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Service of Ordination and Commissioning
The New England Conference welcomed its largest class of new clergy “in living memory” ordaining 13 elders, commissioning nine elders and two deacons. Bishop Sudarshana Devadhar commended the new clergy for their willingness to help steer the ship of a church in exile. Read more
As we do each year, the Annual Conference honored the clergy and spouses who have passed away in the last year. This year’s Guest Preacher the Rev. Dr. Elaine Heath delivered the sermon. Read more
Listen to excerpts from Bible study with guest preacher the Rev. Dr. Elaine Heath. Take a listen
Clergy elected three NEJ delegates:
Sandra Bonnette Kim
Clergy elected one NEJ alternate
Ralph Oduor as General Conference delegate
Laity elected two NEJ delegates
Ana Maria Rodriguez Alphonso
The slate proposed by the Committee on Leadership/Nominations, with updates from the committee, was approved by the body. (RS-19-218).
The nominees the United Methodist Foundation of New England Board of Directors were also approved.
The Consent Calendar
– with the removal of RS – 19 – 101 – NEW ENGLAND CONFERENCE MINIMUM CASH SALARY RESOLUTION – was approved. Find the Consent Calendar in the Pre-Conference Materials
RS – 19 – 108 – SPECIAL GRANTS
– approved. This resolution had been on the Consent Calendar, and was removed to make an editorial change: A grant for Evelyn Roberts, a clergy spouse who died March 23, 2019, was removed.
The following resolutions to close churches were approved by the Annual Conference. A prayer, written by Vermont District Superintendent Jill Colley Robinson, was read following the approval of the resolutions. Read the prayer
19-201 TO CLOSE THE FIRST UMC, PEABODY, MA
19-202 TO CLOSE MOODUS UMC MOODUS, CT
19-203 TO CLOSE GREENE UMC, GREENE (COVENTRY), RI
19-204 TO CLOSE DAMARISCOTTA UMC DAMARISCOTTA, ME
19-205 TO CLOSE THE EAST HAVERHILL UMC, PIKE, NEW HAMPSHIRE
19-206 TO CLOSE THE EAST MONKTON UMC, MONKTON, VT
19-207 TO CLOSE GRACE UNITED METHODIST, BANGOR, ME
19-219 TO CLOSE WEYMOUTH UMC, WEYMOUTH, MA
19-213 GATHERING THE NORTHEASTERN JURISDICTION OF THE UMC – approved
19-214 MAINTAINING CONFERENCE RESERVE FUNDS – approved
19-304 PETITION ON REQUIREMENT OF THE TRUST CLAUSE IN THE CASE OF SUCCESSOR ENTITIES – withdrawn by the maker
Conference chancellor William Hewig offered comment on the petition saying it was too vague with regard to the disposition of the properties. Rev. Becca Girrell agreed to withdraw the petition and work with the chancellor and her co-signers to perfect it and submit it to General Conference as an individual/s rather than on behalf of the Annual Conference.
Realignment of Districts
19-209 DESIGNATION OF NUMBER OF DISTRICTS)
In the plenary session that took place after the Service of Ordination and Commissioning, the Annual Conference approved the resolution to reduce the number of districts from nine to seven.
The 2020 proposed budget was adopted
2020 Budget as adopted
Bishop Sudarshana Devadhar asked this year’s ordinands the historical questions. In preface, the bishop said: “When John Wesley wrote and the church adopted the historical questions, they could not have imagined the world in which we are asking them today. Even we find difficulty in imagining their lives. So we all have to engage in re-imagining the questions for our 21st Century context and culture.
State of the Conference report
Rev. Rene Perez, superintendent of the Central MA District and Dean of the Cabinet, delivered the annual report on the State of the Conference on behalf of his colleagues. He called on all United Methodists in New England to “be God’s microphone.” Read more
Rev. Perez has served eight years on the Cabinet, the maximum allowed, and has been appointed to Trinity UMC in Springfield, MA, as of July 1. Bishop Devadhar announced that the Rev. Jill Colley Robinson, Vermont District Superintendent, will take over as Dean of the Cabinet beginning July 1.
Once again, Conference Statistician Joy Mueller tested members’ knowledge of the New England Conference based on the 2018 statistics. Mueller also invited members to pose the questions that are on their minds. Some of those questions (and the answers) may appear in the weekly e-newsletter. The 10-question quiz is available here.
See how you do …