2018 Annual Conference


June 15-17, 2018
Hampton Roads Convention Center
Hampton, VA

Link to livestream

The 2018 session of the Virginia Annual Conference will be held June 15-17 at the Hampton Roads Convention Center. 


Annual Conference Wrap Up
Click here to view a wrap-up of Annual Conference 2018 (pdf)

Annual Conference Survey
Please complete the 2018 annual conference survey by June 30 for a report to the annual conference planning committee at its evaluation meeting. Your feedback will assist with plans for the 2019 annual conference. The survey may be accessed at  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HJCNBGR 

News from Annual Conference 2018
Friday morning - The Rev. Tom Berlin and report from the Commission on a Way Forward  
Friday afternoonBishop Lewis convenes 236th session of conference
Friday evening - A Service of Remembrance and Holy Communion
Saturday morning - Retirement Service 
Saturday afternoon - View some great pictures from the Great Day of Service! 
Saturday evening - Service for the Ordering of Ministry  
Sunday morning - Business, worship, appointments

2018-2019 Appointments (pdf)

Annual Conference Overview includes Great Day of Service information 

Bishop Lewis' Recommended Reading
Developing an Intentional Discipleship System: A Guide for Congregations by Junius B. Dotson
Engaging Your Community: A Guide to Seeing All the People by Junius B. Dotson
From Membership to Discipleship: Grow Maturing Disciples Who Make Disciples by Phillip Maynard

Great Day of Service
Following the Mission Service on Saturday, June 16, Bishop Lewis is asking all clergy and lay members to participate in a Great Day of Service from 2 to 5 p.m. This event will be broken into three sections: ministry within the City of Hampton, United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) kit building in the convention center, and presentations on social justice issues at the convention center. Each clergy and lay member will be asked to sign up for one of these activities prior to Annual Conference. Registration is forthcoming. Each participant will receive a T-shirt to be worn during the Great Day of Service. How will you help create an impact on the Hampton Roads area with your service? Click here to read more about the Great Day of Service. Learn more about the special day with a series of three "teaser" videos

There have been some questions regarding the $10 donation for persons participating in a Great Day of Service at annual conference.  As noted on the registration, this donation helps to defray the cost of a t-shirt for participants, health kits, transportation, and other expenses associated with the Great Day of Service.  Please contact Marc Brown at marcbrown@vaumc.org if the amount of this donation prevents your participation in this event.
Great Day of Service flyer (pdf)
Great Day of Service flyer (jpg)
Online Registration is now closed. Registrations will still be accepted at Annual Conference.  There are an unlimited number of spaces available for the Social Justice forums in the Convention Center, and still a few spots left out in the community.  The kits assembly is completely full.

Sign up to Volunteer for All Conference Activities
The Sign-Up is live! Serve at Annual Conference 2018. There's never been one like it! Come join in the mission and ministry! It promises to be a weekend full of worship, service, fellowship, and friendship. Volunteers living out our faith in service are key to it's success!  Just click on this link to volunteer: I'm in! 

Book of Reports
Click here to download a copy of this year's Book of Reports (pdf)

Click here to view the 2018 Agenda of the Annual Conference (pdf)

Consent Agenda
Click here to view the Consent Agenda (pdf). Conference Standing Rule II.E states that the Consent Agenda is to include “agenda items and reports not requiring action by the Annual Conference other than a vote to receive said items for publication in the Journal. . . . An individual item may be removed from the Consent Agenda at the request of no less than 30 members of the annual conference.  The process for making that request will be determined by the Consent Agenda Committee, and the deadline for such requests will not be prior to ten minutes after the call to order of the annual conference session.”  The Consent Agenda Committee has determined that the deadline for requests of items to be removed from the Consent Agenda is 3:30 p.m. Friday, June 15.  Motion forms to request removal of items from the Consent Agenda, at the front of the stage, must be returned to the “secretarial inbox” at the corner of the stage by the established deadline.

Constitutional Amendment
The clergy and lay members of the 2018 Virginia Annual Conference will be voting on one Constitutional Amendment. General Conference Secretary Gary Graves, in an email to conference secretaries, said, "It is imperative that this vote occur during the very next session of your annual conference (2018 or prior to May, 2019)."  Members of the Virginia Annual Conference will vote on the corrected proposed constitutional amendment at Annual Conference, Friday, June 15 at 5 p.m.  The vote isn't listed in the Book of Reports as the error in wording was discovered after the book was printed. Click here to view Amendment (pdf).

