Message from Bishop Wallace-Padgett: Annual Conference 2022

June 17, 2022

Dear Friends,

I am looking forward to our upcoming annual conference at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Alabama, on June 22-24, 2022. It will be wonderful to meet in person again after two years of virtual conferences.

Conference Theme: I anticipate a powerful conference as we focus on the theme: Disciples Celebrating Discipleship. We will worship, hear reports of how God is moving among us, vote upon resolutions presented from various members of the annual conference and do business together.

Guest Preacher: Our guest preacher for the 2022 Annual Conference is Bishop David Graves. He will preach during morning worship on Thursday and Friday. Currently serving as the episcopal leader for the Alabama-West Florida and South Georgia Conferences, Bishop Graves has focused on making disciples throughout his ministry. Bishop Graves is known for his heart for missions, outstanding preaching, administrative abilities, relational skills and fairness. We will be blessed by his presence among us.

Special Offering: Every church is invited to participate in this year’s special offering, which will go to support United Methodist Churches in the Baltics as they provide care and assistance for Ukrainian refugees. Since the early 1990s we have been partners in ministry with United Methodists in the Baltics in a variety of ways, including supporting two missionary families (the Fridays and Clems), hosting the Children of Chernobyl from Belarus for several weeks, providing seminary support for leaders, building Camp Wesley for Latvians and so much more. Now with the crisis in Ukraine, we have the opportunity to reach out to our neighbors through the 2022 special mission offering which will be sent through The Advance with 100% going directly for United Methodist refugee support. The offering will be received on June 23 during the morning service.

Upcoming Called Annual Conference: Typically, we have one Annual Conference a year. However, in light of the reality that a number of our churches are considering disaffiliation, I will soon be issuing a call for a Called Annual Conference at the end of the year to vote on church disaffiliations. This will be the first of potentially three times we will vote on church disaffiliations for North Alabama churches who have gone through a discernment process and wish to disaffiliate from the United Methodist Church (December 2022; June 2023 and possibly December 2023). Though we are saddened that some of our churches will disaffiliate from the North Alabama Conference of The United Methodist Church, we trust their discernment and will bless them as they go forth into a new chapter in their history. We are also thankful that many of our North Alabama Conference churches will continue as United Methodists on the journey together.

I will see you soon at Annual Conference. As always, it is a privilege to serve as your bishop.

Debra Wallace-Padgett
Resident Bishop
Holston and North Alabama Conferences

Discover, Develop and Deploy Spiritual Leaders to Make Disciples of Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World.