During General Conference 2016, we are going to feature delegate stories from our NC Conference delegates, so you can learn more about them and the committees they will be serving.
Here are the questions we asked:
- Tell us about how you came to know Jesus.
- Tell us about your committee.
- What do you feel is important for the NC Conference to know about your committee/role at GC?
- How does this affect the people in the pews?
Today, we have Bob Bergland and Christine Dodson sharing their stories.
Being the son and grandson of pastors, as a young man, I believed there were enough pastors from our family. Boy, did the Lord surprise me! My call to the ministry occurred over time and through different people in a variety of settings, but when I finally surrendered to what God was speaking to me through them, a deep sense of peace washed over me. This call has continued to come to me and receive confirmation across over 35 years.
I have been fortunate to serve on the Faith & Order Legislative Committee. We have considered legislation focused on doctrine, ordination, and practice. This includes, but is not limited to, the Mission of the Church, and qualifications for ordination.
Serving as a pastor of a local church and also as a member of the Board of Ordained Ministry, the legislation considered in this committee holds me and those serving as ordained clergy to the highest standards of holy living.
The “Mission of the Church” which is discussed in this committee, impacts every United Methodist: “To make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.”
I came to know Jesus gradually over the years as I grew up. My family didn’t attend church, but my parents were willing to take me and drop me off so that I could go. Though I have moved closer and then further away at different periods of my life, Jesus has consistently drawn me back and closer than ever as I have grown older.
I participated in the General Administration legislative committee. Our committee was made up of 76 delegates with the responsibility for reviewing legislative petitions concerning the overall structure of the administrative function of the denomination. I chose to serve on the structure subcommittee dealing with petitions defining administrative structure of some of the general agencies and board membership for those general agencies.
It is important that the NC Conference know that the work and priorities of the general agencies are developed through a process voted in by conference delegates. There is consideration given to board direction and the way agencies work with other levels of the church by delegates. Those priorities are not just driven by agency staff separate from direction of the delegates to General Conference.
This work affects people in the pews as the general agencies develop assistance programs and direction for members and churches. In addition, consideration of Special Sundays for awareness or offering are developed in the General Administration committee and then recommended to the full session of General Conference for vote.