United Methodist Women

Our Purpose

United Methodist Women (UMW) is a community of women who know God, develop creative and supportive fellowship, and expand concepts of mission. As the largest denominational faith organization for women, UMW has a long history of living this legacy.


Women with Purpose

UMW is 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 concepts of mission through participation in the global ministries of the church.

It was organized for mission, and its women seek wholeness for themselves as well as others. Here’s how:

  • Centered relationship with God
  • Ministries with women, children, and youth
  • Local and global missions
  • Inclusiveness
  • Mission giving
  • Service, leadership development, and personal growth
  • Work with other organizations

UMW History 101

Since its start in 1869, UMW has grown from eight women to more than 800,000 members today. Even though its name and leaders have changed over time, its purpose and legacy remains the same. UMW celebrates the wise and wonderful women who took the first steps in this journey so many years ago.

Did You Know?
  • UMW inherits the vision and toil of women’s missionary societies of eight denominations.
  • Its legacy started when the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society first organized in Boston in response to a lack of women’s health in India.
  • During this time in history, women and children were legally classified as “chattel, legally dead, non-persons,” so there was little service to them.
  • The ancient symbols on the UMW emblem, the cross and the flame that suggest change and mobility, also appear on the emblem of The United Methodist Church.

Go to the National UMW website to learn more.


Sarah Harris

President Advisory Committee
Barbara Duckworth & Lynn Cockrell

Vice President — Memberships
Carol McCarthy & Barbara Duckworth

Vice President — Programs
Kathleen Reeves

Vice President — Special Event
Kelsie McGilvray

Nancy Fisher

Sheryl Preston

UMW Endowment Fund Chair
Linda Vigness

Nominations Chair
Lynn Cockrell

Brittyn Brender and Patty Adams

Lunch Committee
Lynn Cockrell, Kelsie McGilvray, Chandler Walters, LeAnn Ayers

Pastoral Staff Representative
Rev. Phyllis Barren

Staff Representative
Lisa Helm

Luncheons & Programs 

All women are invited to Luncheons & Programs sponsored by United Methodist Women. Most are held at 11:30 am in Wesley Hall, and there will be a $17 cost for lunch.
UMW Events  RSVP for Luncheon

Annual Fundraiser 

UMW’s annual fundraiser event benefits women, youth, and children in our community. It’s a chance to give back to others while gaining inspiration on our own faith journeys.


UMW is made up of many different groups, or “Circles.” No matter your personality, age, or schedule, we have a place for all women. We would be happy to welcome you to the UMW Circle of your choice!

List of First Church UMW Circles

Chair-side Mary Magdalene Circle

  • Still want to stay in touch
  • Unable to attend on a regular basis
  • Chairs: UMW Members

Circle of Eve

  • All about variety in everything
  • Variety of ages; mostly 40 to 70
  • Variety of programs, fun, and mission
  • Variety of meeting times and places; usually at night or on weekends
  • Chair: Julie Donovan (

Elizabeth Circle

  • Mothers of young children
  • Age 25 to 40
  • Meet monthly on second Thursdays from 11:30 am – 1:00 pm at FUMCFW for lunch, fellowship, and Bible studies

Grace Circle

  • All life stages from single to married with children
  • Age 20s to mid-30s
  • Connected by friendship, fellowship, and grace
  • Meet monthly on second Tuesdays at local restaurants
  • Chairs: Kelsie McGilvray (

Hannah Circle

  • Active in many church areas
  • Support all UMW service projects
  • Age 50+
  • Meet monthly on second Tuesdays at 10:00 am for lunch and fellowship in members’ homes to enjoy a variety of programs, including UMW studies
  • Chair: Ann Tennison (

Mary-Martha Circle

  • Varied backgrounds
  • Enjoy friendship and bonding
  • Age 70+
  • Meet monthly on second Tuesdays at 10:00 am in Room 231 of FUMCFW for food, fellowship, and interesting programs based on UMW Purpose
  • Chair: Linda Brown (

Rachel Circle

  • Interesting, active women who love friendship, fun, and study
  • Meet monthly on second Thursdays from about 11:00 am – 1:00 pm at FUMCFW for lunch, fellowship, varying programs and occasionally meeting in the evenings
  • Chairs: Sheri Dewar (, Lisa Helm, Julie Bergen, and Dawn Potter
  • Download schedule 

Ruth Circle

  • Friendly and open
  • Age 50+
  • Participate in UMW studies and activities
  • Meet monthly on second Tuesdays at 10:00 am, usually in Room 331 of FUMCFW, then go out for lunch (December & May meetings are at a local restaurant)
  • Business meetings are not held during the summer, but Ruth members still meet for lunch on the second Tuesdays of June, July, and August
  • Chair: LeAnn Ayers (

Susanna Circle

  • Active in church and community
  • Supports FUMCFW service projects
  • Age 60s to 70s
  • Meet monthly on second Tuesdays at 10:00 am in homes for a variety of programs with guest speakers
  • Chair: JonAnna Reidinger (

WinGS Circle

  • Develop lifelong relationships, support, and encouragement through God’s unfailing love
  • Meet monthly on second Tuesdays at 7:00 pm in restaurants or homes
  • Chair: UMW Members

Join Us!

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