Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

Assembly returning to roots


Ponca City- Albright United Methodist Women wear red in February as part of “Standing in the Red Zone,” a national UMW campaign to draw attention to the problem of human trafficking. Ponca City is close to Interstate 35, one of the major arteries for such trafficking. From left are: (front) Pastor April Coates, Aleene Romine, Jennifer Douglas, Allison Palmer, Lynnita Miller, Jeannie Burge, and Kathy Caldron; (back) Sara Palmer, Pat Purkey, Mary Cantrell, Paula Coppock, Sandy Kanelakos, Sally Warner, Kathie Goss, and Carol McGaughey.
Oklahoma United Methodist Women soon will travel to Columbus, Ohio, for Assembly 2018 — a highlight of the anniversary celebration that continues into 2019 as the organization marks 150 years of mission service, spiritual growth, and advocacy for women, children, and youth.

This year the gathering that draws international participants returns on May 18-20 to the city that first hosted Assembly, in 1942.

Eight thousand women are expected at the event, which is held every four years.

Forty women are registered to attend from the Oklahoma Conference, according to Harri Williams of Oklahoma City.

Among them are six Conference UMW officers, including Treasurer Tanya Case of Duncan, who will assist with the offering. Four women from Sapulpa will help serve Communion.

Those attending for the first time include Amy Neathery of El Reno-Wesley and Brenda Clear of Jones. They won scholarships from the South Central Jurisdiction UMW leadership team.

Also from Oklahoma will be Marsha Lyons and Faye Perry, both of Oklahoma City, who serve on national UMW committees; Jo Ellen Reed of Oklahoma City, part of the SCJ UMW team; and Professor Elaine Robinson of Saint Paul School of Theology at Oklahoma City University. Rev. Dr. Robinson directs the denomination’s training of deaconesses and home missioners.

The Assembly theme is “The Power of Bold.” Worship, plenaries, and workshops fill the schedule.

Speakers include a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, “The New Jim Crow” author, a filmmaker, climate scientist, and women’s rights activists.

In 1869, eight Methodist women in Boston raised funds and sent a woman doctor and woman teacher to India. Today’s organization of United Methodist Women counts 800,000 members.

Assembly registration closes April 9. The schedule includes a teen track of activities. Learn more at www.UMWAssembly.org.

More spring activities

 Spiritual Growth Retreat — On April 6-8, Cross Point Camp will host this annual UMW-sponsored retreat that is open to all women.

Glenda Skinner-Noble will teach “Creativity and Working with Our Hands as a Form of Spiritual Formation.” She is a clergy elder and visual arts teacher at an elementary school.

Sign up by March 28 at https://okumc-reg.brtapp.com/SpiritualGrowthRetreat2018.

Annual Conference luncheon — In late May, a UMW luncheon during the 2018 Annual Conference will honor United Methodist deaconesses who serve in Oklahoma.

— Holly McCray


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