Topic: Women in Leadership

As preachers, leaders, teachers, missionaries, organizers, women have shaped the history of the Methodist Church. In their work with the poor, vulnerable and disenfranchised, church women have initiated important social and political reform.

In the Methodist tradition, women were ordained as ministers as early as the late 19th century, and in 1956 the Methodist Church, a predecessor body of The United Methodist Church, granted women full clergy rights. Women now make up approximately 25% of clergy in The United Methodist Church.

We invite you to explore the inspiring stories of women who have made important contributions to the life of the church both past and present as well as resources to help nurture your own participation and witness as a church leader.


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Church Leadership
The Rev. H. Eddie Fox reads the gospel lesson during morning worship at the 2008 United Methodist General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas. Fox, a longtime director of World Methodist Evangelism, died July 28, 2021, at age 83. File photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS.

Rev. Eddie Fox, evangelism pioneer, dies

As longtime director of World Methodist Evangelism, he traveled the globe to share the gospel and encourage other Wesleyan Christians to do the same.
Local Church
A volunteer holds an umbrella for a woman at Crosspoint, a United Methodist church in Niceville, Fla. Ninety percent of the congregation at its South Crestview campus volunteers in some capacity. Video image courtesy of Crosspoint via Vimeo by UM News.

Volunteerism is a priority at Florida church

More than 90% of church attendees at the South Crestview location of Crosspoint, a United Methodist Church in Florida, do volunteer work, motivated by an associate pastor with endless enthusiasm for ministry.
Worship
The First United Methodist Church in Denton, Texas, joins in worship on June 6, the first time the sanctuary had been used for that purpose since the COVID-19 pandemic forced building closures all over the U.S. Photo by Sam Hodges, UM News.

Churches urged to relaunch, not just reopen

The spirit of innovation seen in the COVID-19 pandemic needs to continue and deepen, church leadership experts say.