2010 Annual Conference at Lakeside, OHJune 7-10, 2010

Wednesday, June 10 News

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Written by John Henderson, West Ohio Communications Intern from Otterbein College

Photography by Benjamin Derkin

LAKESIDE, OHIO:  Wednesday morning's Praise and Worship Service offered an inspiring message by Bishop Raul Garcia.   Following were the Connectional Ministries Report, Archives & History Report, and Black College Fund Report.  There was recognition of the Upper Room 75th anniversary during Wednesday morning’s session.  Those at the session received special editions of the Upper Room that contained eight daily devotionals from eight decades. 

During the Connectional Ministries Report, George Howard, director, was recognized for his years of service to the conference. George presented a report focusing on the leadership development efforts of Connectional Ministries.

Bishop Ough then introduced Bishop John Hopkins of the East Ohio Conference.  Bishop Ough expressed his appreciation for Bishop Hopkins and their shared ministry. Bishop Hopkins began by joking with Bishop Ough about the Rethink Rock dance and recognized the win by the bishop and cabinet in the Bishop’s Challenge.  Hopkins thanked the West Ohio Conference for the Council of Bishops meeting held at the beginning of May in Columbus.  He said it was one of the best yet with the focus of Engaging in Ministry With the Poor.  With thanks, Hopkins said, “continue to do what you are doing.”

Members discussed and passed two resolutions during this Wednesday morning session.

  •  Recommendation #4 Board of Pension and Health Benefits (Passed as Amended*)
  •  Recommendation #5 Resolution to Support Fair Trade (Passed)

The second bobble head auction raised a total $1,950.  Lou Seipel, with the help of Office of Ministry Director and Annual Conference Auctioneer Wade Giffin, suggested a match of her $650 and ended up getting three. 

Rock Jones, president of Ohio Wesleyan University, addressed the audience detailing Ohio Wesleyan’s history of work in global problems and missions.  “We understand that the world is our parish,” said Jones.      

The West Ohio Conference reconvened in Hoover Auditorium for an afternoon Order of the Day session of recognitions on Wednesday.  The bishop welcomed everyone back for the session and as with all others, began directing attention to the screens for another Ministry Moment video.  

A presentation was given on the Ohio Council of Churches and the work being done through the covenant built between the 16 church bodies across the state. 

George Howard, Director of Connectional Ministries for the conference, led the presentation of the Harry Denman Evangelism Awards.  The Foundation of Evangelism has a vision to raise up generations of leaders who are passionate about evangelism.  There were three different awards presented for a commitment to the world by evangelism.   

  •  Youth Award:  Tabitha McCloud
  •  Clergy Award: Rev. Aaron Brown
  •  Laity Award: Esther Brown

Bishop Ough reminded everyone that, “The Foundation for Evangelism is not just out there.  It is us.”  

The Board of Ordained Ministry was recognized and those being ordained joined Ough on stage to respond to questions asked by the bishop. The conference internship program provides college students an opportunity to explore a calling in their lives.  Those interns in attendance also took the stage to be recognized.

The third and final bobble head auction wrapped up the session and brought in the most money combining multiple buyers making a total of $6,600.

Friends, family, and members of the West Ohio Conference met for the Celebration of Life & Ministry Service in the afternoon to celebrate commitments of leadership in ministry for the church and to honor those who have given much of their lives to leadership in the United Methodist Church.

Those being ordained filed in with their families in a triumphant procession.  While it was a time to receive and celebrate new leadership and affirm answers to calls into lives of ministry, it was also a time for remembrance of leaders no longer with us physically. 

After all joined in opening liturgy, the lives of West Ohio clergy and spouses who have died within the past year were honored.  After the reading of each name, a bell rang out across the room for that life victorious.  The congregation celebrated the memories of nearly 30 clergy members and 30 spouses of clergy in this service.  Candles were lit on the stage in remembrance of laity from each district and children of clergy who have died within the past year.

The service came with time to celebrate the hundreds of years of combined service by the 32 clergy members entering retirement in the West Ohio Conference.  The bishop called for the retirees to continue to be true to their calling and confident in God’s continuous love and power.   

“Your gift from God was an invitation to share in some of the most tender moments of our lives.  You were called to witness the miracles of everyday life.  Together we agreed and disagreed, laughed and cried.  Together, we were the church.”

Bishop Ough introduced Bishop Callon Holloway of the Southern Ohio Synod Evangelical Lutheran Church in America who spoke on the importance of the Lutheran Church being in full communion with the United Methodist Church.  Holloway said, “We are to come together as people of the word going to the people of the world.”  He said that he looks forward to the partnership between the two denominations.

Bishop Ough delievered the sermon titled, “Giving Out of Your Poverty.”  Ough said that when the poor give, they are giving out of poverty, but when the wealthy give, they give out of abundance.  He said that we must ask the question, “Are we poor enough to be generous?”  He asked the ordinands and congregation if they were willing to put themselves at risk for the sake of others.  Jesus wants us to place our lives in the hands of good and to seek complete trust in him.  He asked, “Are you ready to give your lives out of such poverty?”

Bishop Ough presented the candidates for commissioning, ordination, and affirmation leading them in the General Examination.  The bishops commissioned 2 provisional deacon candidates and 13 provisional elder candidates.  Twenty candidates were ordained as elders and one as a deacon.       

*Recommendation #4 passed as amended:  added on line 40 at the end, "It is also strongly encouraged that local congregations provide funding for student health care for their student pastor(s) if said student health care costs are not covered by living stipends, grants, or scholarships, and also if said student pastor(s) is/are not a beneficiary of spousal or parental health insurance coverage."


If you have any questions regarding Annual Conference, email Tim McCoy, Coordinator of Annual Conference or call 1.800.437.0028 ext. 227.