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General Conference 2020(24) Resource Page

With voting delegates from across the globe, The United Methodist Church will gather April 23 – May 3, 2024, in Charlotte, North Carolina, for its delayed 2020 General Conference. The theme is “Be Still and Know.” Major portions of the event will be live-streamed via United Methodist Communications. 

Together, delegates will consider revisions to the denomination’s laws and structure, adopt resolutions on current moral, social, and economic issues, and set a budget for missional priorities and programming. As the top policymaking body of the global United Methodist Church, General Conference is the only entity that speaks for the denomination.

This year’s General Conference will seat 862 voting delegates, 55.9% from the U.S., 32% from Africa, 6% from the Philippines, 4.6% from Europe and the remainder from concordat churches that have close ties to The United Methodist Church. Delegates will serve on 12 committees and consider 1,099 resolutions – 352 submitted during the delay – during the first week of the two-week session.

A lot has changed since the last regular session of General Conference in 2016 and the disruptive Special Session held in 2019. 

Some important issues on the agenda this year include regionalization legislation which would de-center the United States, the removal of harmful language which diminishes the humanity of our LGBTQ+ siblings, and adopting a revised Social Principles. Delegates will also work to approve a leaner budget that honors the financial impact of church disaffiliations and reflects ministry priorities that will move us forward together. They may also consider adopting a theological statement on the United Methodist understanding of church titled “Sent in Love.”

The Pacific Northwest Conference will have two voting delegates and two reserves at the General Conference, with other delegation members traveling in support. They will work collaboratively and strategically with other delegates in the Greater Northwest Area and across the Western Jurisdiction.

Learning more about General Conference 2020(24) priorities

US delegates name General Conference goals

A group of more than 270 U.S. delegates has publicly endorsed three legislative proposals as General Conference approaches and hope remains for a more productive gathering that 2019. They are championing what they call “the three R’s”: regionalization, the Revised Social Principles and the removal of exclusionary language against LGBTQ people. 

Ask The UMC: What is regionalization?

If you are in or around UMC leadership circles, you may have heard the word “regionalization” more frequently in recent months. In this series, Ask The UMC explores the ways that regionalization already exists for central conferences and the opportunities it gives them, as well as the implications of enabling regionalization in the United States.

Revised Social Principles for General Conference 2024

First adopted by the 1972 General Conference, the Social Principles serve as The United Methodist Church’s official summary of stated convictions on social issues of the day. Delegates to General Conference will consider a significant revision of the Social Principles. The new version is available to review on the General Board of Church and Society website.

Video recaps church homosexuality debate

US delegates to General Conference have identified three priorities for when they meet in Charlotte, North Carolina. Removing the exclusionary policies against LGBTQ people added in 1972 is one of those priorities. An analysis of the history of this struggle published by UMNews in 2016 (and updated in 2022) provides a helpful overview.

What’s New for GC 2024 Part 1: The Budget

Delegates to General Conference will be presented with a proposed budget of about $346.7 million to fund denomination-wide ministries for the next four years, representing a nearly 43% reduction from the previous  budget. In Part 1 of a series looking at what’s new at General Conference, the Rev. Taylor W. Burton Edwards analyzes the situation. 

What to know about General Conference proposals

Legislation coming before The United Methodist Church’s top policymaking body deals with matters as varied as the denomination’s international structure, social teachings, ecumenical relations and budget. An online orientation gave a preview of some of the major proposals coming before General Conference delegates.

What’s New for GC 2024 Part 2: Disaffiliation

During the past year, there have been many questions about church disaffiliation. While the disaffiliation legislation adopted by the 2019 General Conference has expired, eight additional proposals to permit disaffiliation have been submitted to the upcoming General Conference. Ask The UMC analyzes each of them. 

Pre-General Conference Video Resources

As The United Methodist Church approaches General Conference, UM News is providing video resources to help people better understand how the legislative assembly works and what legislation is under consideration. The first three videos are now posted with more to come over the next few weeks.

Fossil fuels divestment debate returns to GC 2024

Should The United Methodist Church divest from fossil fuel companies or hold onto the stocks and pressure the companies to do more to curb global warming? It’s a debate that engaged the 2016 General Conference. The different sides will be at it again at the upcoming General Conference in Charlotte. 

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