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Updates on the many-splendored proposals to GC 2012. Call to Action/Structure Worldwide Nature Ministry Study Et cetera. Listen prayerfully…. Let’s first go through the entire presentation. Jot down your questions as we go. Clarify, explore, challenge.

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updates on the many splendored proposals to gc 2012

Updates on the many-splendored proposals to GC 2012

Call to Action/Structure

Worldwide Nature

Ministry Study

Et cetera

listen prayerfully
Listen prayerfully…
  • Let’s first go through the entire presentation.
  • Jot down your questions as we go.
  • Clarify, explore, challenge.
  • Add your wisdom and speak your truth during table discussion time.
call to action i o t
Call to Action/I.O.T.
  • Assigned by Connectional Table and Council of Bishops to research “state of the church.” Surveyed church leaders and rank-and-file members, and handed off findings to CT/COB.
  • The Interim Operations Team(2 bishops, several UM laity from corporate sector, one mega-church pastor) brought the recommendations to Connectional Table in July 2011.
major i o t recommendations

Restructure the general agencies using a 2-part process.

Adopt “vital indicators” for congregations and clergy.

Create a set-aside bishop to lead‘adaptive challenge.’

Major I.O.T. recommendations

adaptive challenge
‘Adaptive challenge’

“ To direct the flow of [most denominational] attention, energy, and resources … to increase the number of vital congregations effective in making discipleships of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.”

significant changes part 1
Significant Changes, Part 1
  • Disband all World Service-funded agency boards, and assign a single Board of Directors (15) to oversee ALL agencies.
  • A 45-member Advisory Board(“constituency” based), would meet once a year. Elects Board of Directors.
  • Creates centralized Center for Connectional Mission and Ministry, with an Executive General Secretary to supervise all other general secretaries and staffs.


The Women’s Division and the General Board of Global Ministries are bringing legislation to make Women’s Division a separate, self-funded agency.


As early as early 2014

Annual Conferences

other i o t proposals
Other I.O.T. proposals
  • Create a set-aside bishop, to guide “adaptive challenge.”
  • Commission on Christian Unity becomes part ofCouncil of Bishops.
  • Study and recommend changes United Methodist Publishing House and the Board of Pension and Health Benefits (2013).
  • Review and restructure system ofapportionmentsfor congregations; could include global dimension.
recap agency restructure
Recap: Agency Restructure
  • “Local-church centered.”
  • 11 agencies > 5 offices.
  • “Set-aside” bishop.
  • Centralized general program & administration.
  • Christian Unity becomes part of Council of Bishops.
  • Studies re: apportionments, UMPH and Pensions agencies.
this is not the only restructure proposal to be considered by general conference

This is not the only restructure proposal to be considered by General Conference

Annual conferences, caucuses, individuals also bringing proposals.

established by gc 2008
Established by GC 2008
  • To create a covenant of global relationship and define ‘our global nature.’
  • To develop a worldwide BOOK OF DISCIPLINE, applicable to all, and to allow other aspects of church polity to be culturally adaptable.
  • To recommend a global agency structure that would serve the entire church.

The three largest annual conference delegations to General Conference will be North Katanga(52), Cote D’Ivoire(40), and Nigeria (30).

U.S. conferences North Georgiaand Virginia have 26 delegates each.


>At least one annual conference has yet to ordain a single woman.>African clergywomen said Feb. 2, 2012 that sexual violence and gender discrimination are major hindrances in the congregations and conferences they serve.>Denomination spends millions adjudicating discrimination and sexual misconduct cases each year.>More than half of all UMC members are women, yet women account for only 19% of elders. >The world we serve is increasingly under 40, poor, other-than-English-speaking, female and nonwhite. Do our church structures and financial priorities reflect the mission field?

how do we insure gender inclusion
How do we insure gender inclusion?

Constitution does not specify ‘gender’ as protected class.

United Methodist Women is a U.S.-base agency.

Current WWN covenant does not list or require GCSRW nor Religion and Race as “global agencies.”

how do we work
How do we work…
  • To insure justice for ALL women?
  • To require ordination of women in global church?
  • To self-monitor for U.S. bias in our advocacy?
  • To ensure that we are still challenging racism, sexism and other bias in the U.S., too?
proposals from ministry study
Proposals from Ministry Study
  • Certified candidates ordained ‘provisional elders;’ eliminates ‘commissioning’ step.
  • Allow less-than-full-time appointments for elders in good standing.
  • Elders who will not receive appointments will be in ‘transitional leave’ status.
no guarantee of full time appointments for elders
No guarantee of full-time appointments for elders
  • Will instate more rigorous evaluation of clergy for effectiveness.
  • Will allow for easier transition (removal) for ineffective clergy.
  • How do we guard against racial/gender/age and other bias in the evaluation and review process?
church systems task force
Church Systems Task Force
  • Standards for clergy ‘fitness,’ starting with candidacy.
  • Improving clergy work/life balance, health.
  • ‘Exiting’ ineffective clergy with grace.
  • Task force to study seminarians’ debt.
  • Pension study.
apportionment study group
Apportionment Study Group
  • Asked to suggest new formula for apportionments or funding connectional ministries.
  • Previous proposal for a single ‘UM Fund’ for all churchwide funds did NOT receive Connectional Table approval.
current general agency realities
Current general agency REALITIES
  • Shrinking budgets.
  • Not structured, staffed to meet global concerns or even partner globally.
  • Perceived lack of direct connections with local churches.
  • Little ‘enforcement’ power with regard to inclusion, ethics, efficacy.
worldwide nature proposals
Worldwide Nature proposals
  • What have we heard from our sisters from Central Conferences?
  • Response to WWN Task Force?
  • What global ‘non-negotiables’ should be included in global Discipline to empower women and challenges sexism and misconduct?
  • Other considerations?
ministry study cs task force
Ministry Study—CS Task Force
  • Sufficient protections against sexism, racism, ageism, etc., if appointment system changes?
  • Healthy boundaries and ethical behavior adequately outlines as indicators of ‘fitness,’ ‘balance’?
  • Training, continuing education, monitoring, and intervention to prevent/address misconduct?

Let’s roll up our sleeves…

It’s all up in the air!

And, consider… 2. What entity in the church will advocate for women affectedby gender discrimination andsexual harassment?
Sexual ethics and misconduct intervention3. Where in our structure isthe priority of advocacy, prevention and justice-making in cases of allegedsexual misconduct by leaders?
The future is young, non-English-speaking, female4. How can local churches receive support and resourcesto engage a U.S. and world population that is under 30nonwhite, global, female?
for more info updates
For more info, updates

Ministry Study—www.gbhem.org

Worldwide Nature—


Church Systems Task Force—


Four Areas of Focus/I.O.T.