Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Nota Bene: UMC Presidents Statement Regarding Methodist Called General Conference

As you may know, the 20-member Board of Directors of the National Association of Schools, Colleges, and Universities of the United Methodist Church (NASCUMC) met in Scottsdale, Arizona, last week to discuss the upcoming Called General Conference. The NASCUMC Board represents the 119 colleges, universities, independent schools, and seminaries that are affiliated with the United Methodist Church. The winter meeting of NASCUMC was the largest gathering of presidents in more than a decade. 

One of the important outcomes of this meeting was the creation of a joint statement from the Board to leaders of the Church regarding issues coming before the Called General Conference in February. The joint statement was drafted by the NASCUMC Board of Directors presidents after an extensive discussion about the Commission on Way Forward report with Bishop Sandra Steiner Ball, co-moderator of the Commission. The statement was then presented to the overall presidents of the colleges and universities in attendance at the business meeting the following day. It was approved unanimously by the NASCUMC Board of Directors and by all of those gathered for the winter meeting. Read the statement here.

I serve as one of three NASCUMC spokespersons on the issue along with Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette, President of NASCUMC, and Dr. Mark Hanshaw, Associate General Secretary for Higher Education. I share this with you because this is a critical time in the life of the Methodist Church and Methodist higher education as we look ahead to the February Called General Conference.