Alternate Member Form
The Lay Annual Conference Members attending 2018 Annual Conference will receive a mailed packet of 2018 Annual Conference information.  In the event of a change in lay member attending 2018 Annual Conference, the conference mailed packet should be given to the alternate lay member attending 2018 Annual Conference.  Lay members who are attending as alternates are required to present a completed Alternate Member Form 2018 to the Registration Trouble Shooting Desk during Registration.  In turn, name badges will be printed that identify them as lay members.  Alternates are responsible for obtaining materials mailed to the persons whom they are replacing.  A Book of Reports may be purchased for five dollars at annual conference by persons who do not have a copy.
Click here to download an alternate local church lay member form (pdf)
Click here to download an alternate district at-large lay member form (pdf)

Order DVDs, Advocate, Journal, Directory
Click here to download a form (pdf) to place orders from the conference Communications Office which includes Advocate subscriptions, conference DVDS, Directory of Ministry and the Journal.

Virtual Promo Packet
Click here to view the 2018 Promo Packet 
In an effort to be good stewards of the environment and  the financial resources of the conference, the annual conference “promo packets” will continue to be virtual. Electronic copies will be accepted for inclusion in the Virtual Promo Packet, which will be posted on the conference website, www.vaumc.org under Resources>2018 Annual Conference Information. The Virtual Packet will be available for viewing on the website beginning June 1. Those organizations still wishing to disseminate their information in a hard-copy format (and who qualify, according to the Display Guidelines) may arrange for a display table at the Hampton Convention Center by contacting the Rev. Eric Vaudt at 757-759-7484 or EricVaudt@vaumc.org. Display guidelines and a Display Request form are available on the 2018 Annual Conference Information page of the conference website.  Information for the Virtual Promo Packet needs to be submitted in pdf format to the Office of Connectional Ministries (BevMyers@vaumc.org) for approval by Friday, May 18.

Daily Advocate 
At the 2018 Annual Conference, due to increased printing costs and a tighter Annual Conference session, there will be no Daily Advocate. This small publication is a one page (front and back) handout given out at the beginning of each day. The Communications Office is aware that members typically use these sheets to report Annual Conference news back to their churches. Every year, Madeline Pillow, Director of Communications and Advocate editor, creates a report for the United Methodist News Service the following Monday or Tuesday after Annual Conference. Conference attendees will receive this report as an aid for their local church reports by their email. This report will also be posted on ClergyNet and LaityNet, the conference website and social media. 

Livestreaming of Conference Sessions and Sunday Worship
Annual Conference will be available on livestream again this year and local churches will also be invited to participate in Sunday morning worship led by Bishop Sharma Lewis. Information about the Sunday service is listed below.
Link to live stream beginning June 15 at 9 a.m.

Participate in Sunday Morning Worship Service Bulletin
Local churches may show the live video of the Annual Conference worship service during their Sunday morning worship services and participate by following the liturgy for the service. Click here to download the bulletin in pdf format. Click here to download the bulletin in Word. The Annual Conference Planning Committee will be holding all participants in prayer.

Clergy Pictorial Directory
Photos All clergy, diaconal ministers, certified professionals, those serving as pastoral supply, retired bishops and conference staff have the opportunity to have their photos taken this year. Remember Church Directories will have a booth in the exhibit hall at Annual Conference on Friday, June 15, and Saturday, June 16, to take photos. No reservations are needed.  For more information, contact Madeline Pillow, director of Communications, at MadelinePillow@vaumc.org, (804) 521-1113 or 1-800-768-6040, ext. 113.  

