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2012 Rocky Mountain Annual Conference

Rocky Mountain Annual Conference
June 14-16, 2012, Denver

The 2012 Rocky Mountain Annual Conference met June 14-16, 2012, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center.

The Rocky Mountain Conference convened for the 44th time with "Here are the Keys: Discovering What God Is Up To" as its theme, focusing on how those in attendance might make more open, both within themselves and their communities, the doors which lead to the transformation of the world. The conference body sang the refrain, "There's a wideness in God's mercy like the wideness of the sea," while acknowledging that God's love is often made too narrow.

In keeping with that theme, the Rocky Mountain Conference was pleased to host the Rev. Elaine Heath as its keynote speaker. She lifted up innovative ways of doing ministry, steeped in missions, monasticism, and United Methodist heritage and tradition that call us out of our normative church structures and into the community.

The conference session also had a focus on the global initiatives of The United Methodist Church. Thomas Kemper, top executive of the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries; the Rev. Don Messer, chair of United Methodist Global AIDS Fund, and Bishop Thomas Bickerton, of the Western Pennsylvania Annual (regional) Conference and chair of United Methodist Global Health Initiative, all provided the conference body with reports of how United Methodism is transforming communities on a global scale.

Legislative actions included moving to extend health for retiree benefits, continuing the support of the denomination's initiative on Global AIDS and the approval of the"We Will Not Be Silent" Resolution, which affirms and upholds the "We Will Not Be Silent" Declaration made by the Western Jurisdiction in 2000 and adapted in 2004.

The Commissioning and Ordination service was held June 16 at St. Andrew United Methodist Church, with Bishop Thomas Bickerton providing the message. He urged the Rocky Mountain Conference to dream the big dreams, make it a reality, and use the keys we've been given to unlock the Kingdom of God. Bishop Elaine J.W. Stanovsky received one as an associate member, confirmed four as licensed local pastors, commissioned seven provisional members toward elder orders, six provisional members toward deacon orders and ordained three deacons and four elders.

Membership stands at 64,662, down 1,185 from the previous year. Worship attendance stands at 30,696, down 440 from the previous year.

- Matthew Graham, communications assistant in the Rocky Mountain Conference