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2010 North Central New York Annual Conference

North Central New York Annual Conference
June 18, 2010, Liverpool, N.Y.

The Rev. Dale E. Austin, North Central New York Annual Conference Secretary for 19 years, offered the closing motion as the conference ended its final annual conference session in preparation for their future ministry as part of the Upper New York Annual Conference:

"Today we stand just a little more than a month from the 200th anniversary of Methodism in this region. It was on July 20, 1810 that the Genesee Conference was originally created, with bishops Asbury and McKendree presiding," Austin noted. "During the two centuries since that time we have seen many changes, and the present time is no exception. So it is with gratitude to God for all that has been, for the rich heritage that is already ours, and for the hope that leads us into the future."

Austin moved to close the 202nd session of the North Central New York Annual Conference and transfer all records and reports to the Upper New York Area and authorize all remaining business be completed by the new conference.

A service of appointment and closing celebration concluded with a benediction by Bishop Marcus Matthews encouraging all to make a difference in a hurting and broken world and living as people who are different today then we were yesterday because of meeting Jesus.

"Because of that we are not the same today as yesterday," Matthews said. "May the peace and love of God go with you always."

The closing motion followed a day in which members of the final North Central New York Annual Conference worshiped together; affirmed a number of resolutions, including those necessary to make possible their becoming part of the Upper New York Annual Conference; approved the discontinuation of three churches and affirmed the Cortland United Methodist congregation assuming ownership of a church building left vacant by discontinuation of another United Methodist congregation, for developing community-oriented ministry.

The Mutambara Mission Centre Water Project will receive $14,000 in funding from the 2010 Love Offering brought to the annual conference session. An offering for Mission of Peace participants totaled $4,784.32.

The Rev. Stephen Deckard brought a message of "threshold moments" as he shared during the opening worship of the closing session.

"This is a historical day. This is the last time that the NCNY Annual Conference will meet in session," Deckard said. "Our foremothers and forefathers have prayed taught, sung, and preached and in lots of other ways as well have been faithful church people. Those who have gone before have walked with God. They have known, felt, and sensed the power of God. We celebrate their faithfulness. Today we pause on the threshold of a new Creation - the next leg of the journey for United Methodists in these parts of God's world.

"Lord, have mercy when we chose to leave out, or limit, the Holy blessings for our community.

"As we close the door on the NCNY Annual Conference and open a new door to God's future may we open our hearts and minds to the Holy Spirit. I have great appreciation and joy for these years of ministry together. Thanks to you for your leadership and faithful Christian service.

"I also have great anticipation for all that God is doing in my life and the life of laity, clergy, and local churches. May you know all the Holy Blessings of God and share them with others," Deckard concluded.

Membership stands at 70,310, down 1,924 from the previous year. Average weekly worship attendance stands at 2,731, down 27 Church school attendance stands at 5250, down 192.

- Marilyn J. Kasperek, Director of Communications