Hashtags, once your phone’s pound sign, now have a place on most popular social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Instagram, and Pinterest. The hashtag is likely the most popular means of categorizing content on social media. It makes your own content discoverable and allows you to find relevant content from other people and businesses. The hashtag also allows you to connect with and engage other social media users based on a common theme or interest. So follow/engage in this year's Virginia Annual Conference session on social media using #vaumc18

Join Crackers & Grape Juice podcast for pre-Annual Conference party
Join Crackers & Grape Juice (C&GJ) podcast team on Thursday, June 14 in Hampton, Va. for an evening of theology and laughter at their Annual Conference kick-off party. This year's theme is "What We Talk About When We Talk About God." Guests will include Dr. Johanna Hartelius and Dr. Kendall Soulen. This year's live podcast recording is sponsored by Wesley Theological Seminary and will be held at Bull Island Brewing Company and is free from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. For more information and to register your attendance, visit their Facebook page. The first 50 people to arrive at the event will receive a C&GJ pint glass. More... 

Kindred Project retreat at Annual Conference
The Kindred Project is an ecumenical gathering of clergy and laity of the Virginia Conference to promote contemplative practices. For the third year in a row, the Kindred Project will be hosting a retreat prior to Annual Conference. You are invited to join on June 14, 2018 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Hampton Roads Convention Center in the conference prayer room. This is an excellent way to center in preparation for the work of the church. Retreat leaders will be the Rev. Becky Cloud; Janie Mitchell, D.Min; the Rev. Tom Frost and Joy Crawford. For further information or to RSVP please contact the Rev. Kimberly Barker-Brugman at pastorkim10@gmail.com

Housing Letter
Click here to open/download the Housing Letter (pdf)
As you look at the Annual Conference Housing Letter and consider your reservation options, you may wish to know that Annual Conference will begin earlier on Friday, June 15 than in previous years.  The Clergy and Laity Sessions begin at 10:30 a.m., and the first plenary session will begin at 2 p.m.  Also, Tom Berlin will give a presentation on the Commission on a Way Forward at 9 a.m. on Friday.
Annual Conference members, both clergy and lay, should be aware that the Annual Conference Housing Letter will be handled a bit differently this year.  No hard-copy letters will be sent by mail. All letters will be emailed to members at the email address the conference has on file for them (active clergy will receive the letter at their @vaumc.org address.) The letter will also be posted on this page.  The emails and posting of the letter will take place on February 1, 2018. However, hotels will NOT be taking reservations until Monday, Feb. 12 at 10 am.  It is incumbent upon clergy and district staff to be sure that any member who does not have an email address on file is made aware of this and provided with a copy of the letter.  This change in process will allow all annual conference members to receive the letter and review their choices prior to making their reservations.
SPECIAL NOTE TO LAITY: Please make sure your local church has entered your correct email address in the conference EVC system. This is the address that will be used to send out your housing email notice. If you are a district at-large member, the addresses will come from your district office.
Questions about housing may be directed to Tim Craft at TimCraft@vaumc.org or (540) 819-9386.

Child Care
Child care will be available at  Wesley UMC, 2510 N Armistead Avenue, Hampton. Covers children ages 0-12 years old. Deadline for registering is May 31. No walk-ins or children over the age of 12. Cost is $8 per child per session. Cost for 2 or more children per family will be $14 per session. Snacks will be provided but no meals.
Times available:
Friday - 8:30 am to 12:30 pm; 1:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Saturday - 8:00 am to 12:30 pm; 1:30 pm - 5:30 pm; 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm 
Sunday - 8:00 am to 12:30 pm
For questions regarding childcare, please contact Evonne Dickey, York River District administrator, at (757) 596-3476 or YorkRiverDistrict@vaumc.org Please access the link https://www.eiseverywhere.com/330714 to register

Kits for Conference
As your church begins preparation for collecting items for kits, there is currently an appeal from UMCOR for Hygiene, School, and Cleaning Kits only. Click here for the complete list of items and instructions on packing each kit. Collection times will be from Thursday, June 14 from noon to 8 p.m. and on Friday, June 15 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. For questions, contact the Kit Collection Coordinator, the Rev. David Magruder at Zion UMC in Seaford (York River District) at (757) 898-7417 or davidmagruder@vaumc.org. Money for the kits should be sent to Conference Treasurer, Virginia Conference UMC, PO Box 5605, Glen Allen, VA 23058. Checks should be made payable to Virginia Conference UMC. (Please note: New lists will go into effect on June 1, 2018. The lists are available at the link above.)

