General Conference Excitement!


I am very excited about the opportunity to attend the 2012 quadrennial General Conference of the United Methodist Church. It is an honor to be elected. It will be a learning experience to observe the General Conference in action and be a small part of it.

I would like to comment on the proposal of changing the governing board of the UMC. It is proposed to have a 15-member competency-based board rather than a 45-member representative board as the UMC governing board. The present 45-member board consists of individuals who represent specific groups within the UMC with ethnic, gender, age, or other specific interests [ed. note: the current Connectional Table actually has 60 members]

The proposed 15-member board would consist of individuals selected at large. I believe the individuals selected at large may better focus on what is better for UMC as a whole rather than what is better for a specific interest group within the UMC. A person representing a specific interest group will tend to focus on what is best for their interest group rather than on what is best for the total body. It is very important to consider or honor the needs and views of special interest groups as it is important to serve the individual as Christ did. However, for a body made up of many specific interest groups or many individuals as is the UMC, it is best for the governing board of UMC to look at all the viewpoints and do what is best for all UMC. I believe a governing board composed of persons selected from UMC as a whole would better serve rather than a governing board composed of persons from specific groups.


Norm Dyer
Norm Dyer is a reserve delegate to the 2016 Western Jurisdiction Conference and will be attending General Conference as an additional reserve delegate and observer. Norm served as the 2008-12 Lay Leader of the Metropolitan District and lives in Beaverton, Oregon.