Alice Newman served as director of Hawaii WMU from 1985 to 2000. She recently called customer service at WMU and asked for a three-month extension on her Missions Mosaic subscription. Alice is battling ovarian cancer and does not expect to live beyond three months.
I first met Alice as a college student in the mid-1980s when Illinois WMU sent volunteers to Hawaii to help with training events. I remember a poised and graceful leader reflecting Christ to all she encountered. I was blessed to be present nearly four decades later in 2019 when Hawaii WMU celebrated its 75th anniversary. At that gathering, Alice shared defining moments of her ministry.
I called Alice to see how she was doing. In the course of the conversation, I asked Alice what WMU did for her, and she responded, “Oh, it opened my eyes to the world.” I wanted to know how I could pray for Alice. She said, “Pray all the days I have left I will be a blessing to someone.” Then she told me about her funeral. I am not surprised she took great care planning every detail. At the conclusion of the funeral, she wants her dear friend to read the original Girls in Action Pledge. Alice memorized it as a child, and it truly shaped her life. Then she recited the pledge for me:
Knowing that countless people grope in darkness and giving attention to His commands, I assert my allegiance to Jesus Christ, to His church and its activities, attempting by God’s help to abide in Him through prayer, to advance in wisdom by Bible study, to acknowledge my stewardship of time, money, and personality, to adorn myself with good works, and to accept the challenge of the Great Commission.
For nearly 136 years, WMU has been solely focused on the mission of God to reconcile a lost world. We give our lives in pursuit of that mission.
In February, we celebrate the anniversary of the founding of the WMU Foundation. In May, we celebrate the anniversary of the birth of WMU.
Between February and May, the WMU Foundation and WMU are partnering together to promote the Mission Matters Most campaign. We are asking people to give generously to the WMU Vision Fund, which supports the ministry of WMU.
Alice has lived a life in which the mission does indeed matter most. Would you join her in stewarding well that which has been entrusted to your care?
The mission is always larger than what one person can comprehend. I know You are at work through WMU locally and globally. Thank You for the privilege of joining You in the mission. Multiply my gifts for Your glory.
In Jesus’ name, amen.
Sandy Wisdom-Martin serves as executive director-treasurer of WMU, SBC.