General Conference 2012 is a few days away, and that means attention to last-minute details, as well as lobbying on key issues. Our story looks at the home stretch of the lead-up to the big event in Tampa, Fla., and previews the Episcopal Address by Bishop Peter Weaver.
At General Conference 2012, Bishop Larry Goodpaster will end his term as president of the Council of Bishops. UMR columnist Donald Haynes interviewed him for his reflections on the job and realities facing the UMC.
Nearly 30 UMC leaders involved in the Call to Action effort gathered in Chicago recently for two days of meetings on how to renew the denomination. Consensus: the UMC culture must change. United Methodist News Service has the story.
Reporter columnist Missy Buchanan worked with ABC TV’s Robin Roberts and her mother, Lucimarian Roberts, on the new book My Story, My Song. It’s published by the UMC’s Upper Room Books. Staff writer Mary Jacobs has a Q&A with Ms. Buchanan about how the project came to be.
In commentaries, the Rev. Jim Harnish of Hyde Park UMC in Tampa expresses hope that General Conference delegates meeting in his city will act boldly and shake up the denominational structure. The Rev. Andrew Thompson argues that Methodism is indeed endowed with strong doctrine, and that Methodists need to know and act on it. And retired Bishop Woodie W. White shares tips for obtaining civility in debate and discussion, and recommends them to General Conference delegates.
There’s plenty more in this edition, including C. Michael Hawn’s History of Hymns column, about “Christ Jesus Lay in Death’s Strong Bands,” and a review of the smash hit film The Hunger Games by the Rev. Mike Baughman.
We’ll be in Tampa from the beginning to end of General Conference (April 24-May 4), so please look to us for news, features and commentaries.
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Thanks, as always, for keeping the faith with us.
Sam Hodges, managing editor