GC2016 Update: South Georgia Edition 

The United Methodist Church’s top legislative body is meeting at the Oregon Convention Center, the largest convention center in the Pacific Northwest, from May 10-20, 2016.

General Conference is the top policy-making body of The United Methodist Church which convenes once every four years.The conference can revise church law, as well as adopt resolutions on current moral, social, public policy and economic issues. It also approves plans and budgets for church-wide programs.

Friday, May 13 Highlights

General Conference Day 4

Ande Emmanuel, Eunice Iliya, Joyce Madanga and Habila Bala, delegates from Southern Nigeria Conference, react to the morning worship music at the 2016 United Methodist General Conference. Photo by Kathleen Barry, UMNS

Day 4 of the 2016 General Conference began with a morning of inspiring worship and a message by Bishop Sally Dyck of the Northern Illinois Conference. Delegates then heard the laity address followed by two major reports: Connectional Table and General Council on Finance and Administration. Delegates then spent the majority of the day focusing their work in legislative committees as they continue to discern and review petitions in the 13 committees. 

Connectional Table:
As part of the Connectional Table report, the Rev. Amy Valdez Barker, the top executive of the Connectional Table, emphasized the collaborative engagement of the Connectional Table and other church leadership bodies during the past four years. This includes work on more globally relevant Social Principles and a more globally applicable Book of Discipline that are expected to come before the 2020 General Conference. Valdez Barker also spoke of the Connectional Table’s work with general agencies to direct resources and provide tools to foster vitality among local churches. The percentage of “highly vital” U.S. congregations grew from 15 percent in 2010 to 23 percent in 2014. Read the transcript here || Watch the morning session

Moses Kumar, the top executive of the General Council on Finance and Administration, also reported good news in church giving as he presented details about the budget that the conference body will vote upon next week. In 2015, a record 26 U.S. conferences paid full apportionments to support the general church — the highest number in the 16 years that the church has kept digital records. United Methodists gave more than $130.6 million to general church funds, nearly 92 percent of the requested apportionments. Read the transcript here || Watch the morning session

Laity Address: Laity urged to share Jesus with the world

Scott Johnson of the Upper New York Conference helps deliver the laity address during the 2016 United Methodist General Conference in Portland, Ore. Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS

(UMNS) Lay members of The United Methodist Church admonished their peers who are delegates to General Conference to remember that they share in the responsibility of making disciples of Jesus Christ in the world. The May 13 Laity Address included lay leaders from the Upper New York, Virginia, Missouri, Tennessee, Zimbabwe and Great Plains conferences, with each sharing a sense of urgency for the people in local churches around the world to do more to share the love and mercy available to all through Jesus Christ. Read more || Watch the Laity Address here

What can churchgoers do together?

As part of the Connectional Table report, Hannah Foust talks about her efforts to raise money for water wells in Burkina Faso during a report on the work of the Connectional Table at 2016 United Methodist General Conference in Portland, Ore. Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS

(UMNS) Hannah Foust, as a United Methodist sixth-grader in Indiana, saw a video about the desperate need for clean water in Burkina Faso and knew God was calling her to help.

“When I first learned about Burkina Faso, I instantly felt a responsibility to help the children there, like I was their older sister,” she told General Conference delegates.

She set out to raise funds for clean water wells, and inspired other United Methodists to join the effort. Two years later, Foust and those she’s inspired have raised funds for 16 water wells. 

Foust, now 14, credits her United Methodist upbringing — and the United Methodist connection — with helping to make the work possible. Read more

Bishop Ough installed as president of the Council of Bishops

Bishop Bruce R. Ough (left) receives the gavel as incoming president of the United Methodist Council of Bishops from outgoing president Warner H. Brown, Jr. during the 2016 General Conference. Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS

In a May 12 ceremony, before episcopal leaders from around the globe, Dakotas-Minnesota Area Bishop Bruce R. Ough was formally installed as president of the Council of Bishops. Bishop Warner H. Brown Jr., outgoing president of the Council of Bishops, “passed the gavel” to Ough. The Council of Bishops provides spiritual leadership for The United Methodist Church, which is in mission in more than 135 countries. The council voted Ough into his new role during its meeting in Germany in May 2015. Read more 

Rev. Jim Cowart and Rev. Don Adams featured as Abingdon authors

Rev. Jim Cowart, left, and Rev. Don Adams, right, hold each other's book at the Cokesbury Bookstore at General Conference. Photo by Rev. Scott Hagan.

Rev. Jim Cowart, senior pastor at Harvest Church in Byron, and Rev. Don Adams, senior pastor at Albany First UMC, stand in the pop-up Cokesbury Bookstore at the Oregon Convention Center. Both are being featured as Abingdon authors during the 2016 General Conference. Rev. Cowart is holding Rev. Adams' book, “Top 10 United Methodist Beliefs,” and Rev. Adams is holding Jennifer and Rev. Cowart’s book, “Start This. Stop That.” Both books can be purchased at

UMW Day: Water and Witness

(UMNS) Nearly 150 years later, members of United Methodist Women “are living out the same commitments as our predecessors” for spiritual growth, service and advocacy for women, children and youth, says Harriett Olson, UMW’s top executive. On May 16, highlights of UMW Day will include a commissioning, a rally on water rights and a seven-minute presentation on the floor of General Conference. Read more

May 13 wrap-up: Laity Address, State of the Church Report

Read the UMNS wrap-up for May 13.

Join us in Prayer

Featured Delegate: Mr. Larry Price, member of Christ UMC in Albany

“Dear God, help each one of us from the South Georgia Delegation be found righteous and find favor in your eyes as your servant Noah who was blameless in his time. May we, like Noah in Genesis 6:8-9, walk with you, God, and be bold to stand on your Word. Today's world may seem to be wasting away, God, but with your guidance we can make a difference. May each rise up to vote and voice faithfulness in our committees to show our love for you, God, and not be influenced by the cultural pull of political correctness. Thank you, God, for helping us be faithful even in the face of opposition. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
-Larry Price



Schedule for Saturday, May 14

Streaming Schedule 
**Reminder: All times are Pacific Standard 

  • 8:00 A.M.: Worship
  • 8:45 A.M.: Young People's Address
  • 9:15 A.M.: Administrative Committee Reports
  • 9:25 A.M.: Consent Calendars/Announcements
  • 9:35 A.M.: Break (end of daily broadcast)

Full Schedule: This agenda shows the overall program of the 2016 General Conference in Portland, Oregon. View Schedule

Daily Christian Advocate 

The Daily Christian Advocate (DCA) is the official journal of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church. It serves as the record of those who have been elected to serve as delegate, the legislation submitted, and the decisions made by the General Conference.

May 13, 2016 - ?05-13 DCA (Vol. 4, No. 4)

May 12, 2016 05-12 DCA (Vol. 4, No. 3)

May 11, 2016 05-11 DCA (Vol. 4, No. 2)

May 10, 2016 05-10 DCA (Vol. 4, No. 1)

See the Advance Daily Christian Advocate, which contains all of the legislation submitted for consideration by the delegates.

Following General Conference

Daily Email Update Archives 

Thursday, May 12: Rule 44 does not pass

Wednesday, May 11: Episcopal address, more Rule 44 debate

Tuesday, May 10: General Conference Opens with Worship and Communion

Monday, May 9: One Day Until General Conference  

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