Friday's legislative update


A proposal to recommend shortening annual conference by a day (LI 202) was defeated following a lengthy discussion during Friday’s session of the 2010 annual conference.

The measure, offered by Sangamon River District Lay Leader Pete Paulson, sought to make it easier for younger persons and persons who are actively employed to attend by requiring less time away from home.
But others, such as retired pastor Stan Haxton noted that clergy have their only membership in the annual conference.
“When a lay member comes to annual conference, they leave their home congregation,” Haxton said. “But for the pastor, annual conference is coming home. It is that once a year, Shangri-la like moment that feeds our spirit.”
The measure failed by a vote of 396-513.
A resolution seeking an exemption with the apportionment formula (LI 203) also failed in a final vote 427-474. The legislation was brought by the Fithian-Oakwood-Hebron charge which had experienced a bat problem in its church bell tower. Because of the $15,000 expense which was reported as a maintenance expense, the church’s 2011 apportionments would rise because maintenance is one of the line-items that figures into the final apportionment while capital expenses are not.
Although the matter failed, Council on Finance and Administration chair David Hood offered to work with the congregation’s pastor to resolve the matter in an equitable way even without new legislation.
Members of the annual conference also voted the discontinuance of eight congregations:
  • Sibley UMC, Iroquois River District (LI 114)
  • Quincy Grace UMC, LaMoine River District (LI 115)
  • Basco UMC, LaMoine River District (LI 116)
  • Christopher UMC, Cache River District (LI 117)
  • Mt. Etna UMC, Cache River District (LI 118)
  • Marlow UMC, Kaskaskia River District (LI 119)
  • Mt. Gilead UMC, Iroquois River District (LI 121)
  • Mattoon Faith UMC, Embarras River District (LI 122)