All about General Conference this spring

What is General Conference and why isn’t it called the ‘2024 General Conference’?

By Jessica Brodie

General Conference is typically held once every four years, with the exception of the special session in February 2019, which was called to address a report from the Commission on a Way Forward on unity amid church strife over differing views on human sexuality.

This year’s General Conference is the postponed 2020 General Conference. That year’s conference was postponed multiple times because of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent logistical delays (such as visa issues for delegates traveling to the United States). Even though it is being held in 2024, it is still considered and properly called the “postponed 2020 General Conference.”

It will be held April 23-May 3, 2024, at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

At General Conference, delegates discuss and vote on petitions and resolutions proposed by individuals, conferences and other groups within the UMC, from budgetary concerns to issues such as sexuality, poverty and more.

Delegates are in their legislative committees for the first week. After a sabbath break Sunday, April 28, business starts April 29. 

General Conference, comprised of roughly 1,000 representatives from every conference in the worldwide UMC, is the only body that can set official policy and speak for the denomination. Legislation passed at General Conference results in revisions to the Book of Discipline (a book of law) and Book of Resolutions (a book of policies on social issues).

Jurisdictional Conference gathers representatives from every conference in the Southeastern Jurisdiction to elect new bishops, approve the budget for the next four years and conduct general business.

Learn more:

Who is representing S.C. at General Conference?

By Jessica Brodie

At the postponed 2020 General Conference, South Carolina will be represented by the delegates elected at Annual Conference in June 2019.

Eight lay and eight clergy delegates, plus alternates, were elected to General Conference, scheduled for April 23-May 3, 2024, at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

They will join eight more lay and eight more clergy, plus alternates, to represent South Carolina at the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference, scheduled for July 10-12 in Lake Junaluska, North Carolina.

Some of those originally elected are no longer able to serve; for instance, one—Dr. Robin Dease—is now a bishop serving in the North Georgia Annual Conference.

The updated list of delegates is as follows:

General Conference Delegation 

Clergy Delegates:

  • Rev. Ken Nelson

  • Rev. Keith Hunter

  • Rev. Susan Leonard

  • Rev. Emily Sutton

  • Rev. Will Malambri

  • Rev. Tiffany Knowlin

  • Rev. Karen Jones

  • Rev. Tim Rogers

Lay Delegates:

  • Jackie Jenkins

  • James Salley

  • Michael Cheatham

  • Herman Lightsey

  • Chris Lynch

  • David Braddon

  • Betty Void

  • David Salter

Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference Delegation (Includes the Above Plus):

Clergy Delegates: 

  • Rev. Cathy Mitchell

  • Rev. Fran Elrod

  • Rev. Connie Barnes

  • Rev. Mary Teasley

  • Rev. Kathryn Hunter

  • Rev. Elizabeth Murray

  • Rev. Dr. Stephen Love

  • Rev. Sara White

 Lay Delegates:

  • Valerie Brooks-Madden

  • Marlene Spencer

  • Jennifer Price

  • Tony Watson

  • Lou Jordan

  • Doug Coffeen

  • Marvin Horton

  • Vicki McCartha

New website to help people navigate General Conference

Volunteers also sought to help, provide hospitality

The Western North Carolina and North Carolina Conferences of The United Methodist Church have launched, an informational website dedicated to enhancing the General Conference experience for those serving and attending.

Recognizing the importance of providing valuable resources and hospitality for attendees, shares opportunities to serve during General Conference and what you need to know to navigate the city of Charlotte during your visit. Key features:

Apply to serve: The WNC and NC conferences invite individuals older than 18 to apply for service opportunities during the General Conference. As part of the Welcome Team at General Conference, these volunteers will have a tremendous opportunity to see the United Methodist connection up close and provide hospitality to friends in Christ from around the world.

Places to stay: Discover where to stay in Charlotte, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable stay during the General Conference.

City highlights: Explore things to do, places to eat and attractions during your stay.

Find a church: Connect with local churches and find meaningful worship experiences within and around the Charlotte area.

“We have the opportunity to be the hands and feet of Christ and create a holy space where spirits can be nurtured. This will foster a welcoming environment and support delegates as they come together in worship, discernment, and holy conferencing on behalf of the mission of The United Methodist Church,” shared Bishops Ken Carter and Connie Mitchell Shelton in a joint statement.

Application process for serving at General Conference: Visit for detailed instructions on the application process. This is an opportunity for United Methodists to live out their discipleship commitments to The United Methodist Church by contributing their time and skills to the success of the General Conference.

Supplemental ADCA now available online for General Conference

NASHVILLE—The supplemental advance edition of the Daily Christian Advocate for General Conference is now available online at

The Advance Daily Christian Advocate contains the agenda, rules, petitions, reports from the general agencies/commissions and study committees, information for delegates and codes of conduct for the General Conference.

The website includes new valid petitions to the postponed General Conference received prior to Sept. 6, 2023; new reports from the general agencies of The United Methodist Church; new Delegate Handbook information, including an updated schedule, lists of people to know, the Plan of Organization and Rules of Order, and other important information for delegates to the 2024 General Conference; and petitions received for the 2020 General Conference according to the original dates and previously published in 2020.

There are 1,099 total valid petitions to the General Conference, including 352 new valid petitions received prior to Sept. 6, 2023.

Because of an unprecedented set of circumstances related to delegate verification, the alphabetical list of delegates and first reserve delegates, the list of delegates for each annual conference and the membership of legislative committees will be published on the Daily Christian Advocate website as soon as they have been completely processed. As with previous General Conferences, the most up-to-date lists will also be published in the first daily edition of the DCA at General Conference.

The website is fully available in English, French, Portuguese and Kiswahili. You may choose your preferred language when you create your account for the site. 

To access please note the following things:

General Conference delegates and first reserves receive free access to the website. Others may access the site for a one-time fee of $49.99, which allows you to create an account and have ongoing access through General Conference, including all future updates. 

Those who are not delegates to the General Conference should click “Create an Account for Public Access” and follow the on-screen instructions to create their account.

The new petitions, reports and updated Delegate Handbook information will also be published in a printed 2024 Supplement to the ADCA available in English, French, Portuguese and Kiswahili. The supplement will be Volume 3 of the ADCA (Volume 1 was the original Delegate Handbook and Volume 2 contains the original petitions and reports). It will be provided to delegates on-site in Charlotte at the beginning of General Conference.

Because of complications in the printing and shipping industries, it will not be mailed to delegates in advance.

PDF files of the printed supplement will be posted on the General Conference website as soon as they are available.

Currently, a preliminary file containing the new, valid petitions and reports is posted in English, but is subject to final editing and translation before the entire supplement will be posted in all four languages.

General Conference Orientation

A livestreamed orientation to help prepare General Conference delegates is scheduled 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. U.S. Eastern time Feb. 29-March 1 as a partnership between the United Methodist News team of United Methodist Communications and the Rev. Gary Graves, secretary of the General Conference.

Register at

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