By Jessica Connor
With Annual Conference just a little more than a month away, delegates and districts across South Carolina are gearing up for a month of pre-conference training events.
The events are designed to help people learn everything they need to know for the four-day gathering, set for June 9-12 in Florence.
Throughout May, each of South Carolina s 12 districts will hold a training event to explain key issues, orient new delegates and inform people about other critical things they should understand before more than 2,000 clergy and laity gather to conduct the business of The United Methodist Church in this state.
These training events are a chance for people to be informed and prepare themselves for the issues and resolutions we will be voting on at Annual Conference, explained Matt Brodie, conference communications director.
Brodie noted that the trainings are designed to educate delegates so business can run more smoothly “ and people can perhaps spend less time debating and clarifying issues on the floor.
See box this page for the dates, times and locations of each training event.
District superintendents are encouraging anyone going to Annual Conference to be sure to attend the trainings.
This training is very important because the more you know, the more you will understand the method to our madness, said Dr. Frederick N. Yebuah, Orangeburg District superintendent. The more you understand, the more you will value your vote at Annual Conference. The more you value your vote, the more exciting and enjoyable the Annual Conference experience becomes. And the more exciting the Annual Conference experience becomes, the more powerful we all become in our endeavors to change our world.
The Rev. Joe Long, Rock Hill District superintendent, said the trainings are offered with the hope that by being more informed about what to expect at Annual Conference, we will make better decisions.
Prayerful pondering prior to conference can help us make the most of the time we have together at conference, Long said.
The Rev. Patricia J. Parrish, Charleston District superintendent, said it is very important for the lay members and pastors to attend to hear explanations of the reports and to ask questions of those who are available to answer them.
It is an opportunity to learn more about our connectional life together, Parrish said.
For more information about Annual Conference 2013, click here .
Pre-Annual Conference Training Events
Anderson:Monday, May 6, 7-8 p.m., Trinity UMC, Anderson
Charleston: Thursday, May 9, 7 p.m., Cokesbury UMC, North Charleston
Columbia: Sunday, May 19, 3-5 p.m., Cayce UMC, Cayce
Florence: Sunday, May 5, 4 p.m., Wesley Chapel UMC, Lake City
Greenville: Sunday, May 19, 3-5 p.m., St Mark UMC, Taylors
Greenwood: Sunday, May 5, 3-5 p.m., Central UMC, Newberry
Hartsville: Sunday, May 19, 3:30 p.m., Wesley UMC, Hartsville
Marion: Sunday, May 19, 3:30-5 p.m., at Bethel UMC, Marion
Orangeburg: Sunday, May 5, 3:30-5:30 p.m., St. Andrews UMC, Orangeburg
Rock Hill: Sunday, May 19, 3 p.m., Aldersgate UMC, Rock Hill
Spartanburg: Sunday, May 26, 3 p.m., St. Paul UMC, Spartanburg
Walterboro: Sunday, May 5, 3:30 p.m., Bethel UMC, Walterboro