Delegates and observers from around the world will gather at the Dome at America’s Center, February 24-26, 2019, for the Special Session of the United Methodist General Conference. The General Conference is the only body that speaks officially for the 12.6 million
-member church. The event will be available via live video streaming at UMC.org/live
The day preceding the start of General Conference, February 23, has been designated as a day of preparation and prayer
as a culmination of the Praying Our Way Forward
initiative (see schedule here
). General Conference 2019 will officially open at 7:30 a.m., Sunday, February 24, with a worship service. Preaching will be Bishop Kenneth H. Carter, Jr., president of the Council of Bishops.
As the top policymaking body of the worldwide United Methodist Church, the General Conference meets every four years to determine the denomination’s future direction. The General Conference was next slated to meet in 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, but the Council of Bishops called a special session
“limited to receiving and acting upon a report
from the Commission on a Way Forward
based upon the recommendations of the Council of Bishops.”
The Judicial Council subsequently ruled
that petitions could be filed by any organization, clergy or lay member of The United Methodist Church if the business proposed to be transacted is “in harmony” with the purpose stated in the call.
Plenary sessions and legislative committee meetings of the General Conference are open to the public. Guest and observer registration is required to attend the General Conference sessions. Registration desks will be located inside Entry B of the Dome at America’s Center. On-site registration opens on February 22 at 2 p.m. There is a suggested badge fee of $10 for on-site registration to offset the costs of the credentialing process. Pre-registered guests may pick up their badges at the registration desk.
Media who are covering the session can apply for credentials at the news registration desk at the Broadway Central entrance.
To assure the safety and security of attendees, security personnel will be checking for prohibited items for all persons entering the convention center through the use of wands and inspecting bags. Complimentary wi-fi access will be provided.
Simultaneous voice interpretation for delegates will be available in English, French, German, Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian and Swahili. Non-delegate attendees needing English interpretation when other languages are being spoken can listen to translations via an FM radio (recommended) or by downloading a free app, and will need to bring their own device, as well as earbuds or headphones.