Self-nominations for GC 2020 lay delegates opens Jan. 14
Lay church members who wish to represent the Oklahoma Conference in 2020 are invited to nominate themselves for election as Lay Delegates.
The nomination process will open online beginning Jan. 14, 2019. Those wishing to place their names in nomination are asked to complete the Oklahoma Lay Nominee Profile Form by midnight on March 10. To begin the process, visit okumc.org/LayNominees2020.
Chuck Stewart, the current Lay Leader for the conference, describes a delegate’s call as helping the church stay focused on the mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
“Your participation as a delegate,” Stewart wrote, “will afford you the opportunity not only to worship and fellowship with your global United Methodist family, but also to establish and affirm the polity and principles that guide our church as we seek the Kingdom of God.”
The Oklahoma Conference will elect seven lay and seven clergy delegates to the 2020 General Conference during the 2019 Annual Conference. An additional seven lay and seven clergy delegates also will be elected to serve as alternates to General Conference and as members of the Jurisdictional Conference.
Tradition holds that the “First Elected” delegate will serve as the point person for the entire General Conference delegation; at this election, that person will be a lay delegate.
The Book of Discipline states that lay nominees must be professing United Methodist Church members for at least two years and have participated in the UMC for at least four years by the time of their election; there are no age restrictions.
Stewart encourages lay persons to nominate themselves to serve, warning nominees of the serious work lay delegates must do.
The entire delegation will meet many times to review and educate themselves regarding issues facing the denomination both before and after General Conference, involving significant study and preparation. At General Conference, delegates will meet in committees and as an entire body; alternates will fill in for the main delegates as designated by the leader of the delegation.
“Accepting the call as a delegate representing our annual conference is not something to be taken lightly,” Stewart stated in a letter. “It is my hope that you fully understand the commitment that will be expected from you before you nominate yourself for election.”