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We Make it Happen: A Living Timeline

At the District level, she was Treasurer of United Methodist Women, and a member of the District Board of Ministry for over 20 years. She was Florida Conference President of United Methodist Women when the Charter for Racial Justice Policies was to be voted on, and she itinerated each district of our conference to meet with women who had questions about this or any other issue. - Della Tuck

It started with a coat. Anita was volunteering at the education center where refugees and other immigrants learn English. “I’ve got my son’s extra coats at home.” So she brought one the next day and gave it to one of the needy students. Then she got the idea of a “free table” where donations of other warm clothes could be donated. She appealed to the church and got donations. She d beyond the four walls of the church to “make it happen.” Anita is that kind of person. - Mary Hopkins

excerpt from a poem written about Aleen Fison - Lifetime experiences and lessons she's always willing to share. Graciously she'll start each meeting with prayer. To promote UMW national missions she never misses a chance; With her urging our unit's mission giving continues to advance. - Linda Heim, President of St. John United Methodist Women

Our church meant so much to Mrs.Annie that a beautiful stained glass window was given in her and her husband's memory. Every time you enter our church the first thing seen is that beautiful stained glass window about the choir. - Kitty Bargeron, President of Wadley United Methodist Women

She was in charge of training many acolytes of our church. She worked endlessly with each trainee until they could do it exactly right. She made sure they understood the reason for and the symbol of being an acolyte. She sat with the acolyte throughout the service to be sure they were paying attention to the service and knew exactly when to go into action to conclude the service by taking God's light out into the world. - Kitty Bargeron, President of Wadley United Methodist Women

One of the great legacies that she left to our church are the Chrismon decorations that she worked tirelessly on by hand sewing the many ornaments to each decoration. Those Chrismon decorations still adorn our lovely Chrismon tree each holiday season. Each year when we unpack and place them on the tree, someone is sure to comment on the making of the beautiful ornaments. - Kitty Bargeron, President of Wadley United Methodist Women

As Sunday School teacher she taught the love of Jesus to many, many children of our church. We all learned to say "God is ove" as we put our offering into the basket. As a member of United Methodist Women, she worked to increase mission to women and children in many ways. She really and truly was able to "Make It Happen" in our church. - Kitty Bargeron, President of Wadley United Methodist Women

So who is Betty Erickson? She is - Boisterous. Energetic. Talented. Team Player. Youthful. Encouraging. Resilient. Independent. Caring. Knowing. Spiritual. Open heart. Neighborly. -

Mrs. Lane served as a President of the Chicago Southern District. She fought for the dignity and equality in representation for African American women in the Church and fought for justice pertaining to all women and children. Her legacy can be seen in the women who rose to UMW leadership in the District, Conference, Jurisdiction and UMW National Office. I am grateful for her touching my life, as well as the lives of so many women of all races and ages. - Lois Moreland-Dean

My mother joined the United Methodist Women some forty years ago. As the photo says, she brightens up everyone she meets. Many times when she and I are out, I will see people with their heads down not looking up. As she walks by Mom will say "Good Morning" or "Hello" and suddenly they look up with big smiles on their faces. By her example I hope to be as brave and be the first to greet others giving them a smile...and hope you will be too. -Lisa Hite

I was one of the many little girls who accompanied her Mother to her UMW meetings. I thought I was a member of the unit by virtue of being her daughter. I shall remember her voice praying and advocating for the voiceless. She planted the seeds of prayer, service and mission. She nurtured them with Love in Action and I blossomed into her legacy She embodied Faith, Hope & Love in action and is my inspiration! - Mrs. Lois Moreland-Dean

I recognize my great-grandmother Ada George Clark, 1872-1943. I am researching her story while writing the history of my great-grandfather Rev. Peter W. Clark. During Peter's assignment as Presiding Elder (District Superintendent) in Lake Charles, Ada raised her six children, alone as he traveled throughout his territory. She represented him when he was unable to be present at events. She stood ready to lend a helping hand often with little acclaim. - Elaine Parker Adams

Our submission for the Living Timeline is in memory of Retha Kitchen and in honor of Agnes Hudson and Martha Byrd. The art is meant to show how they seamlessly incorporated their love of God and the UMW, as well as their love of justice and mission into their personal lives. They live out the PURPOSE of United Methodist Women in all that they do and we are so proud to have them as part of our unit. - Sally McGrath, President

Georgia Lister is a member of Trinity United Methodist Church in Greeneville Tennessee. She is the United Methodist Women President of Holston Conference. She has chosen integrity as the foundation of her leadership style...she knows everything else will eventuall be built thereon. - Jettie Hess, Communications Coordinator

When I think of my church, I think of Shirley. She is one of the women in this church that makes me love FUMC Gainesville so much. So Shirley, thank you for being you and showing us that an amazing attitude and embracing heart can take you far in life. - Kendal Balda

Catherine Murphy of Longmont, Colorado created and dedicated this artwork to the United Methodist Women members of the Lydia Circle at Longmont First United Methodist Church. She says in her artwork to her sisters 'Got Your Back'.

