Laying a Foundation

The WMU® Executive Board had gathered in the Kentucky Room at the national office for a regularly scheduled meeting. The day had been filled with committee reports, awards for scholarships and grants for a variety of individuals, and the usual business of WMU. As a second-year state president, I had come to love the comradery and fellowship with this group and looked forward to the two board meetings each year.

Financial concerns for the ongoing work of national WMU had been discussed on numerous occasions. A development office was in place to discover potential funding for the work of WMU. A new proposal came to the floor; one that would move the development office to a full-fledged foundation. The idea was to create a separate entity for the sole purpose of securing the financial support for WMU. The reaction among the board members covered a wide spectrum of thought, from “What a great idea!” to “We absolutely cannot do that.” After much debate, a motion to table the idea was received with a challenge to think and pray.

I remember seeking the advice of more seasoned leaders, as I’m sure others did. We prayed while we continued with the business at hand and reconvened two days later to discuss the idea again. This time the conversations were frank, thoughtful, and concerned but the vote passed to establish the WMU Foundation for the purpose of securing resources so the work of WMU would continue into the 21st century. We had watched and waited for the Lord to guide us and He worked in our midst to bring consensus in a marvelous way.

Over the past 20 years, much work has taken place establishing the entity we know and love today. We owe a debt of gratitude to many, especially the three men who have served as president during these 20 years: Richard Carnes, Alan Medders, and David George. We stand amazed at the increased missions funding available today and give thanks for the $10.8 million dollars awarded in scholarships and grants to deserving missionary kids, missionaries, and a variety of missions projects in the United States and overseas. A foundation once requiring a lot of financial support from WMU now makes significant contributions to support the work of WMU. All of this is possible because of the incredibly knowledgeable and gifted individuals who offered their business and financial expertise so freely through the years along with a commitment to WMU and missions.

As we reflect on the many ways God has provided for WMU, we especially want to recognize and celebrate 20 years of ministry partnership with the WMU Foundation. I hope you will join me in thanking David George, president, and the current foundation board and staff, as well as all who came before them for their faith in WMU and their commitment to keep the vision alive for generations to come. Together we have made a difference in the lives of countless people for the cause of Christ. Happy birthday, WMU Foundation! May the years ahead be filled with God’s blessings and much joy as you continue to serve.

 

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