ALCOA, Tenn. (June 1, 2016) -- Next week, some 1,962 church leaders representing 883 congregations will gather for their annual meeting in Lake Junaluska, N.C. Here's an alphabetical primer for those attending the June 5-8 meeting ... and for those who want to keep up with the news from home.
A is for AC.Holston.org ... the web page where you can snag the “Book of Reports,” schedule or other handy info.
B is for Books ... Remember to bring one of the 7 suggested books for our “Children in Poverty” mission.
C is for Conference Choir ... That huge volunteer choir was so good last year, they’re singing at two worship services this year.
D is for “David is the Man” ... Because Rev. David Graves -- senior pastor, bishop nominee, delegation leader -- doesn’t have anything else to do, he’s preaching at the Memorial Service.
E is for EMTs ... who will be on site during sessions. If there is a medical emergency, please alert an usher or the information desk in Stuart Auditorium.
F is for Finance ... The finance committee’s got your number. If you have questions about the budget, look for people wearing green ribbons or visit the Q&A session on Monday, 5-6 p.m. in Terrace lobby.
G is for General Conference ... On Monday, our delegation will give a report on their May 10-20 denominational experience in Portland, Ore.
H is for Holy Bible ... For heaven’s sake, bring it.
I is for Inky and “inspiration" ... The speaker for Monday night, Inky Johnson, has a story to share about poverty, football, tragedy, faith.
J is for Jubilee Project ... As this Hancock County mission celebrates its 25th anniversary, Director Linda Stransky will speak at the Missions Dinner on Monday night.
K is for ... We had this person's name in here to get special recognition but we found out that it's a surprise, so ... we took it out.
L is for Live Stream ... If you can’t attend Annual Conference (or your Adirondack chair is too comfy to get out of), you can still watch. Find a link to the live stream at AC.Holston.org.
M is for Money ... Please take your money (church word: offering) for Change for Children to the table outside Stuart Auditorium on Tuesday, 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Please take your “Children in Poverty” money (church word: gift) to the Missions Celebration on Tuesday night at 7 p.m.
N is for News ... Of course, we’ll print a newspaper every day at Annual Conference. For links to online news, visit TheCall.Holston.org or Facebook.Holston.org. Also follow us on Twitter @TheCall_Holston and Instagram @thecall_holston. #holstonac16
O is for Ordination ... The Wednesday ordination service will feature 6 ordinands (plus 1 with orders recognized), 8 provisionals, 1 deacon, and 1 associate member. On Tuesday, 24 local pastors will be licensed.
P is for Poverty ... The poor will always be with us. We’ll celebrate a year of reaching out to local children in poverty and kick off another year of focusing on school partnerships.
Q is for “Quick! Get a camera!” ... Was that your pastor running by, wearing short shorts and a glaze of perspiration? Look for photos from Tuesday morning’s 5K run/ 1-mile walk to be posted later in the day at Facebook.Holston.org.
R is for Retirement Recognition ... Hats off to 28 good and faithful servants. Tuesday at 11 a.m.
S is for Society of St. Andrew ... We don’t know what it is yet (potatoes? green beans?), but there’s a crop drop on Tuesday during lunchtime in the Open Gym. Donate $5 or more to help with transportation costs and/or come help bag produce for the hungry.
T is for Trucks ... That moment when we celebrate another wildly successful “Hands-on Mission Project” with the honk of a horn? Yeah, it’s Monday morning.
U is for United Methodist ... We just like that word, united.
V is for Vendors ... This year’s lunchtime food court between Harrell Center and Stuart Auditorium will include: Bojangles, Lenoir Creek Beef, and sandwiches from Lake Junaluska food service.
W is for Water ... Bring your reusable water bottle to Stuart Auditorium, where fresh agua will be available to keep you moist.
X is for eXhibits ... Want to see a grown United Methodist cry? Ignore the 44 exhibitors in Harrell Center auditorium who came all this way to see you. (We hope you won't!)
Y is for Youth ... The Conference Council on Youth Ministries will host “Youth Night” at 8:30 p.m. Monday in Shackford Hall. (Y is also for “Yea!”)
Z is for Zip ... We've got to zip it up and go. Annual Conference time is here.
Another alphabetical list for Annual Conference 2014
Annette Spence is editor of The Call, the Holston Conference newspaper.