Message from Bishop Wallace-Padgett: Reflections on Annual Conference 2017


Dear Friends,

We sang God’s Song in Tune and Rhythm at the 2017 North Alabama Annual Conference. It was truly a wonderful experience.

Highlights included:

  • extraordinary hospitality offered by host Superintendent Rev. Tom Parrish, the Northeast District volunteers and the Von Braun Center;
  • great sermons and teaching sessions by Bishop Robert Schnase and Bishop James R. King, Jr.;
  • an offering of more than $40,000 designated for our Ministry with the Poor Initiative;
  • several presentations that emphasized methods and tools to increase church health;
  • excellent worship led by several of our talented North Alabama worship leaders;
  • a Memorial Service in which we remembered the lives and ministries of clergy and spouses who died since we last gathered as an Annual Conference;
  • the recognition and expressions of appreciation of clergy who retired at this Annual Conference;
  • the licensing, commissioning and ordination worship service hosted at Huntsville Trinity United Methodist Church;
  • the celebration of 37 new faith communities started in 2016 and 28 in 2017, plus 16 new Celebrate Recovery sites. (New faith communities include satellites, celebrate recovery, fresh expressions, restarts and new church plants);
  • the acknowledgement of the Denman award recipients;
  • lively debate on resolutions and constitutional amendments;
  • the setting of appointments;
  • canvas art illustrating our commitment to pray and share our faith regularly with others;
  • and much more.

Now that Annual Conference 2017 has come and gone, what is next?

My prayer for North Alabama United Methodists is that we will continue singing God’s Song throughout this year. May we sing wherever we are from the far corners to the center of the conference . . . in local churches of all sizes . . . in extension ministries of a variety of types . . . at home, work, school . . . day in and day out . . . 24/7. Sing God’s Song in tune and rhythm. Doing so changes our lives, churches and the world in which we live.

As always, it is a privilege to serve as your bishop.

Debra Wallace-Padgett
Resident Bishop
North Alabama Conference

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