Bring Cans to Annual Conference
Annual Conference attendees, pastors and lay members, are encouraged to bring at least four pop-top cans of food (meat/fish, veggies/fruit or soup/stew). In addition, staple goods like cereal, flour and boxed items (think Hamburger Helper, Ramen Noodles, grits, etc.), are readily needed and acceptable. Please try to send four boxes of food from your church. Volunteers are also needed for at least one shift of two hours to receive the food that laity and clergy will be bringing for the Peninsula Food Bank. Questions may be directed to Jim Earley at revsrus@cox.netDo not mail checks to the conference office. Checks may be sent to the Rev. Jim Earley, c/o Tabernacle UMC, Poquoson, VA 23662, made out to “Food Bank." Click here to sign up to volunteer.

Display Space
To reserve display space at the Hampton Roads Convention Center for 2017 Annual Conference, please see the Display Guidelines (pdf) and send a Display Request (see links below) and check to the Rev. Eric Vaudt at the address on the form. Deadline to reserve space is May 15.
Word file    
pdf file   

Banquet Information/Requests
If you are planning a Banquet for this year's Annual Conference and would like to have your event listed in the Conference Banquet Schedule, please forward the following information to the Annual Conference Banquet Coordinator at michaelreaves@vaumc.org or mail it to Michael Reaves, Annual Conference Banquet Coordinator, c/o Fletcher's Chapel United Methodist Church, 8330 Fletcher's Chapel Road, King George, VA  22485.
1) The Name of your group or gathering
2) The Date and Time
3) The Location
4) Contact Information for those who may want more information.
If you need assistance planning your banquet, please fill out the attached "Banquet Request Form" (Word or pdf file) and forward it also.
Banquet Schedule (pdf) as of June 5, 2018

Service in Lieu of Laity Luncheon
The Board of Laity has had a considerable history and tradition of planning and creating a time for a Laity Luncheon or Banquet at Annual Conference. In support of Bishop Lewis’s call for a Great Day of Service in the City of Hampton on Saturday, June 16, 2018, the Board of Laity is requesting that clergy and laity partake of this opportunity to ministry outside the convention center, create UMCOR kits or attend social justice presentations inside the convention center and to donate a portion of their lunch funds to assist in this Day of Service. This is a time in the Virginia Conference when clergy and laity will gather and serve others. This is a time to make a difference in a different way. The Board thanks you for your openness to share your gifts this year in this way. Sign up registration will be available soon.
--Warren R. Harper, Conference Lay Leader

Annual Conference Offering 
Bishop Lewis has announced the annual conference mission offering goal of $200,000. Read her letter here or view the AC offering flyer. The Annual Conference offering will  focus on the following missional priority projects:
Cambodia: $50,000 - Church Growth and Development and Community Health & Agric. Development
Brazil: $25,000 - Shade and Fresh Water Ministry with Children
Mozambique:  $25,000 - Lay Leadership Development
Native Americans: $10,000 - Support for Volunteers in Mission teams working with Native American Ministry and Tribal Youth
Cuba Recovery: $25,000 - Hurricane Recovery for Churches in Cuba
Haiti: $25,000 - Funds to support Volunteers in Mission teams to Haiti
Puerto Rico Recovery: $25,000 - Hurricane Recovery support for Puerto Rican churches
Moscow Seminary: $15,000 - Support for student scholarships
NEW this year. You may make your annual conference offering online by clicking here  

Per Diem Voucher and EFT Payment Information Request for Annual Conference
By conference action, retirees, persons receiving their first appointment, and eligible others listed in the Book of Reports are authorized to receive reimbursement for expenses to attend Annual Conference, not to exceed $340 and subject to limitations of conference approved rates. Vouchers can be obtained by clicking here (pdf). The Conference Treasurer’s office is encouraging all reimbursements to be made by direct deposit. Instructions are attached to the voucher to make provisions for direct deposit. Vouchers will not be accepted after July 31.

Cokesbury at Annual Conference
This year, Cokesbury is again bringing a consultative retail experience to Annual Conferences with the Cokesbury Ministry Resource Centers. Click here for details (pdf).

Download Annual Conference Logo
Full color (jpg)
Red and black (jpg)
Black and white (jpg)


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Background photos courtesy of VDOT.

The Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church
10330 Staples Mill Road, Glen Allen, VA 23060
P.O. Box 5606, Glen Allen, VA 23058-5606
(804) 521-1100
Click here for directions to the Center