Heritage Sunday 2019 – May 19 – will celebrate the 150th anniversary of United Methodist Women and is themed "Bold Faith, Audacious Women."
The General Commission on Archives and History's (GCAH) History and Interpretation Committee urges annual conferences, districts and congregations to discover and celebrate all that women have accomplished in the last 150 years. Use this special Sunday and the resources provided below to launch any number of history-related projects in the annual conference and local church.
Heritage Sunday is an annual observance for United Methodists to remember and reflect on their legacy. It is an ideal time for local churches and Annual Conference Commissions on Archives and History and Historical Societies to develop programs and projects reflecting the importance of history in congregational formation and casting the future.
According to The Book of Discipline 2016, “Heritage Sunday shall be observed on Aldersgate Day (May 24), or the Sunday preceding that date. The day provides an opportunity for reflection on heritage, celebration of where the Church has been, how it understands itself as it shapes us today, and the meaning of Christian conferencing. Heritage Sunday calls the Church to remember the past by committing itself to the continuing call of God (Paragraph 264.1).
History and historians sometimes get a bad rap, as if the subject and its devotees are only interested in the past and tediously preserving it. The General Commission on Archives and History staff believe and experience every day the power of history not merely as remembrance but active engagement, the past pointing to purpose, the DNA that makes us who we are, forming how we live-into the future. Send feedback about this year’s Heritage Sunday resources and how you used this material in your celebration to firstname.lastname@example.org
If your church is looking ahead, the theme for Heritage Sunday 2020 on May 24 will be "200 Years of the General Board of Global Ministries"
- American Women in the United Methodist Tradition
- Living the Legacy: The Continuing Journey of Women in Mission
- Racial Justice Time Line
- Timeline of Women in Methodism
- Telling Their Stories: The History of Women in the Local Church (Archives & History)
- Gallery of women in UMC History (Status & Role of Women)
- Notable Women in Methodist History
- Schmidt, Jean Miller, Grace Sufficient: A History of Women in American Methodism, 1760-1939. Nashville, Abingdon Press, 1999.
- Dougherty, Mary Agnes Theresa, My Calling to Fulfill: Deaconesses in the United Methodist Tradition. New York: Women's Division, General Board of Global Ministries, The United Methodist Church, 1997.
- Russell E. Richey, Rowe, Kenneth E. and Schmidt, Jean Miller, The Methodist Experience in America: A History, Volumes I and II. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2000 and 2010.
Fred Day is the General Secretary of the General Commission on Archives and History. Originally published by Archives and History April 2019.