Lay Delegate Report to New Light MCC’s BOD-General Conference # 25
UFMCC’S 25th General Conference was held in Chicago from July 1-5, 2013. In attendance were John and Colleen Foley, Dan Stewart and Rodney Ritenour, and myself. The results of voting at the business meeting are as follows:
Lay members elected to the Governing Board (GB): Kareem Murphy – 6 year term, Sara Jane Ramage – 6 year term, Gail Kissler – 3 year term. Clergy members elected to the GB: Rev. Dr. Robert Griffin – 6 year term, Rev. Dr. Gail Trissel – 6 year term.
The following reports were presented, discussed and passed by the required 2/3 of the Lay and the Clergy house: The Moderator’s Report, The GB’s Report which included the Strategic 5 Year Plan, and The International Task Force Report.
A motion for an Updated UFMCC’S Statement of Faith to be voted on at 2016 General Conference was made, seconded and passed.
A Moderator’s Search Committee was formed to start the process of vetting our next Moderator. In the next three years they will be identifying the needed skills and experience that the incoming Moderator will need. The Committee will be asking for input, reviewing the applications of potential candidates and will bring to General Conference 2016 two candidates for consideration.
The results of the voting for Proposed Bylaw Amendments follow:
GB Proposal #1: Procedure for Submitting Bylaw Proposals – passed as written after much heated discussion and several motions for changes that did not carry
GB and COE Proposal #1: Church Finances – passed with the following changes – the word “tithe” was replaced with the word “assessment,” the rate of assessments are to be 12% from the present through 2016, starting in 2017 it will decrease to 11.5% and stay at that percentage through 2018. Beginning 2019 the assessment rate will decrease to 11%. The GB was asked to enter into a covenant to keep to this schedule of decreasing assessments. They responded that they plan to keep this goal but are not able to promise due to the inability to see future needs that far ahead and the continued economic instability .
COE Proposal #1: Church membership – passed as written.
COE Proposal #2: Government, Organization and Officers – passed with the following change, aligned and associated organizations will have voice but no vote at General Conference.
All of the above passed with 2/3 majority of both houses.
While at GC I attended the following workshops, plenaries and discussion topics: Orientation to General Conference, Keynote and Opening Plenary: Leading with Faith in the Future, Business Forum, General Conference Business Meeting, Plenary: Believing and Becoming the Human Rights Church – How our Global Justice Institute is Shaping Our Global Ministry; beOpen – The Spiritual Practice of Reconciliation; Workshop – One Heart, One Mind; Plenary – Focus on the Future (presented by the COE); Plenary – A Holy Conversation: Believing in the Future of MCC Leadership as We Prepare for our Next Moderator, and Discussion Topic – The Gift of Presence.
At this General Conference I took the training course “Creating a Life That Matters – Train the Trainer.” I am now certified to teach this course with the condition that I stay in discussion with the trainers when teaching. I also completed the LEAD certificate program. I am currently discerning the course that my discipleship will follow. I thank NLMCC and the BOD and everyone for their support and encouragement during the previous 18 months. I will be eternally grateful. As always, it was a honor and privilege to represent NL at conference.
Bruce Brooks, Lay Delegate