General Council recently met May 29-31, 2015 at the Seventh Day Baptist church in Ashaway, RI. Members of the Coordinating Leadership Team (CLT) joined the meeting on Friday. Each member of CLT shared the status of their current programs and budgets as well as their vision for 2016. There is a lot of good work underway and exciting ideas for new programs in 2016. The group spent some time in prayer for each area and their supporting Councils, as well as coordinated plans for this year’s General Conference session in Lancaster, PA July 26-Aug 1st.
Following the joint session on Friday, members of General Council and the CLT visited Pawcatuck, Ashaway, Pine Street Gospel, and Waterford churches on Sabbath Day. The General Council resumed on Saturday evening and Sunday morning to work through some additional agenda items. It was a full and productive meeting, here are some of the highlights:
- It was voted to hire Pat Cruzan as Sabbath Recorder editor (no longer interim) for a renewable three year contract effective June 1, 2015.
- General Council will recommend renewing another 3 year term for our SDB Executive Director, Rob Appel. Following his recent spiritual retreat, Rob shared that he believes God wants him to continue serving in this capacity.
- A new and improved SDB website to be released soon was reported and approval given to move forward with plans for live streaming at General Conference this year.
- It was voted to recommend the merger of SDB General Conference with Historical Society effective January 2016 with the first reading of the necessary By-law changes this year at Conference.
- General Council approved funding for the MULTIPLY Church Development Conference in Colorado Springs October 22-25, 2015, providing an exciting opportunity for leadership training in this area.
- The Nominating Committee has completed a slate of nominations ready to share at the beginning of Conference and were complementary of how the new process worked for them as they met monthly via tele-conference to complete this work.
- The Church Planting Co-Worker Program was approved, similar to the Ministry Staff Development program already in place, to assist those who are called to assist SDB church plants.
- The SDB Vision Map was discussed and some wording modifications were made based on feedback received. A modified draft will be presented at Conference as feedback continues to be solicited during the coming year.
- 30 out of 41 of the 2014 Conference Action Items have been completed. Of the remaining, 6 are started but still in progress and 5 have been deferred due to lower priority and current lack of resources.
The General Council will hold a teleconference the evening of July 7 and meet in person Sunday morning, July 26, before Conference. The General Council and Coordinating Leadership Team look forward to spending time with as many of you as possible during the General Conference sessions coming up at Lancaster Bible College in Lancaster, PA. You can contact the General Council members at firstname.lastname@example.org and the Coordinating Leadership Team at email@example.com with any concerns or questions.