I chose this picture because it is off the cover from Susan's first album. She’s an awesome woman of God and is a great role model for mothers and wives. She’s personally been a blessing to me as I try to move closer to God. It feels good to have someone that believes in you and helps bring out the best in you. by Krystl Johnson

United Methodist Women member, Geraldine Eleanor Moulton Paulus. Gerry’s interest in missions and women encouraged her to hold District, Conference, and Western Jurisdiction offices. She traveled to Kenya in 1977, 1986, and 2002 and participated in the World Methodist Conferences in Nairobi, Singapore, and Rio de Janeiro. Gerry still lives in her own home and is active in church and UMW affairs, studying and visiting about the issues. Submitted by Pastor Waveland

  • Claudia Davis

    Gerry has been attending District and Conference events, and she adds such a wonderful energy to the room. I know we all hope that we can be as active and dedicated as she is when we are her age.


    Gerry will be 100 in June, and attended our District meeting on April 5, 2014, which means an overnight trip for her! Amazing! Tish Herries

Tillie Friesz has been and still is an inspiration to many of our United Methodist church women. She remains a prayer warrior, mentor, and Bible scholar. Tillie readily shares the love of God and continues to encourage others to share the gospel to everyone. Correspondence, emails and cards of encouragement and birthdays are still shared by Tillie at the age of 103 years, to many of her friends. Respectfully submitted by, Dixie Scheid

The United Methodist Women member in my life who has instilled in me the drive to Make It Happen for others is Elizabeth Stewart. On a Sunday morning, you might find Elizabeth retrieving flowers from around the church for shut-ins. In one hand she carries the flowers, with the other she uses her walker to get around. The Methodist church does not practice sainthood, but many of us would like to name Elizabeth Stewart a saint. Linda M. Priest, Secretary Northern Illinois Conference

  • Juanita Rampy

    Congratulations Saint Elizabeth! Thank you!

  • Anne Capps

    no that's Jean Pope, Bobbie Samac, Dawn Bond, and all the others at the Pine Hill Charge UMW - including you sweet girl. Love each and everyone of you who inspire me to do more for UMW!!!

In honor of how her mother has inspired her, Prerna Balasundaram sings a song she wrote about and for her mother - Praveena Balasundaram, United Methodist Women member and United Methodist Women staff, Executive Secretary, WMN, Communications. This beautiful song is titled Under My Wings.

  • Wendy Bishop


  • Anissa New-Walker

    Yes, this is a truly beautiful song isn't it? Prerna has remarkable talent!

  • Wendy Bishop

    this song is our inspiration for a new womens group in honor of the mothers of the women in our group

  • Theresa Johnson

    Since 1981 I have worked for United Community Center'sInc. In Birmingham alabama The United Methodist Women have supported our Mission as long as I can remember. If it wasn't for the women their prayers and their love for our center many families would be lost. I thank God For blessing me to meet so many women who is able to do much for us and others. Theresa Johnson

  • Theresa Johnson


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How does a United Methodist Women member in your life inspire you and others to Make It Happen? Submit a story for the We Make It Happen A Living Timeline.

  • Verlee Gilkerson

    When I was a little girl grade school age one of my earliest memories was going to circle with my Grandma and Mom. I know that all those early days of being a Methodist woman lead me to the faith path of mission I follow today. There have been many women that have influenced my life. Lorene Miller of Kearney First taught me to stand up and lead making me run as one of their youngest unit presidents at 31. She was a real lady and her leadership example is the template I built my leadership style on. Later my best-friend Carol Renfro got me started as a Heartland North District officer in the MO Conference. She was very Bible and study group oriented and got me attending studies I probably would never would have taken on my own. I know they have made me a better informed woman.These women are no longer walking the journey with me but they have moved on and are missed. There are currently many women of faith who are still leading me in examples of faith, on going missions, and study.

  • Elaine Bellamy

    I too grew up attending the "Ladies Aid Society", being one of 4 generations of females in my family. When I started 1st grade, I grieved having to miss those Thursday meetings in various ladies' living rooms, where they made me feel like I was an important member of the group. One of my earliest memories of Methodist women, is of sitting underneath a quilt frame surrounded by the women of our church, as they were quilting. Now, I'm president of that same group, 60+ years later.

This watercolor (second in the series) represents my Aunt Bonnie in her “Sunday Best” and her giving nature. My Aunt Bonnie was a shinning example of how to help those in need. It seemed she knew why, when and how to help someone even before they knew to reach out for help. Every day, my Aunt Bonnie lived the United Methodist Women purpose to support women, children and youth. She was always up to the challenge to Make It Happen for those in need. - Anissa New-Walker

We would like to honor the Late Doris B. Paul for her dedicated service, “Making the Mission of the UMW Happen.” Women of all ages joined the UMW organization due to Doris leadership skills, support for missions and friendship. She worked to increase the knowledge of the women’s missionary movement, the rights for ordained clergy women, taught mission studies and advocated for issues that involved women children and youth. - The North Georgia Conference United Methodist Women

Martha E. King I was a very young minister’s wife and struggling to find my place in the church. Martha encouraged me to take leadership roles as they were offered. She called and wrote me regularly and became the person to whom I could turn for advice and counsel as I took district and then conference offices. - Sally Curtis Askew

  • Jettie Hess

    Very well said; a much deserving tribute to a lovely United Methodist Woman.

  • Nancy Higgs

    I remember meeting Martha King in 1975 when my husband served the Shannon UMC in the Rome District, North GA Conference. She was an inspiration to everyone she met! She took an interest in you and cared about you! She was an example of Love In Action way back then !