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The Call

Vol. E17, Number 11

updated: June 9, 2017

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AC gives 4 weeks vacation to clergy, celebrates mission kits valued at $211,112 for Africa

<p>The Rev. Stephen DeFur (second from right) receives the Denman Evangelism Award.</p>

The Rev. Stephen DeFur (second from right) receives the Denman Evangelism Award.

LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C. (June 13, 2017) -- The Monday session of Holston Annual Conference concluded with decisions on three resolutions and celebration of three Denman Evangelism Award winners as well as unfinished business.

A resolution calling for a four-week vacation policy for ministers was approved.

A resolution calling for the church to work to eliminate racism and advocate against immigration policies that exclude refugees “on the basis of their religion or national origin” was approved.

A resolution calling for a moratorium on the practice of online communion was approved.

The Denman Evangelism Award was presented to Erin Elizabeth Bowman (youth), Mt. Olivet UMC, Galax, Va.; Pasty Dalton (lay), Kodak UMC, Kodak, Tenn.; and the Rev. Stephen DeFur (clergy), Cokesbury UMC, Knoxille, Tenn.

An amendment to the Annual Conference agenda was adopted, resulting in a Tuesday 3:30 p.m. period for members to bring “new business” to Stuart Auditorium. (Find out more.)

Bishop Dindy Taylor blessed 8,344 Hands-on Mission Kits valued at a total of $211,112 for Zimbabwe and Liberia. The food, school, and health supplies were collected by churches in recent weeks and are on the way to the coast for shipping to Africa. (See totals collected, listed by district.)

Taylor also delivered her State of the Church report. The Council of Bishops has called a special General Conference session Feb. 23-26, 2019 in St. Louis, Mo., she said. At that time, the General Conference will hear and act on a report from the “Commission on a Way Forward” during that session. The denomination has designated Sept. 24-30, 2017, for Holston Conference to pray for the special session.

Del Holley, conference lay leader, shared the story of Samuel and Eli during his Lay Leader Report. (See report.)

Because other actions exceeded their expected time, the final Stategy Team presentation and the vote on the Comprehensive Strategic Plan was delayed until today. See Tuesday’s revised schedule.

See also: Witness Ministry Team video and photos from Monday session, below.