Keep Being a Force for Mission

I’m giving up my post spot toElliott Wright this evening. He had this to say about Mrs. Louise Short, who he has encountered many times before at General Conference…

The church is to carry the Gospel around the world—keep being that force,” was the advice of 105-year-old Louise Short, honored in Tampa by the 2012 General Conference of The United Methodist Church. She is the widow of Bishop Roy Short.

Mrs. Short has attended every General Conference since 1939 when the Methodist Church (now United Methodist) was established by union of several denominations.

Introduced at the morning plenary on May 1, Mrs. Short was sitting in a wheel chair because of a case of shingles, but she stood as she received a thunderous ovation from the nearly 1,000 delegates from the US, Europe, the Philippines, and parts of Africa.

“I am praying for you and hope you are praying for me,” she said in a clear voice.

Mrs. Short, a teacher by profession, has been well-known for decades within the worldwide Methodist family. She often accompanied her husband on his episcopal trips. Bishop Roy Short, who served areas in Kentucky and Tennessee, was for years the secretary of the Council of Bishops, and one of the best known bishops in Methodism. He died in 1984.

Bishop Minerva Carcaño of Phoenix, in the chair of the conference when Mrs. Short was introduced, invoked God’s blessing upon the revered guest.

Elliott Wright is an information consultant working with the General Board of Global Ministries.

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