Officiating bishop: Bishop Peggy A. Johnson
The Rev. Dorlimar Lebrón Malavé, pastor of First Spanish United Methodist Church in New York City, opening worship preacher
The Rev. Frederick Douglas Powe Jr., Director of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership in Washington DC, and professor Evangelism and Urban Ministry at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington DC. (Taught session on “Church Revitalization through Community Outreach”)
Bishop Mark Webb, leader of the Upper New York Episcopal Area, preached at Service of Ordination and Commissioning
Rev. Jacqueline King was the Laity Session keynoter.
The conference approved eight resolutions, including:
1. Conference trustees’ clarification of how to distribute required payments received from churches that want to disaffiliate from the denomination and retain their property. One church, Grandview Church in Lancaster (formerly Grandview United Methodist), disaffiliated this year, based on an agreement approved by the 2020 Annual Conference.
2. Discontinued two closed churches.
3. Passed 2022 Connectional Ministries Fund spending budget of $3.3 million. (Separate from General Church apportionment budget.)
4. The Rev. Joseph DiPaolo requested a ruling of law on whether churches and the conference are obligated to pay general church apportionments prior to the next General Conference in 2022, or if the 2017-20 quadrennium’s apportionments have been paid 100%, whether payments in 2021-2022 would be considered voluntary. (Read more here.)
Resolutions or actions related to the postponed 2020 General Conference, now set for 2022: None
Number of churches that closed: Two, from long-term decline. Effects of COVID-19 pandemic unknown.
Any special annual conference set: No
Endorsement of episcopal candidate: No
Other resolutions adopted by the conference: Typical, annual clergy compensation and benefits resolutions, plus annual local mission support for Advance Special projects.
Names of delegates for General Conference and designation of lay or clergy: See website report.
Did the conference have to elect replacement delegates due to the delay? None elected, but one Jurisdictional clergy alternate delegate, the Rev. Robin Hynicka, replaces a General Conference clergy delegate, Rev. Andrea Brown, pastor of the former, now-disaffiliated Grandview UMC.
Was there a push at your conference to elect younger delegates? Yes, in 2019. See 2020 report.
Number of people ordained, commissioned or received into associate membership, and average age:
1 ordained deacon, 1 commissioned deacon, 4 commissioned elders
Did your clergy session approve any openly gay candidates for ministry? No.
Number of clergy retired: 20
Membership stands at 2020: 83,757. 2019: 89,483 Down 5,726
Worship attendance stands at: 2020: 21,242 onsite + 67,108 online = 88,360 total
2019: 31,119 onsite + 5,711 online = 36,830 total. Total = Up 31,520
Church school attendance stands at 2020: 5,887. 2019: 8,971. Down 3,084
Professions of faith for 2020: 523. 2019: 1,097 Down 574
Adults and young adults in small groups for 2020: 18,603. 2019: 28,158. Down 9,555
Worshippers engaged in mission for 2020: 406,766. 2019: 503,081. Down: 96,315
— John W. Coleman, Eastern Pennsylvania Conference communications director
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