For more information, please contact the METour director, Venedith Vargas, or via phone at 308-352-8085.
The METour (Mission Education Tour) is a seven-day mission experience for young women sponsored by the Great Plains United Methodist Women. METour participants have the opportunity to engage in mission, learn about United Methodist Women and experience the United Methodist connection by visiting and working at National Mission Institutions, Volunteer in Mission sites and United Methodist-related agencies. It's so much more than a mission trip!
METour is open to young women in the Great Plains Annual Conference ages 15-20. Local UMW organizations have the opportunity to sponsor and support young women on the tour. Total cost for the experience is $400 per person.
For more information about the METour please contact the METour director, Venedith Vargas, at email@example.com or via phone at 308-352-8085.
Louise Dutcher Johnson began what today is known as the METour (Mission Education Tour) in the Legacy Kansas West Conference of The Methodist Church. Her college major was sociology and she was torn between a career in social service or as a Methodist Deaconess.
While growing up in Kansas, she had been unaware of the rich opportunities for Christian Service through the Methodist Church. It was while she was teaching on the staff of the Kansas City National Training School for Missionaries and Deaconesses of the Woman’s Home Missionary Society that she realized the two could be combined.
Louise became a Deaconess. In 1950 she was serving as the Conference Director of Youth Work and was an ex officio member of the conference Woman's Society of Christian Service executive committee. The women had been challenged by the Boys' Work Committee of the Conference to provide some kind of trip for girls similar to the Boys' Travel Camp.
It was during this time, that Louise came up with the idea of taking a bus load of girls on a tour to nearby states to see firsthand the wide variety of social services carried out by the Women's Society of Christian Service. Her idea for a mission tour was approved.
Girls were to be chosen equally from the seven districts involving the Secretaries of Youth and Missionary in the selection. The Wesleyan Service Guild was invited to participate in the project with the Conference Guild Secretary serving on the planning committee. A representative of the Guild from each district was eligible to go on the tour.
The first trip was three weeks long and was planned around places where former students and Deaconess friends of Louise worked. They went from Wichita to Oklahoma City, Anadarko, Dallas, Fort Worth, Carlsbad Caverns, El Paso, Albuquerque, Farmington, and back to Wichita via Native Americans in Oklahoma and the Navajos at Farmington. They visited schools, community centers, the maternity center and hospital in Friendship Square in El Paso, as well as the contrasting program of Highland Park Methodist Church in Dallas, a very large, affluent church.
Based on the enthusiasm of the girls and the educational fringe benefits to the churches as a result of the girls sharing their experiences with Methodist Youth Fellowship and WSCS groups throughout the Conference, it was decided to make the trip an Annual Event. They decided on a three-year cycle of trips going in a different direction each year. The goal was to provide young women, the opportunity to become aware careers in Christian Service in the Methodist Church.