Amazing adventures of UMW

A nine-page comic book highlights the “Amazing Adventures of Methodist Women in Mission.” 

As we celebrate the 150th anniversary of United Methodist Women, response magazine has featured comic-style illustrations of our legacy. The text from those pages follows.

Read the flip book at www.unitedmethodistwomen.org/responsecomic.

The Founding of United Methodist Women

In the 1800s, Indian women were being denied care because male doctors were not allowed to treat them.

On a dark and stormy night in 1869, Clementina Butler and Lois Parker shared this with six friends after returning home from India with their missionary husbands.

They wrote a constitution.

Women began talking to other women.

And donations began to pour in.

In the fall of 1869, Isabella Thoburn and Clara Swain left for India as Woman Foreign Missionary Society’s first missionaries.

Today, United Methodist Women regional missionaries carry on the tradition by working around the globe to assist women, children and youth.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

Isabella Thoburn

Isabella Thoburn was born on a farm a bit east of St. Clairsville, Ohio, on March 29, 1840.

She learned from her mother that we are all on earth to serve, not to be served. She later called this the “law of service.”

Isabella trained to be a teacher.

Her brother suggested she teach in India.

But the church wouldn’t send an unmarried woman.

So the Methodist Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society sent her!

Isabella began by teaching a class of six girls in India.

Thoburn’s work culminated in the founding of Isabella Thoburn College, the first Christian college for women in Asia, which exists to this day.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

Mary Scranton

Mary Scranton was born Dec. 9, 1832, in Belchertown, Massachusetts, to a Methodist pastor.

After her husband died, she moved to Ohio where her son lived and became active in the Euclid Avenue Methodist Church’s Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society.

When her son was appointed to a Methodist medical mission in Korea in 1884, the woman’s society asked her to become its first female missionary in Korea.

There she established Korea’s first school for girls, Ewha School for Girls.

Today, Ewha University, the world’s largest university, and Ehwa High School in South Korea are both legacies of Mary’s work.

The fruit of her mission supports women across Asia through the work of the Scranton Women’s Leadership Center, a United Methodist Women partner in Seoul.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

The founding of response magazine

Soon after establishing the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society in March 1869, the founding women decided …

Woman speaking: We need a publication to share our work!

With a $500 loan from Mr. Lewis Flanders and pledges from others, the women started the magazine to enlist and educate members and share women’s voices from around the world.

Just two months later, the first issue of the Heathen Woman’s Friend launched. Subscriptions were set at 30 cents a year.

Harriett Merrick Warren became the magazine’s first editor at the age of 25 at a time when very few women directed papers and magazines.

By the end of the year, the 8-page magazine was self-sustaining, with 4,000 subscribers. By 1872 the page count increased to 16, and circulation reached 25,000.

Today, response magazine continues this almost 150-year tradition of sharing the voices and work of faith-driven women in mission.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

The First Assembly

The Woman’s Society of Christian Service planned to hold its first Assembly in St. Louis, Missouri, until they discovered that local hotels wouldn’t allow black and white women to stay together.

Woman speaking: Never mind. Good bye!

So the leaders took a bold stand and moved the Assembly to Columbus, Ohio, where, (after negotiations) black women were welcome.

While the world was at war, Methodist women gathered to speak of an enduring peace, meaning justice for all people-economic justice as well as political justice, and enduring peace that meant the right for all peoples to earn their living, to have education, to be treated with respect.

The women then went to the Board of Missions of the Methodist Church to demand a policy barring the board from meeting in segregated cities.

Assembly 2018 returns to Columbus, Ohio, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Methodist women organized for mission and plan for 150 more. Join us!

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

Theressa Hoover

One of five children, Theressa Hoover was born in Fayetteville, Arkansas, in 1925.

At a time of racial segregation in the South, her father raised her to be fearless, go to high school and attend college. She graduated from Philander Smith College in 1946.

In 1947, she helped convert a turkey farm in Little Rock into Camp Aldersgate, one of the first integrated facilities in the United States.

As associate general secretary of the Women’s Division, in 1968 she became the first black woman executive in the church and oversaw the massive reorganization and merger of many groups into what is now United Methodist Women.

Theressa stood up to Methodist clergy in order to secure a fiscal future for the women’s organization.

In 2008, her hometown of Fayetteville proclaimed May 30th as Theressa Hoover Day.

Today, United Methodist Women honors her legacy with the Theressa Hoover Community Service and Global Citizenship Award, a grant awarded to young women for study, exploration, learning research and/or observation in one of United Methodist Women’s priority areas.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

Countering Hate Speech

In late September 2012, Islamophobic ads began appearing in New York City subways, alluding to Muslims as “savages.”

United Methodist Women could not let this hate speech stand unchallenged.

General Secretary Harriett Jane Olson reached out to Daisy Khan with the American Society for Muslim Advancement. Daisy connected Harriett with an interfaith coalition working on a response.

The group decided on a counter ad. United Methodist Women designed the ad and purchased ad space.

They did the same in Washington, DC, and San Francisco.

Within days United Methodist Women’s ad appeared in each subway station that featured the hate ad.

United Methodist Women recognizes that women have always been the most significant victims of violence. We have a particular incentive to work toward peace.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the 

United Methodist Women Members

United Methodist Women members put faith, hope and love into action in their churches and communities.

They see need around them and prayerfully discern how they can help.

Supplies for a local women’s shelter, quilts for a nearby nursing home, baby showers for mothers and children in need, school supply drives-United Methodist Women members are faithful servants.

You’ll also see them in their legislators’ offices, in front of capitol buildings, voting at General Conference, marching in the streets and writing letters to the editor. United Methodist Women members advocate in solidarity with the marginalized.

Their fundraisers for mission also bring together the community at bazaars, garage sales and meals. Their educational forums offer opportunities for church and community members to transform themselves and the world.

In the 21st century, the world needs these women organized for mission.

United Methodist Women continues the legacy of our foremothers by putting faith, hope and love into action for women, children and youth around the world. Celebrate our 150th anniversary at Assembly 2018, umwassembly.org, and support mission for another 150 years and beyond with the Legacy Fund: unitedmethodistwomen.org/legacy.

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