Bishop and cabinet are tested for HIV/AIDS

Moses Mukasa (right), HIV/AIDS Prevention Specialist with Philadelphia AIDS Consortium, explains the mouth swab that is used to test for HIV/AIDS to Bishop Peggy Johnson.

by Suzy Keenan*

Bishop Peggy Johnson and district superintendents in the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference cabinet were tested for HIV/AIDS on Wednesday, May 23.

This effort of conference leadership was organized to raise awareness that June is AIDS Education month and that June 27th is National HIV Testing Day.   The testing was arranged by the H.U.B. (Help Us Be) of Hope Ministry, an HIV/AIDS ministry begun by United Methodist Church of the Open Door, Kennett Square, PA.  HUB of Hope connected with The Philadelphia AIDS Consortium, the HIV testing provider, and collaborated with Bishop Johnson to implement the testing event.

2012 General Conference Report


Mary White, center (in orange), discusses legislation prior to General Conference plenary sessions on April 30, with (l. to r.) Ruth Daugherty, Lillian Smith, Jordan Harris, and George Hollich. 

By Mary White*

During the first week of General Conference, delegates met in their assigned legislative committees.  A bishop was assigned to each legislative committee to help them organize, then each committee elected leadership: chair, vice chair, and secretary. Sub-committee chairs were elected, with each committee having 4 to 5 sub-committees. All elected officers attended training before the first session of their legislative committee.

Abolitionists available to speak July 17- Aug 24

Luke and Alisan Billman (seen with their family) are young adult abolitionists with Shores of Grace, living in Brazil to fight the giant of child prostitution, child trafficking and abuse. Brazil has become the number one destination for “sexual tourism” in the world, surpassing Thailand. They truly minister among the poor and marginalized. Once a homeless drug addict on the streets of Philadelphia, Luke is now a soldier for the Lord fighting for the lost, and walking in the miraculous presence of God every step of the way. Hear his journey out of darkness to walking in true sonship with the Father. Hear testimonies from the streets of Brazil and a word for the church in America.

Shores of Grace will be opening a restoration home in July for children rescued from the streets of Recife, the worst city in Brazil for sexual trafficking. They hope to open a second home in January.

Annual Conference 2012 Business: May 19 am

Dr. Mary White, conference lay leader, at the podium, delivers the Laity Address at Annual Conference 2012, on the morning of May 19.  Members of the Board of Lay Ministry accompany her on stage.

May 19, 2012

Bishop Johnson called the Conference to order at 9:00 am

A monitoring Report from the Commission on Religion and Race called the Body to be ”Naturally Inclusive.”

District Superintendents Report 

Rev. Jim Todd. Introduced Rev. Dr. Dorothy Watson Tatem, Rev. Dr. Anita Powell, Rev. Bronwyn  Yocum, Rev. Thomas Haugh.  Rev. Gary Nicholson was unable to be present (he was at his daughter’s graduation).

Rev. Gary Harke: But we are still one in Christ.

Rev. Gary Harke, executive director of the Pennsylvania Council of Churches, brought a message of Christian unity to the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference at its Annual Conference on the afternoon of Thursday, May 17.  Photo by Rev. Jim Mundell.

Brothers and sisters in Christ,

I bring you greetings from the Pennsylvania Council of Churches and your 41 partners in seeking Christian unity for the sake of the world. Our member church bodies pray and worship together, witness in the halls of government, and minister to travelers, farmworkers, and campers across Pennsylvania. We do this because we understand that God’s church is one, because God gifts us with unity in Jesus Christ.

I wish to say a few words about that unity, the unity for which Jesus prayed and that God calls us to make incarnate.

2012 Annual Conference Service of Ordination

2012 Class of Ordinands

2012 Annual Conference business: May 18


Twenty-three retirees drape handmade prayer shawls over the the shoulders of ordinands in a symbolic passing of the mantle of ministry.

2012 Annual Conference: Second Day - May 18, 2012

2012 Annual Conference business: May 17

At the opening of business on the afternoon of Thursday, May 17, sitting at the table are Bishop Peggy Johnson, Rev. Tracy Bass, conference secretary, and lay person, Jordan Harris.  

Bishop Peggy Johnson called the The Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of The United Methodist Church to order at 4:20 p.m., May 17, 2012

2012 Annual Conference: Gearing up...

Bishop Peggy Johnson prayed - over each of 1000 chairs - for the lay and clergy delegates who will sit in those chairs when the Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference begins on Thursday, May 17.  Opening Worship wll begin with praise music at 1:45, and worship to begin at 2:00 pm.  Ray Buckley, noted Native American storyteller, will preach for Opening Worship.

Financial Update for April 2012 and Audited Reports

Conference Budget

Please reference Schedules A and Schedule B for a summary of the conference budget for April 2012.

The total annual budget for 2012 shows revenue of $3.40 million and expenses of $3.050 million. The conference expense budget for 2012 of $3.050 million is 8.6% less than total spending of $3.34 million in 2011. The local churches support the conference budget through the CMF bill.

Through four months of 2012, revenue from church giving to CMF totalled $1,068,831. This was $64,503 or 5.7% less than budget but $79,049 or 7.4% more than April 2011.  The increase over the prior year is due, in part, to the slow start some of our churches experienced in the early part of 2011 with the roll out of the new remittance system.  


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