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Latest News from General Conference 2012

The United Methodist Reporter will have reporting staff on hand to bring you the latest news and information from the floor of this historic event.

Sibling delegates share hopes for GC 2012

Two General Conference delegates from the Arkansas Conference—the Rev. John P. Miles Jr. and the Rev. Rebekah “Beka” Miles—are siblings with sometimes widely divergent views. But they and other delegates are being encouraged to use holy conferencing, or holy conversation, to set “a tone for respectful dialogue and relationship building.” The goal, explained Minnesota Area […]

Petition drive seeks support for major reforms

Call it pushback to the pushback. With General Conference looming, backers of the first and most aggressive restructuring plan for general agencies of the UMC have mounted an online petition drive. They want to show that, despite noisy opposition and the emergence of alternative proposals, they have broad support from across the denomination. In under […]

Robert’s Rules of Order aren’t best guide for GC

We Methodists are about to head to Tampa for our big quadrennial denominational meeting called General Conference. Like some beached whale, our church struggles to survive, and the underbelly frankly isn’t very pretty. I like to be hopeful that the creature can live, but worry that the way we do what we do at such […]

GC 2012 book series aims to prepare delegates

Before delegates arrive in Tampa, Fla., for the 2012 General Conference this April, Abingdon Press would like them to do a little homework. And it’s a reading assignment. The United Methodist Publishing House has issued five new books, available online and in print, called the “Adaptive Leadership Series.” Each book offers an analysis of where […]

Leadership Institute Fellows watch denomination in action

TAMPA, Fla.—A small group of young people—inquisitive, well-educated and diverse—will carefully watch the proceedings during the 2012 United Methodist General Conference. These “watchers” are learning how the United Methodist Church really works. During a pre-conference news briefing Jan. 19-21, the Bishop Melvin G. Talbert Leadership Institute Fellows got a taste of what to expect when […]

We need ‘call to integrity’ more than Call to Action

Following the endless conversations about “what comes next?” in the United Methodist Church, it becomes more and more apparent that most of the suggestions, reports and recommendations made thus far are all designed for just one purpose: to avoid the hard work that actually must happen. In my humble opinion—one I have espoused now since […]

Pursuing new history between UM Church, indigenous peoples

By Tex Sample John Wesley understood quite clearly the atrocities carried out by Europeans against Native Americans. In his sermon, “A Caution Against Bigotry,” he wrote: “Even cruelty and bloodshed, how little have the Christians come behind them! And not the Spaniards or the Portuguese alone, butchering thousands in South America: not the Dutch only […]

Why numbers won’t motivate us

By Mary Jo Dahlberg I am a layperson, served as Lay Leader for the Minnesota Annual Conference for two quadrenniums, elected to the General Board of Discipleship for two quadrenniums, and now elected a General Conference delegate for the third time. I am a lifelong Methodist/United Methodist and have served the Church, in various positions […]

Don’t fight decline, embrace ‘smart decline’

I noticed it over the past several years as I traveled to the Phoenix area to spend a few days with my father and other family members. Every time we visited we’d play a new golf course in a brand new town that seemed to spring up overnight. The infrastructure was there for huge planned […]