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    The Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church


    news article

    Upper New York Annual Conference boldly lives our call

    June 11, 2018 / By Stephen J. Hustedt / .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

    Editor’s Note: The following is a report that was sent to the General Conference, summarizing the Upper New York 2018 Annual Conference.

    Members of the Upper New York Annual Conference gathered for the ninth session May 30 – June 2 at the SRC Arena in Syracuse, NY.

    Upper New York Area Resident Bishop, Mark J. Webb officiated and led the Conference around the theme Boldly Living Our Call.

    “If we are to boldly live our call – if we are to be effective in the mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ – our identity must be grounded in the identity of Christ,” Bishop Webb said, during opening worship. “We must acknowledge Christ! We must acknowledge who Christ is, not based on who the world says he is or based on our ideas, our definitions, our understandings, but on who Jesus said he was in word and in action. We must confess Jesus as our Savior and Lord”

    Conference Teacher, Rev. Dr. L. Gregory Jones led two study sessions. The first focused on not going back to Egypt.

    “Each one of us has a ‘back to Egypt’ part of our souls,” Rev. Jones explained. “We get a glimpse of what God is calling us to do, and we get uncertain. And we say, ‘I don’t think so. Egypt sounds just fine to me.’ Oh how often we just settle for ‘going back to Egypt.’”

    Click here to view the first study session in full.

    The second study session focused on getting the past out of our eyes to attain an extraordinary future.

    “If we are going to boldly move into our call, if we are really going to be able to understand the summons coming from God, we need to recognize all that needs to be unlearned so we can change,” Rev. Jones said.

    Click here to view the second study session in full.

    The following recommendations were addressed through holy conferencing:

    The Conference Leadership Team Recommendation that every UNY congregation be required to use the VitalSigns Dashboard starting Sept. 1, 2018, supported as amended to strongly encouraged rather than required; click here for details.

    Board of Pension & Health Benefits recommendations one and two, both supported; click here for details

    Equitable Compensation recommendations one through five, all supported or supported as amended; click here for details

    Recommendation from the Accessibility Committee – Disability Awareness Weekend, supported

    UNY2018.SHRec.1 – Recommendation from the Social Holiness Team-Welcoming a Stranger, supported

    UNY2018.SHRec.2 – Recommendation from the Task Force on Peace with Justice in Palestine/Israel – Advocating for the Rights of Children Living Under Israeli Occupation, supported

    UNY2018.SHRec.3 – Recommendation from the Social Holiness Committee – Fossil Fuels, supported

    UNY2018.SHRec.4 – Recommendation from the Task Force for Immigration – Radical Hospitality, supported with combined amendments

    UNY2018.SHRec.5 – Recommendation from the Social Holiness Team – Specify Peace and Justice Coordinator, supported

    UNY2018.SHRec.6 – Recommendation from the Social Holiness Team – Safe and Free from Firearms, not supported

    Click here for more details on the recommendations.

    The following resolutions were also addressed through holy conferencing:

    UNYAC2018.1-on Guidelines for GC 2019 Delegation, not supported

    UNAYC2018.2-on Sexual Abuse, Harassment, and Misconduct, supported with amendment

    UNYAC2018.3- Methodist Heritage, Methodist Doctrine, Biblical Truths, and Sexual Ethics Going Forward, not supported

    UNYAC2018.4-Rules and Agenda Changes for Enhanced Order of Floor Discussion and Debate on Motions, Motion to refer to Rules Committee, supported

    UNYAC2018.5-Lead Resolution, supported with an amendment to test water as well

    UNYAC2018.6-Expansive Language, not supported

    UNYAC2018.7-Parental Leave, supported

    UNAC2018.8-Funding Ecumenical Inter-Faith Leaders, supported

    UNYAC2018.9-Location of Annual Conference, not supported

    UNY2018.10-Non-Binary Gender Resolution, supported

    UNY2018.11- Statistical Reporting, withdrawn

    Click here for detailed coverage of the resolutions that were discussed.

    The ninth session of the Upper New York Annual Conference concluded with the service of Ordination and Commissioning.

    Bishop Dennis V. Proctor from the North Eastern Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church was the preacher.

    There was one person commissioned for the work of deacon:

    Jessica Faye Glaser

    There were six people commissioned for the work of elder:

    Cheryl Ann Brown

    Raymond C. Gilman IV

    Linda Kay Haight

    Melissa Marie Killenberger McCarthy

    Hector D. Rivera

    Lisa Dawn Taylor

    There was one person received as an Associate Member:

    James Edward Barnes II

    There were three people ordained to the order of elder:

    Stephanie Jo Brown

    Kevin Duane Slough

    Paul D. Winkelman

    Bulleted Daily Notes and Daily Wrap videos for use in local church reporting are available here.

    Membership stands at 149,752, down 2% from the previous year.

    Worship attendance stands at 40,547, down 3%.

    Church school attendance stands at 10,440, up 11%.

    Professions and reaffirmations of faith for 2017 were 1,614, up 2% from 2016.

    Adults and young adults in small groups for 2017 were 17,074 down 7% from 2016.

    Worshippers engaged in mission for 2017 were 10,754, down 2% from 2016.


    With more than 168,000 members, the Upper New York Annual (Regional) Conference of The United Methodist Church comprises 865 local churches and 86 new faith communities in 12 districts, covering 48,000 square miles in 49 of the 62 counties in New York state. Our mission is to “live the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to be God’s love with our neighbors in all places."