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General Conference 2008: All Headlines

Bishop Gregory Palmer delivers the parting message to General Conference delegates during closing worship.

Wrap-up: General Conference closes with message of hope after addressing budget, social issues

Delegates end meeting with action on diverse issues and parting words of hope. Read More

Advocates for pregnant immigrants speak out

Authorities' treatment of Juana Villegas, her newborn and her family was unnecessary and cruel, say her supporters in Nashville, Tenn. Read More

A petition dealing with clergy effectiveness and annual appointments are among measures considered by the 2008 United Methodist General Conference.

Assembly sets guidelines on clergy effectiveness

Bishops who question the effectiveness of a clergy person now have procedures for terminating the appointment. Read More

Bishop Gregory Palmer leads closing worship at the 2008 United Methodist General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas.

General Conference acts on wide range of issues

Delegates hear memorable speeches, approve $642 million budget, and set direction on social issues and church ministries. Read More

The Rev. Youngsook C. Kang speaks to the legislative committee on ministry and higher education at the 2008 United Methodist General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas.

Commentary: Seeking balance at General Conference

"What we are doing... is a spiritual work," says the assembly's chief scheduler, urging the 2012 gathering to observe Sabbath. Read More

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, president of Liberia, addresses the 2008 United Methodist General Conference. Sirleaf is a United Methodist and the first female head of state in Africa.

Liberia President Sirleaf addresses United Methodists

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf says her country and her church share a common commitment to end poverty. Read More

Gay rights supporters react tearfully to an April 30 vote at the 2008 United Methodist General Conference, retaining the church's position that the practice of homosexuality is

United Methodists uphold homosexuality stance

After forceful arguments on both sides, delegates retain language in the denomination's Book of Discipline. Read More

Anna Blaedel addresses members of the Board of Church and Society during a meeting in which they considered divestment in preparation for sending petitions to General Conference 2008.

Church rejects divestment from companies working with Israel

While rejecting divestment, General Confrence delegates urge advocating for peace in the Middle East. Read More

Bishops Mary Ann Swenson and John Hopkins introduce the presentation on the church's proposed four-year budget of $642 million. The spending plan later was approved by the 2008 United Methodist General Conference.

Assembly approves $642 million churchwide budget

General Conference approves a denominational spending plan built around four areas of mission and ministry. Read More

Bishop Eben K. Nhiwatiwa of the church's Zimbabwe Area signs a covenant to extend through 2012 the partnership between the Zimbabwe and Baltimore-Washington conferences. The signing ceremony occurred April 30 during the 2008 United Methodist General Conference.

Conferences extend covenant agreement

Relationship-building and work together benefits both Zimbabwe and Baltimore-Washington annual conferences. Read More

Agency focuses on centennial, health initiatives

Health, wellness and central conference pensions will be among board's future emphases. Read More

A delegate catches a quick nap in between presentations on the eighth day of the 10-day 2008 United Methodist General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas.

Commentary: Deliberating under the influence (of too little sleep) at GC 2008

Packed agenda with little time for rest or sleep impairs delegates' abilities. Read More

The Rev. Grace Cajiuat leads a liturgical version of the United Methodist Social Creed during a celebration of the creed's 100th anniversary at the 2008 General Conference. In the background are Bishop Beverly Shamana and Jim Winkler.

United Methodist Social Creed celebrated

The church's Social Creed continues to express the scriptural mandate to care for the sojourner, the weak and the orphaned. Read More

Elvira Arellano took sanctuary in Adalberto United Methodist Church in Chicago for one year ending in August of 2007 before her arrest in Los Angeles.

Church supports justice for migrants

United Methodists have adopted resolutions supporting justice for migrants worldwide and reform of U.S. immigration laws. Read More

Delegate Joseph Daniels of the church's Baltimore-Washington Area addresses a session of the Local Church legislative committee of the 2008 United Methodist General Conference.

Delegates reject petitions aimed at ineffective clergy

Pension plans adopted in 2004 are also retained. Read More

Judicial Council defers two ruling requests from General Conference

The court said both issues need study and would become docket items for its October session. Read More

The

Justice petitions address welfare, hate, torture

Resolutions call for work toward a living wage to be a worldwide effort. Read More

Bishop Hope Morgan Ward preaches during the morning worship service on May 2, the final day of the 10-day United Methodist General Conference.

Bishop Ward: Wait, watch, receive God’s spirit

Delegates urged to be witnesses to God's work in the world. Read More

Tara Thronson of the Southwest Texas Annual (regional) Conference speaks on a petition from the Church and Society legislative committee during the 2008 United Methodist General Conference.

Church tackles difficult subject of abortion

General Conference votes to continue membership with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. Read More

Susan Laurie (left) and Julie Bruno lead a procession through the Fort Worth Convention Center, site of the 2008 United Methodist General Conference, on the way to their marriage ceremony across the street in General Worth Square.

Same-sex couple says ‘I do’ outside church assembly

Days after their church upheld its position against same-sex unions, two women join in a marriage ceremony. Read More