I (Pastor Lorinda) had planned to share these photos in worship on Sunday, when Ed and I shared about the amazing things that God is doing through Iowa United Methodists, which we experienced at Annual Conference. But technical difficulties prevented that. Here, then, are the photos that went with what we shared on Sunday.
All photos are © 2015 by the Iowa Annual Conference. They are shared here with permission.
A view of the floor of Annual Conference, taken from the back of the floor. Ed and I were at tables near the front on the left.
Our theme was “Therefore GO and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19)
Adam Hamilton, pastor of Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas. He lead three powerful teaching sessions with us. Members of his congregation were praying for us this month.
The Gospel Choir from Roosevelt High School in Des Moines sang at the Laity Session which Ed attended. They were truly inspirational.
Bishop Rodger Prois of the Western Iowa Synod of the ELCA was the ecumenical presence at the Ordination Service on Sunday. Ed was especially taken by his statement that the church is at its best when it goes outside the walls. It was particularly meaningful for me (Lorinda) to have Bishop Prois with us that day, as he is my husband’s bishop. (My husband is an ELCA pastor).
Rebecca Fisher is our Leadership Development Minister for Evangelism and New Ministry Development. She led a Bible Study on Tuesday and got us all fired up with her energy and enthusiasm.
We celebrated 25 years of the Iowa Nigeria Partnership, the longest running partnership between two United Methodist Conferences (regions) in our denomination’s history. Together we have built schools and clinics, drilled wells, education Nigerian leaders, and provided layettes for new mothers. The folks pictured above have all traveled to Nigeria at least once in the last 25 years.
In Nigeria, folks come forward to give their offering, and usually dance which doing so. We didn’t do quite so well on the dancing, but we did come forward to give our offering to the Iowa Nigeria partnership.
We celebrated our involvement in Imagine No Malaria, the United Methodist effort to eliminate malaria in Africa. We received a plaque from the General Church celebrating the fact that we exceeded our 2 million dollar goal for Imagine No Malaria. Together with United Methodists and other organizations we have cut the number of malaria deaths in half in Africa!
Bishop Julius C. Trimble is the bishop of the Iowa Annual Conference. He presided over our business and shared the gospel message with us. Our charge, he says, is to “Love the people…all the people.”
As one way of “loving the people,” the Bishop’s Poverty to Opportunity Task force has challenged our Annual Conference to “Change a child’s story.” by giving books to lower income children and helping children learn to read. These two simple acts can dramatically change a child’s future.