Mar 18, 2021

2021 Annual Conference Resolutions

This year the Eastern PA Annual Conference, May 20-22, will again be a time when the voices and views of diverse leaders can be heard to inform, inspire and maybe even involve members in trying new approaches to 21st century evangelistic outreach ministry. 

Important traditions will be upheld—everything from singing Charles Wesley’s venerable hymn “And Are We Yet Alive?” to asking new ordinands John Wesley’s Historic Questions, to celebrating the holy sacrament of baptism through our Conference theme, “Come to the Water.” 

That invitational theme is drawn from the biblical story in Acts 8:26-40, where the Apostle Philip baptizes an Ethiopian eunuch, who is on his way home, after teaching him about Jesus Christ. It’s an old story about bringing a new faith to new believers.

Ideas for sharing the Christian faith to make new believers, while wrestling with challenges and opportunities for creative outreach ministry, will likely emerge from the wisdom of the Annual Conference’s four guest speakers and preachers: 

  • The Rev. Jacqueline King will be our Laity Session keynoter on Thursday, May 20, at 1 PM. A popular speaker and trainer in our Conference, she was formerly the Director of U.S. Conference Relationships at the UMC’s Discipleship Ministries agency. 
  • The Rev. Dorlimar Lebrón Malavé will be our opening worship guest preacher on Friday, May 21, at 9 AM. Part of a growing cadre of dynamic, Latinx young adult leaders in the UMC, she is the pastor of First Spanish UMC (FSUMC) in New York City, an active, urban congregation also known as “The People’s Church.” 
  • The Rev. Frederick Douglas Powe Jr., PhD, will teach on the topic “Church Revitalization through Community Outreach” on Friday, May 21, at 2 PM. The author of several books, he is Director of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership, and he teaches Evangelism and Urban Ministry at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington DC.
  • Bishop Mark Webb, leader of the Upper New York Episcopal Area, will preach at the Service of Ordination and Commissioning on Saturday afternoon, May 22, at 2 PM. Board President of Discipleship Ministries since 2016, he was formerly a pastor and superintendent in the Susquehanna Conference and was a Harry Denman Evangelism Awardee in 2002. 

Our Resident Bishop Peggy Johnson will preach and celebrate Communion on Saturday morning, at 10 AM, during the Memorial Service for clergy and clergy spouses who died during the past conference year. Both Saturday services will be hosted again by Olivet UMC in Coatesville and attended onsite, respectively, by families of ordinands, commissionees, and deceased clergy and clergy spouses.

2021 Annual Conference Resolutions