St. Paul’s has an active Unit of Methodist Women.
We have five active Circles within the Unit and a group of At- Large members who do not have time for Circle participation, but want to help the Unit with our mission fund raising.
The Purpose of United Methodist Women reads: The organized unit of UMW shall be 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.
At St. Paul’s we work to fulfill the purpose by sharing fellowship, programs and mission education at our Circle meetings. We actively support the Women’s Division of the Board of Global Ministry by pledging money to those missions each year. Our pledge also supports the UMW work of our Yellowstone Annual Conference. In addition to our mission pledge to the Women’s Division our Unit supports local programs that support women and children. Those include Food Share, Friendship Center (for victims and families who need support after domestic abuse), Florence Crittenton Home (for pregnant teens, teen moms and their babies), Helena Indian Alliance, Last Chance PowWow, Family Promise (with donations of money and support during our church’s hosting weeks), and Angel Fund in the local schools. In addition to money support the Unit collects school supplies for the Helena Stuff the Bus Project, UMCOR Health Kit items and conducts clothing drives for distribution at the Blackfeet Reservation Free Store in Browning.
Our Local Unit Focus for past several years has been on homelessness. We have read, studied, and entertained programs on that topic. We have members who have been trained as Family Promise volunteers and participate in fund raisers for the Family Promise Program. Through our involvement at the District Level, we have also begun studies of human trafficking and immigration issues.
Our Annual Conference Mission support goes to Intermountain where we give money donations and participate in the Festival of Trees. We support the Blackfeet Parish with clothing drives, money donations and Mission Education trips. We support our church children’s and youth programs and the Flathead United Methodist Church Camp.
Each Circle has a chairperson or facilitator and other officers.
The five Circles in our Unit and their contact people are:
Doris Long: Jackie Mathews
Wesleyan: Pauline Hooper
Shalom: Marty Thieltges
Sheila Cates: Anita Turner
Susanna’s Circle: Vicki Weida
The Unit officers are: Teresa Bustos, President; Kathi Cates, Vice-President; Kathleen Hall, Secretary; Claudia Davis, Treasurer.
In addition to the officers, the unit has Program chair-people to help fulfill the purpose of the UMW. They are Cindy Baril, Program Resources; Lorraine Kuntz, Mission Collections; Ellie Parker, Social Action; Patti Bonnes and Vernetta Dalbec, Membership; Vicki Weida, Vernetta Dalbec and Kathi Cates, Nominating Committee.
Members of our Unit serve as District UMW officers. They are: Shirely Warehime, Claudia Davis and Kathi Cates.
As a service to the church community, UMW will provide funeral receptions and wedding or special birthday parties. Shirley Warehime, Kathi Cates and Marty Thieltges are coordinators for those events.
In 2012 our Unit’s income was $11,000.00 and of that amount over $10,000.00 was given to mission. While we celebrate being that involved in helping women and children who are oppressed, we also celebrate our active involvement in the community of St. Paul’s and the friendships we create through all of our activities.
Any woman is invited to join us at any time during the year. Declare your interest at Welcome Home Sunday in September or contact the President, Teresa, (406-461-4989) or call the church office (406-442-5643) and we will help you choose a Circle that fits your time schedule and your interests.