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2013 Missouri Annual Conference

Missouri Annual Conference
June 7-10, Springfield, Mo.

Officiating bishop: Bishop Robert Schnase

Guest speakers: Bishop Thomas Bickerton, Rev. Juanita Rasmus

Memorable points or quotes by speakers:

Missouri Bishop Robert Schnase began his Monday morning learning time at Annual Conference session by characterizing this era as a time of astounding flux, fluidity and recalibration.

"The skills I learned from gifted mentors wouldn't serve me well in the ministry I'm called upon to lead today," he said.

"Facing changing times requires constant learning and adaptation. When someone recounts the best decision he or she ever made, it is usually the decision to try something. John Wesley and the early Methodists were characterized by bold originality, outward focus, future orientation, creativity, and being counter-cultural risk takers."

"We must move from what shall we do to what should we try, and what do we have to do," Bishop Schnase said. "Imagine being the church that figures some of this stuff out. There are no permanent victories, but together we will share things, and keep trying things that are new."

From Bob Farr:

"If people are ever going to share their faith outside the church, they must first learn to practice sharing their face inside the church," Bob Farr, Director of the Center for Congregational Excellence. Also from Farr: "This year there will be seven new church starts, the most ever in one year for the Missouri Conference. These congregations are investing in themselves. A Pacific Islander congregation is starting up in Independence, a start based on demographics of the area. Since 2008, 29 churches have been started and 24 are still worshiping."

Main actions enacted by the conference:

Goal set by districts of raising $1.2 million for Imagine No Malaria.

Every person received a copy of Bob Farr's new book: Get Their Name: Grow Your Church by Building New Relationships, www.gettheirname.com

Resolutions adopted by the conference: None.

Actions taken on proposed constitutional amendments from 2012 General Conference: Passed.

Number of people ordained, commissioned or received into associate membership and average age:
Ordained: Nine, average age: 43
Commissioned: Nine, average age: 45
Received into Associate membership: None

Number of people retired: 31

Membership stands at 163,154, down 1,455 from the previous year.

Worship attendance stands at 80,936, up 605.

Church school attendance stands at 27,467, down 294.

Professions of Faith: 3,736, up 404.

- Fred Koenig, Editor of Publications, Missouri Conference