United Methodist Women
|Headquarters||475 Riverside Drive |
New York, New York 10115
General Secretary & CEO
|Harriett Jane Olson|
The United Methodist Women (UMW) is the only official organization for women within the United Methodist Church (UMC). Founded in 1869, it is "the largest denominational faith organization for women with approximately 800,000 members". The UMW offers all Methodist women opportunities for spiritual growth, leadership development, transformative education and service and advocacy. Its current advocacy priorities are climate justice, economic inequality, maternal and child health, and ending criminalization of communities of color and mass incarceration.
The UMW often offers presentations at General Conference for the United Methodist Church (UMC), and has taken a number of positions on social and political issues. The UMW describes itself as open to all women and advocates for women's rights regardless of income, sexual orientation, race, age or other backgrounds. The UMW supports immigration reform and advocates on behalf of refugees' rights. Along with the General Board of Church and Society, the UMW is pro-choice and supportive of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice.
In 2008, the UMC voted to affirm the UMW's support for pro-choice positions and organizations. In 2016, the General Conference voted in favor of UMW and the church's General Board of Church and Society withdrawing from the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. However, the denomination remains pro-choice.
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- "UMC withdraws from interfaith pro-abortion rights group". Religion News Service. Retrieved 2016-05-30.