The business session of the worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church will be held in San Antonio, Texas, between July 2 and 12. Known as the General Conference Session, it is held every five years and attracts church members from across the world. It will be a time of spiritual renewal, reflecting on growth and changes in the Church, setting strategic directions and policy determination.
Of the tens of thousands of people who attend, some 2200 will have been appointed by the General Conference and its constituent bodies (the Unions) to be their representatives. We call them “delegates”. These church members have the authority to vote on matters placed before them. This is a very significant responsibility and privilege as there are always matters on the agenda of considerable importance to the Church.
[Serving as a delegate] is a very significant responsibility and privilege as there are always matters on the agenda of considerable importance to the Church.
A total of 102 delegates are appointed from within the South Pacific Division (SPD). Eleven are our current SPD members of the General Conference Executive Committee; 65 are appointed from and by the Unions; and 26 are appointed by the Division. This year the delegates will be asked to consider agenda items, including: amendments to our statement of fundamental beliefs; a resolution on the Bible; the theology and practice of ministerial ordination; and amendments to the Church Manual.
Please pray that those who have been asked to assume the responsibility of representing us will be granted grace and wisdom, and that our mission to make disciples for Jesus will be greatly enhanced by the decisions made at this General Conference session.
Dr Barry Oliver is president of the South Pacific Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.