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2009 Peninsula-Delaware Annual Conference

Peninsula-Delaware Annual Conference
June 11-13, 2009, Princess Anne, Md.

Bishop Peggy A. Johnson opened the 225th Session of the Peninsula-Delaware Annual Conference and her very first conference as bishop by reading from Micah 6: 6-8: "What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and walk humbly with your God." She emphasized that we all need kindness in our relationships. She related a story where a young boy was asked what it meant to have a sweetheart. The child answered - it was like having company all the time. Bishop Johnson said that John Wesley had it right with his three simple rules Do no harm, Do good, and Walk humbly with God.

The theme of this year's conference was "Reach In" and the three-day session took place on the campus of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. There were 12 resolutions passed by the body including one brought by the Conference Committee on Native American Ministries. The resolution called for "No Sending or Receiving By Federal Express." This resolution is the result of the 2004 General Conference action relating to Resolution 131, which urges United Methodist constituencies from conducting meetings and events in cities that sponsor sport teams with Native American symbols and mascots. The annual conference took this action because the home of the Washington Redskins belongs to the Federal Express Corporation, and is known as FedEx Field.

Guests attending this year's conference included Bishop Sudarshana Devadhar from the Greater New Jersey Conference, retired Bishop Susan Morrison, Mr. Braque Talley representing the Black College Fund Ambassadors, the Rev. Roderick Miller from the Baltimore-Washington Conference, and cabinet members from the Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference.

Under the Missions report it was noted that the Peninsula-Delaware Annual Conference has paid its World Service Fund at 100 percent for at least 23 consecutive years. It has also been the only conference to pay 100 percent of the Africa University portion of the General Church Funds since the school opened. Over the course of the three-day session, the conference raised more than $44,000 for four appeals including more than $22,000 for Nothing But Nets.

The members passed a revised 2009 Covenant Funding Plan (budget) of $4,899.286 and $5,752,290 Covenant Funding Plan for 2010.

The annual conference voted on the 32 proposed constitutional amendments. All but Amendment I received a majority of positive votes.

Five people were ordained and five were commissioned including one for the order of deacon. We also retired three local pastors and one associate member. Membership stands at 89,801, down 1,470 from the previous year. Worship attendance stands at 35,772, down 188. Church school attendance stands at 22,518, down 1,751.

-The Rev. John W. Van Tine and Tamara D. Ward