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GM Church Reveals General Conference Theme

Por Walter B. Fenton

The Global Methodist Church’s Transitional Leadership Council has released the logo and theme for its convening General Conference: So the World Will Know.

“It is a line taken from Jesus’ great prayer in the Gospel of John, chapter 17,” said Mike Sims, founder and principal of the Winsome Company, a marketing and consulting firm that assisted in developing the theme. “Beginning with the conjunction, ‘so,’ makes the theme a flexible phrase for applying the Gospel message on a worldwide scale: So the world will know . . . God’s love. So the world will know . . . salvation in Christ. So the world will know . . . grace and forgiveness, and so forth. It is an all-encompassing call for Global Methodists to share Christ in a unified witness to the world.”

Launched on May 1, 2022, with just 24 congregations in Bulgaria, the Global Methodist Church now has 4,336 local churches world-wide. Its convening General Conference will be held in San Jose, Costa Rica, September 20 – 26, 2024. The Transitional Leadership Council appointed 22 clergy and laity to serve on the Transitional Commission on the General Conference to develop all the plans for its critical first gathering, including recommending the Conference’s theme.

“We entertained numerous ideas before we landed on So the World Will Know,” said the Rev. Beth Ann Cook, the Commission’s chairwoman and the Lead Pastor at St. Paul’s Methodist Church in Poseyville, Indiana. “Selecting a theme sounds easy, but when you stop and think how important it is to choose one that reflects our Church’s aspirations, you realize how critical it is to slow down, to pray, to meditate on Scripture, and carefully discern the Holy Spirit’s leading. I am very thankful the Commission members and our consultant were committed to that process.”

A theme is just one of a myriad number of decisions the Commission is tasked with making. It is also charged with making recommendations for the Conference’s daily agenda, collecting and collating petitions for consideration, determining the number of delegates that will attend the gathering, and making sure translation resources are available so all the delegates can fully participate in its deliberations.

“Our theme will begin appearing in English, French, Korean, Spanish, and Swahili, so GMC members all around the world can become familiar with it,” said Cara Nicklas, the chairwoman of the Church’s Transitional Leadership Council.  “It is an elegant, simple, and inspiring theme that I am confident will be embraced by the people of the Church. We are thankful for the prayers, and the time and effort the Commission and Winsome Company gave to developing the theme for convening General Conference.”

GM Church delegates to the conference will come from provisional annual conferences in Bulgaria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia-Kenya, the Philippines, Slovakia, Spain, South Africa, and the United States. And the Church continues to register in other countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas with the hope that other delegates from these areas will be able to participate in the GM Church’s convening General Conference.

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The Rev. Walter Fenton is the Global Methodist Church’s Deputy Connectional Officer.

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