Today at annual conference we:
– Heard from Terry Bradfield (Conference Member) from Wesley Seminary.
– Passed a resolution encouraging the conference to pray for the Commission on A Way Forward and for Our General Conference Delegation. The resolution requests that the delegation hold listening events within each district.October 1 – 7 is the West Virginia Conference designated
– October 1 – 7 is the West Virginia Conference designated week of prayer for the Commission on the Way Forward.
– George Webb was elected as the new Conference Stewardship Coordinator; Stephon Reed was announced as WVAC Conference approved evangelist.
– 2319 new professions of faith were celebrated (with more being added daily as churches report confirmations and new member reception.) New goal of 2400+. This represents 2400 Professions of Faith and 2400 new people in an intentional discipleship formation experience.
– Recognized Rev. Lawrence Sherwood, the longest serving conference member, who is celebrating the 70th year of his ordination as deacon (1947). Rev. Sherwood’s daughter, Rev. Martha Ognibene is the superintendent of the Northern District.
– Approved churches that have been closed and discontinued and two church mergers
– Lauren Shanholtzer (Chair of CCYM) announced the upcoming youth events: Rally on the Mountain and Fall Workshop. During the presentation, a collection was taken for YSF. An additional $2,279 was collected to add to the Ice Cream Social collection of $977.43 for a total of $3,256.43.
– Ivan Chetembe, a recent graduate of Living Hope High School in Kenya, addressed the conference.
– Circles of Grace discussed experiences of diversity and white privilege.
– Rev. Dr. Barry Ball, husband of Bishop Sandra Steiner Ball, addressed the conference with a challenge about the children who are victims of addiction.
– Recognized outgoing superintendents, Greg Hayes and his wife, Diane, and Rick DeQuasie and his wife, Susie, who are retiring; retiring assistant to the Bishop, J.F. Lacaria and his wife, Lyn; and welcomed new superintendents, Joe Hill (Little Kanawha District) and Okey Harless (Western District). Also recognized Ken Krimmel who will add Assistant to the Bishop to his portfolio of Director of Connectional Ministries.
– Approved a budget of $12,363,245 which is an increase of $84,256 or .69% from the 2017 budget
– The Conference gave the House of the Carpenter permission to conduct a one time, by letter, conference-wide appeal to local churches of the Annual Conference for support of the construction of a youth center on Wheeling Island.
– Referred to CFA a petition to eliminate any increase to Connectional Ministries budget if there is no statistical increase in the number of pledges and identified givers.
– Celebrated Cash total for Celebration of Ministry Events: $117,692.87
Presented Denman Awards for Evangelism:
Clergy: Gary Nelson, pastor of Cross Lanes UMC.
Bob Cole, retired pastor, Wesleyan District
Lay: Wayne Worth, UMT Clarksburg
One Matters Awards:
Sam Rodriguez from General Board of Discipleship presented four One Matters Awards.
1. Shay’s Chapel UMC (Howesville Charge, MonValley District. DeLisa Riley, assigned supply of the charge).
2. Highland Ave. UMC, Fairmont, MonValley District. Pastor Micah Blanks.
3. Calvary / Mount Clare Charge, Clarksburg, Wesleyan District; Pastor Brian Plum
– Awards were presented to the United Methodist Men for payment of 100% of the Connectional apportionments.
– Bishop’s Award for Scouting was presented to Girl Scout Troop 51209 from St. Luke UMC, Craigsville
Conference 2018 will be June 7 – 10, 2018, at West Virginia Wesleyan College