In the early days of WMU, a popular method of saving money for missions by many missionary groups was the use of small wooden or cardboard banks called Mite Boxes. Named after the story of the Widow’s Mite (Mark 12:41-43), the women used them to save for missions. The boxes were sealed and once coins were saved, the money was kept in the mite box until Mite Box Day. On that day, the women would bring their boxes to be opened and counted for missions. Thousands of dollars were raised by missions groups, making these boxes known as the Mighty Mite Boxes.
As we celebrate the 125th birthday of WMU, in tribute to the spirit of our founders, Kentucky WMU has created a Heritage Fund Mite Box. These were introduced at the 125th Celebration Banquet during the 2013 Annual Meeting. During the year, we are asking people to use the Heritage Fund Mite Boxes to save 125 of something: dimes, quarters, dollars or whatever you choose! Then bring back the Heritage Fund Mite Box to the 2014 Annual Meeting. Proceeds will benefit the Kentucky WMU Heritage Fund, a permanent endowment which supports the missions education work of Kentucky WMU.
One thousand mite boxes were ordered. In addition to those distributed at the banquet, they will also be given to participants at SALT (Association Training, May 18) and Excel (WMU Leadership Development, July 27.) For those who would like to obtain a quantity to use in your WMU group, a one-dollar donation for each mite box is requested to help defray printing costs. We will make them available as long as quantities are available. If you would like to print out a copy of the mite box and make your own, you can also print the pattern available at kywmu.org/hfmitebox. Print on 11×17 paper to make the bank as large as possible. Use card stock weight paper if possible. (Note: It will be slightly smaller than the one available from Kentucky WMU.)
In “The Missionary Mite Box,” a brochure prepared many years ago by the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society, it said of the mite box:
– What is it? A simple paper box.
– What is it intended to hold? Offerings from grateful hearts.
– Why are the contents always of value? They are offered willingly unto the Lord.
– How shall we use the mite box? Keep one for your own use…let it be a constant reminder of the daily, ordinary blessings of your life. Put one where friendly eyes can see it; let it remind them of duty and privilege. Treat it as a sacred thing (this feeling will grow upon you). Encourage children to use it, and be ready to answer their questions about it.
Join us in celebrating the 125 years of WMU by participating in the Mite Box Project this year. Bring yours to the 2014 Kentucky WMU Annual Meeting!