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2007 East Africa Annual Conference

May 7-13, 2007, Mukono, Uganda

The 2007 annual session of The United Methodist Church in the East Africa Annual Conference was opened by Bishop Daniel Wandabula, who was elected and consecrated in 2006 after the death of Bishop John Ndoricimpa. Delegates came from Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda and Sudan. The conference theme was "Restore unto me the joy of my salvation&ellipsis;"

Delegates noted that the East Africa Annual Conference has lagged in both physical and spiritual development due to disunity, poverty and ignorance. Wandabula assured the conference of his vision for the holistic growth of the church in the region under his leadership. He appealed for unity and cooperation in the same body of Christ as brothers and sisters.

The church will focus on building capacity to address both the physical and spiritual needs of the congregations. It also will seek partners globally through the United Methodist Connectional Table.

The bishop promised to prioritize leadership development and training in the conference. "We know where we have come from &ellipsis; and we know where we are going," Wandabula said. "We do not have answers to our challenges, but God has the answers."

Attending were invited United Methodist clergy and laity from the United States led by Linda Gardella, coordinator of the Kentucky-East Africa Connection.

The Rev. John Black from the Texas Annual Conference said he had a burning calling for a pastoral leadership training program in Kenya. "I am coming to seek partnership with the leadership of the church in Kenya," he said.

Delegates resolved to start anew in all perceptions of their Christian lives and have the large annual conference divided into the Burundi Annual Conference, Uganda and Sudan Annual Conference, Kenya Provisional Annual Conference and Rwanda Provisional Annual Conference. This will be forwarded to the Central Conference and General Conference, respectively, for review.

Membership is more than 56,000 in the 450 congregations in the East Africa Annual Conference.

John B. Makokha