Bishop David Graves, resident bishop of the Alabama-West Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church, has called for a pause on any special church conferences or town hall meetings related to local church disaffiliations between November 20, 2022-January 1,2023.
“During this time our focus should be on giving thanks before moving into Advent,” stated Bishop Graves. “Our churches need to prepare to welcome record crowds during Advent. This request speaks to my desire for churches to focus on mission and ministry; especially during one of the busiest liturgical seasons of the year for local churches. Moreover, our four district superintendents have worked tirelessly in 2022 to accommodate numerous requests from local churches to hold church conferences and town hall meetings. These leaders deserve this time to focus on family and their personal faith walk.”
Three special-called annual conference sessions have been scheduled over the course of the next thirteen months in order to accommodate all churches considering disaffiliation. Those dates are November 12, 2022; May 7, 2023 and November 12, 2023.