A House Divided

Reporting from Portland


By Rachael Sumner, Lay Delegate: I have received texts and Facebook messages all day asking how General Conference is going and what the mood and attitude is like out here today. I'll be honest. It's been a tough day. This morning Bishop Ough made a statement on behalf of the Council of Bishops regarding the Church's division over human sexuality. If you didn't see it, you can watch it here.

Recent Reflections

Reporting from Portland


Janet Earls, Lay Delegate: Thursday I felt energized and excited. Friday started out good. After talking with our other delegates, it seems after lunch we all lost steam, some had headaches. Our subcommittee in Local Church did great collaborative work so the afternoon was adopting or rejecting the 2 subcommittees work on petitions. While we have had some minor struggles our committee is good. Glad I am here.

Does It Matter?

Reporting from Portland


By Rachael Sumner, Lay Delegate: I am serving on the General Administration Legislative Committee. A large part of what my sub-committee is dealing with is Plan UMC Revised. For those that don’t know, Plan UMC was a plan to restructure agencies within the United Methodist Church. It was adopted at the 2012 General Conference and then ruled unconstitutional afterward by the Judicial Council.

Fear Not

Reporting from Portland


By Alex Shanks, Clergy Delegate: As I was cleaning out my files in preparation for our move this summer, I found a devotion I gave 16 years ago to the 2000 delegation to the General Conference. I was a student at Florida Southern at the time, serving as a lay delegate. The focus of the devotion was on the passage from 2 Timothy 1:7: "God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love and self-discipline." Looking back at the dated devotion, I again reflected on the question I...

Preparing for General Conference

Reporting from Portland


By Rachael Sumner, Lay Delegate: In a few weeks, The United Methodist Church will hold its General Conference in Portland, Oregon. General Conference convenes every 4 years and United Methodists come from all over the world to worship together, pray together and discern together the direction God would have our denomination go. That is the hope anyway, that when we come together as a body, we will listen for the Holy Spirit to guide our thoughts and hearts into action and polity that is of God. ...

Thoughts about the 2016 General Conference

The Bishop's Blog Reporting from Portland


“So what do you think will happen at the General Conference?” I am often asked that question these days. Underneath the question there are a variety of unspoken emotions: fear, anxiety, sadness, anticipation, excitement. It is a question that is voiced this year, and perhaps this year there is more urgency, but it is one we have asked for years.

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