2016 Annual Conference Session
The 2016 Great Plains Annual Conference Session was heldr June 1-4, at the Kansas Expocentre in Topeka, Kansas. The theme, "Serving Christ Near and Far," focused on the global connection of the United Methodist Church.
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- Wednesday, June 1 (Download PDF)
- Thursday, June 2 (Download PDF)
- Friday, June 3 (Download PDF)
- Saturday, June 4 (Download PDF)
Videos from the plenary sessions and worship services are available for watching and for downloads.
Wednesday, June 1
- Opening Worship and Baptism
- Opening Motions and State of the Conference Addresses
- Board of Ordained Ministries Report
- Recognition of the 20th Anniversary of the Order of Deacons (Download the PowerPoint presentation)
- Report from Baker University
- Greetings from Nigeria
- General Conference Delegation Report No. 1
Thursday, June 2
- Thursday Morning Worship
- Teaching Time with Retired Archbishop Elias Chacour
- Personnel Committee Report and Resolution on "Equal Pay for Equal Work"
- Council of Finance and Administration (CFA)
- Board of Pensions and Health Benefits
- Campus Ministries report
- Memorial Service
- General Conference Delegation Report No. 2
- Church Closings Resolutions
- Campus Ministries Report
- Epworth Village Report
- Ogden Friendship House of Hope Report (Download the PowerPoint presentation)
- Archives and History Report
- Episcopacy Committee Report
- United Methodist Foundations Reports (Download their PowerPoint presentations)
- Celebration of Bishop Jones' Ministry in the Great Plains (Download the photos and video shown during the session)
- Recognition of Retiring Clergy
- Bishop Jones' Blessing to Retiring Clergy
Friday, June 3
- Morning Worship Led by Our African Guests and Friends
- Teaching Time with George Howard of General Board of Global Ministries (Download his PowerPoint presentation)
- General Conference Delegation Report No. 3
- Resolution for Disability Awareness Sunday and Introduction of Resolution for Reconciliation
- Report from United Methodist Open Door
- Report from GraceMed
- Youth Request of Placement for "Super-Bish" Cutout of Bishop Jones
- Report from Congregational Excellence Team
- Report from Lydia Patterson Institute
- Camp Comeca Capital Campaign Celebration
- Resolution on Lay Equalization Plan
- Resolution on the Great Plains Poverty Initiative
- Proposal about Camp Lakeside
- Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference Presentation
- Report from Aldersgate Village
- Presentation to Zimbabwe Delegation
- Resolution on Creating a Culture of Call
- Resolution on Celebrating Laity
- Resolution on Opposition to the Death Penalty
- Clergy Excellence Report
- Connecting Council Report
- Service of Commissioning and Ordination
Saturday, June 4
- Morning Worship Lead by the Youth
- Resolution Seeking Reconciliation in the Rev. Cynthia Meyer Case
- Action on EmberHope
- Nominations Report
- Treasurer's and CFA Report
- CFA Narrative Report Approval
- CFA Audit Committee Report
- CFA Thank Yous and Introduction of the New Conference Treasurer
- Youth Submit Letter About Culture of Call Resolution
- Introduction of the Extended Cabinet
- Closing Motions, Worship and Reading of New Appointments
Check out the nearly 700 photos from the 2016 Great Plains Annual Conference session in our Flickr gallery.
Archbishop Elias Chacour
Retired Archbishop Elias Chacour was ordained a priest in the Melkite Catholic Church in 1965, and sent to the village of Ibillin in Galilee, not far from the village of Nazareth. In the early 1980s, he opened Mar Elias, a school where all local children could receive an education, regardless of religious affiliation. Approximately 4000 students now commute from seventy different villages to attend high school and university.
Father Chacour was Archbishop of Akko, Haifa, Nazareth and all of Galilee from 2006 to 2014. He is the author of two books about the experience of Palestinian people living in present-day Israel, "Blood Brothers" and "We Belong to the Land."
George Howard, deputy general secretary for Mission and Evangelism for the General Board of Global Ministries, was one of the creators of the partnership between the North Katanga Conference and the West Ohio Conference, and a founding leader of The United Methodist Church for All People, a multiracial, cross-class church in Columbus, Ohio.
The Mission and Evangelism Unit of GBGM recruits, places and supports missionaries, including young adults, from many lands and cultures in a variety of ministries. The unit also promotes and oversees new mission initiatives; cultivates ties with conferences and mission partners outside the United States; and links to the mission volunteer movement.
Artwork and Fund-raising
You have two opportunities to beautify your home, church or workplace while helping with two of our fund-raising efforts in the Great Plains Conference.
One opportunity involves buying a print of a Nativity scene prepared by artist Kansas artist Meredith Radke-Gannon (pictured at right). The artwork was presented to Bishop Scott Jones and his wife, Mary Lou Reece, as part of the celebration of the bishop’s ministry in the Great Plains during the recently completed annual conference session.
If you would like to purchase a print, fill out this form. Each 5-by-7 print costs $25. Each 8-by-10 print costs $35. Proceeds will go to help the renew Camp Comeca campaign.
Also during the annual conference session, the Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference (OIMC) presented the bishop with artwork depicting the first American Indian pastor evangelizing to other natives (shown below) by artist John Walkabout, a Cherokee from Oklahoma. To purchase a print, contact Courtney Fowler, conference lay leader, at firstname.lastname@example.org. The cost for each print is $125. Proceeds will go to the OIMC pastoral salaries endowment.
Our theme this year was "Serving Christ Near and Far." Check out our video that spotlights some of our ministries in our own back yards in Kansas and Nebraska, as close as our jurisdictional partners in Texas and Oklahoma, and as far away as the African continent. Also, we provide a little taste of spirituality with our #WeAreMore campaign.