General Conference Follow Up 2019
May 2, 2019
There have been some recent publications we want to provide for your information and to make you aware of upcoming discussions.
All may be found by visiting the VA UMC website: https://www.vaumc.org/GC2019
Bishop Pete Weaver has written a letter and invitation for district meeting/discussions. The Rappahannock River District meeting will be Saturday, May 11 at 2:00 at Wright's Chapel UMC.
We encourage reading this news source for the ongoing progress and discussion by the United Methodist Church. We will continue to update this site with information as we receive it. Please continue to pray for the church leadership and all involved in this discussion and process.
Bishop Sharma Lewis will hold an address titled "State of the Church: Where do we go from here?" on Monday, March 4 at 10:00 - 11:30 am. The event will be livestreamed at www.livestream.com/vaumc/stateofthechurch.
Rev. Dr. Ted Smith will be holding Post General Conference meetings to give updates on what happened. Please feel free to attend one that is most convenient to you. February 28 at Tabernacle UMC, 7:00 pm; March 2 Trinity Catlett UMC, 10:00 am; or March 2 Warsaw UMC at 4:00 pm.
Resources about the special session and work of the Commission on a Way Forward are available on the Virginia Conference website at https://www.vaumc.org/GC2019
The live stream link for the conference will be available during the conference: http://www.umc.org/who-we-are/general-conference-2019-live-video-stream-english
We have created a Signup Genius for each day of General Conference, to encourage people to commit to certain times of prayer. Please click on the link for the day you would like to sign up and share your commitment with others.
FEBRUARY 10, 2019
Prayer Theme: Be Still
Together, we enter this 38th week of the Council of Bishops call to Pray Our Way Forward. There is one more full week before the February 23-26, 2019 special session of the General Conference begins in St. Louis.
You will find the names of the active and retired Bishops of The United Methodist Church through the link below. They are will arrive early to this important event. Please join us in prayer and fasting for them—that they may be filled with the Holy Spirit and reflect Jesus in their conduct, their attitudes, and their guidance for the work of the General Conference.
For 12 million United Methodists around the world, prayer is the most significant and positive spiritual thing we can do. Thank you for participating in this global prayer initiative.
Click here for the list of delegates to pray for this week.
A Note from our Lead Pastor on the Upcoming Workshops on The Way Forward/2019 UMC General Conference
As I settled in this summer, I began to get questions from some of our leaders and members on my plan to prepare our church for the February 2019 Special General Conference of the United Methodist Church to address issues of human sexuality. The tension within the UMC, as well as in many other denominations, is related to conflicting opinions about the ordination of homosexual individuals and about the marriage of same-sex couples. There has been debate within our church since prior to the 1972 General Conference relating to these issues, so there is long-standing conflict. The upcoming General Conference is unique, however, because it is convening at the request of our bishops to address these issues solely. Given the context of this General Conference, I felt called to attempt to equip our membership to understand what is before us as a denomination. Therefore, [in November, 2018] I invited the Rev. Dr. Mochel Morris to conduct two sessions of the same workshop to allow for us to better understand “The Way Forward.” The purpose of these sessions was educational in nature so that we could discern alongside other United Methodists at this juncture and seek God’s Spirit as we move forward. One important point to remember is that no one is certain what will happen with this coming General Conference, and if action is taken, it will be a long process toward implementation of any changes. With all this in mind, I ask that you please join me in prayer for the UMC that we remain focused on our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ.
In Christ, Pastor Gina
The Council of Bishops has called a Special Session of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church to be held February 23-26, 2019 in St. Louis, Missouri. The purpose will be to act on a report from the Council of Bishops based on the recommendations of the Commission on a Way Forward. The 32-member Commission was appointed to examine paragraphs in The Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and exploring options to strengthen the unity of the church.
This includes the archived livestream from the September 26 Q&A session featuring Bishop Sharma Lewis, the Rev. Tom Berlin, and Ms. Martha Stokes. The direct link is https://livestream.com/VAUMC/COWFQA
Links to the three proposed plans can be found at https://www.vaumc.org/document.doc?id=3289