The study materials are available at UMWMissionResources.org. The Kindle version is available at Amazon.com
The Gospel of Mark and Radical Discipleship
by Janet Wolf
Practicing Resurrection: The Gospel of Mark and Radical Discipleship, by Janet Wolf, presents this well-known Gospel through voices and experiences that are often relegated to the margins. Where we stand, what we see, who we listen to, whose
stories and voices we value or dismiss shape the way we understand the world and the Bible. This study incorporates the stories of those on the margins to uncover how the gospel is alive and well today—how God is, and always has been, calling us to live out the Word in a radical way.
The study begins in Mark 14 with the story of a woman who bursts into a gathering of male disciples to anoint Jesus, and, to the surprise of the disciples, is resoundingly affirmed. Throughout Wolf utilizes personal experiences and stories entrusted to her through her work in prisons and as a community organizer to invite us to experience the power that stories have to heal, transform, liberate, and unshackle. And she engages us in scripture through a participatory Bible study process, which raises up voices and perspectives that are too often silenced or unheard. She pushes readers to ask: Good news for whom? Good news about what?
In five chapters, the study examines different passages in Mark and challenges readers to discover what radical discipleship looks like in their context. Each chapter ends with questions for personal reflection to help readers apply what they are learning in the study.
The Rev. Janet Wolf is an elder in The United Methodist Church and has served as a pastor of rural and urban congregations. In July 2012, she was appointed to work with Marian Wright Edelman and the Children’s Defense Fund on nonviolent
direct-action organizing to dismantle the cradle-to-prison pipeline, work that includes the organization’s Freedom Schools and the annual Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry. She is the author of “To See and To Be Seen,” a chapter in I Was in Prison: United Methodist Perspectives on Prison Ministry, edited by James M. Shopshire Sr., et al., and numerous other writings.
Women United for Change: 150 Years in Mission
~by Ellen Blue
In Women United for Change: 150 Years in Mission, distinguished scholar of United Methodist Studies Ellen Blue invites us to explore and celebrate the history of United Methodist Women and its predecessor organizations. As Blue says, “Women have done some of the most important ministry the church has ever accomplished.”
Here she shares the voices and stories of our foremothers, including the former denominations that now compose The United Methodist Church. Despite serious resistance from churchmen, these women formed foreign missionary societies to provide education and health care for women and girls internationally, and home missionary societies that tackled racial justice and other pressing social issues at home. They also helped establish the deaconess program, the first opportunity in our tradition for large numbers of women to perform full-time ministries of service and justice, and opened the doors for women to take on leadership roles in many arenas.
As our 150th anniversary approaches, United Methodist Women’s ability to address the needs of women, children, and youth has grown tremendously. We can step out with creative ministries because the women who came before us laid a strong foundation for us to build upon. As we work together on critical issues, we also grow in our own faith. We are a 150-year-old women’s movement still saying yes to God’s call to mission.
Ellen Blue is the Mouzon Biggs, Jr. Professor of the History of Christianity and United Methodist Studies at Phillips Theological Seminary and an ordained elder in the Louisiana Annual Conference. Her books include St. Mark’s and the Social Gospel· Methodist Women and Civil Rights in New Orleans.
“What About Our Money?” A Faith Response
~ by Susan K. Taylor
What About Our Money? explores how we relate to money within the context of our faith. Through this connection between our faith and our money, readers discover how to live closer to God and God’s people, even in our North American culture that is so deeply defined by money. She explores the biblical foundation of abundance (sufficiency), which stands in opposition to the scarcity narrative our culture tells us from the time we are very young.
Find the study leader’s guide and other resources at www.unitedmethodistwomen.org/mission-u/money.
Youth and Children study materials
– stay tuned for this information!