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Re-globalization Of The UMC In CPT Proposal, Gets A Gracious, "Thanks, But No Thanks"

Principles of CPT Affirmed, GCOM Retained

The report that provoked church-wide discussion in the months prior to General Conference was received “with appreciation,” and most of its principles affirmed, but its suggestion to create a Covenant Council in place of the General Council on Ministries was rejected Saturday night by the legislative committee on General/Judicial Administration. By a vote of 71-2-1, the committee amended the original CPT report by deleting the entire text and replacing it with a new charge to the General Council on Ministries for the new quadrennium.

The committee expressed their appreciation for the five ‘transformational directions’ contained in the CPT report:

• Centering on Christian formation

• Calling forth covenant leadership

• Empowering the connection for leadership

• Strengthening our global connection and ecumenical relationships

• Encouraging doctrinal and theological discourse

Stating that they are more committed to renewal of the spirit in which the church does its ministry than they are to the structure of the church, the committee charged the General Council on Ministries:

• To work with the church in discerning God’s will for its work and living as biblical people in the Wesleyan tradition through a style of leadership that is collegial, cooperative, inclusive and actively practices hospitality”

• To be a model for the church for how to articulate a clear and compelling ministry vision that “focuses the work of all the parts”

• To determine the most effective design for the work of the general agencies (avoiding duplication, enhanced resourcing for annual conferences and local churches), and to provide implementing legislation for the 2004 conference

• To help annual conferences and local churches live out the transformational directions both locally and connectionally

• To rebuild trust between general agencies and their constituents

• To continue the dialogue about the global nature of the UMC

“I can’t complement the committee enough,” said chairwoman Christine Harman of the Kentucky Conference. “It was an astonishing work of the Holy Spirit.”

If it is determined that there are not financial implications to the proposal, the recommendation will go on the “Consent Calendar” and will be approved along with other uncontested items.

—John Thornburg, Daily Christian Advocate

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