WNCC E-News: Special Edition
The Commission on the General Conference announced yesterday the further postponement of General Conference until 2024 due to pandemic and government-related obstacles.
"We engaged in a fair, thorough, integrity-filled discussion of the alternatives," said Commission Chairperson Kim Simpson. "The visa issue is a reality that is simply outside our control as we seek to achieve a reasonable threshold of delegate presence and participation. Ultimately our decision reflects the hope that 2024 will afford greater opportunity for global travel and a higher degree of protection for the health and safety of delegates and attendees."
This special edition of E-News includes a pastoral response to this news from WNCC Resident Bishop Ken Carter, a statement from Council of Bishops President Cynthia Fierro Harvey, the full announcement from the Commission on the General Conference, and a vision of the future for United Methodists in Western NC from our General and Jurisdictional conference delegates.
|Bishop Carter’s Pastoral Response to the General Conference Announcement
"We learned yesterday of the postponement of the General Conference of the United Methodist Church until 2024. The decision was made with deliberation by the Commission on the General Conference, which is a global body composed of laity and clergy. I note here that bishops do not serve as voting members of the commission.
This postponement, a response to the global pandemic and consequent complexities related to global health and the supply chain of visas allowing for travel, was particularly shaped by the presence of delegates to the General Conference who live in forty nations. For this reason, it is not comparable to a large cultural or sporting event that might happen in the United States. We are a global church.
There are understandable disappointments related to the postponement of the General Conference. While some will choose to blame or disparage others for this decision, I urge us to take a higher ground. I write pastorally, with genuine respect and love for all of our people, and with a focus on a particular question:
How will we live and serve together in the interim?"
Read Bishop Carter's full pastoral response here.