We do not know what to expect at the 2019 Special Session of General Conference taking place Feb. 23-26 in St. Louis, MO and this uncertainty can be uncomfortable. Whatever the outcome of Special Session is, our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world will continue. There may be a new reality that we will have to acclimate to so that we can continue to fulfill our mission as United Methodists. To that end, Upper New York Area Resident Bishop Mark J. Webb will host an all-clergy gathering and six regional gatherings to process the new reality.
Bishop Webb said, "The purpose of these gatherings is for us to gather together after the Special Session of General Conference to worship together, pray together, understand the decisions or actions of the Special Session, and remember our individual and collective call to ministry and mission in the name of Jesus Christ."
It is expected for all clergy to attend the clergy gathering, which will be held at Rochester: Asbury First United Methodist Church on Saturday March 9 from 10 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. This location was chosen as opposed to a centrally located church because of the venue's ability to host the large number of clergy members who will be attending.
The gatherings open to both laity and clergy will take place on the following dates at the locations listed:
March 17 from 4-6 p.m. at Clarence UMC
March 18 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Potsdam UMC
March 19 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Christ Olean UMC
March 20 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Liverpool First UMC
March 21 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Shenendehowa UMC
March 24 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Chenango Bridge UMC
Plan now to attend one of these gatherings, and as we approach the Special Session of General Conference please keep the delegates to the Special Session, all those attending the Special Session, and the entire United Methodist church in your prayers.