In just a few weeks, United Methodist Clergy and Lay delegates from all over the world will take over Tampa, Florida for General Conference 2012 (#gc2012 for those of you following along on Twitter). For those of you not familiar with The United Methodist leadership structure- General Conference happens every four years and is the place where legislation and policy are made for the churches and people who make up the denomination. Each conference (I’m in the Peninsula-Delaware Conference), holds an Annual Conference every year (think Annual Business Meeting)- and of course there are Jurisdictional Conferences where we elect Bishops and so forth.
General Conference is the place where changes to our United Methodist Book of Discipline can be made- and every four years brings the opportunity for debate, both big and small, about the direction of The United Methodist Church.
After a brief discussion on Twitter with Matt Lipan (@mattlipan on Twitter, or you can read his blog here), we both are hoping that the UMC moves in a direction of change for the better. The question I posed is “What does change for the better look like for the UMC?” The answer to this question can be as diverse as the people who make up The United Methodist Church. In the coming days and weeks, I’ll be doing a series of post (and interacting with a few other people) about what changes we’d like to see in the UMC. While I don’t profess to be an expert in any of these areas, my post will include, but not limited to…
- The Global Nature of The United Methodist Church- restructuring is on the table in 2012 and it has wide reaching implications for our denomination and who exactly are “United Methodist.”
- Are we really “making disciples for the transformation of the world?”
- Generation Lost? Where are the young adults in The UMC?
- Can we regain our missional DNA?