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Your opportunities to pray for GC

December 5, 2011

 

From Newscope
Vol. 39, Issue 48 / NOVEMBER 30, 2011

Contributed by the General Board of Discipleship

PRAYING FOR 2012 GENERAL CONFERENCE

When delegates to General Conference 2012 meet in Tampa next April, UMs around the world will be able to join them in an unprecedented concert of prayer, seeking God’s will for their decisions. The Upper Room, a division of the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD), will once again provide a Prayer Guide for delegates, participants and guests of the General Conference. This time, however, the guide for GC2012 also will be available free of charge on The Upper Room website for all 12.3 million UMs worldwide. The use of technology will help the entire church surround the elected delegates, Council of Bishops and general church staff with prayer.

Traditionally, The Upper Room’s Prayer Guide has covered the 40 days prior to the General Conference. In 2012, however, the guide will include the additional 10 days that the General Conference will be in session. The guide will be translated into the official languages of the conference-English, French and Portuguese-andit will be included in the official program book for GC2012. The text will be made available to the bishops for translation into other languages as well.

In addition to overseeing the Prayer Support effort, The Upper Room will for the first time provide guidance and training to engage every local church around the world in prayer for the General Conference through online learning.

Each member of The UMC worldwide is being asked to begin praying now for the elected delegates to General and Jurisdictional Conferences as they do their work in preparation of the 2012 events and to pray for God’s will to be clearly discerned by everyone involved in the decisions that will be made at General Conference.

A prayer website http://www.gbod.org/site/c.nhLRJ2PMKsG/b.7678911/k.9826/Pray_for_General_Conference.htm maintained by GBOD contains information, guidance and suggestions to help UMs pray together in new and meaningful ways. In Tampa, there will be a labyrinth, a prayer room and prayer stations at different places in the convention center so people can be reminded of the spiritual importance of this event and the community of prayer that will be surrounding them as they do their work.

As a part of the Prayer Ministry Team, trained spiritual guides will be present at GC2012 if the delegates, staff members or participants need someone to provide spiritual guidance and direction or to help them in their discernment process.

Additional resources will be added to the GBOD website during the months leading up to General Conference, including the Prayer Guide, suggestions for prayer and information about how to mobilize entire congregations to support GC2012 in prayer.

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