2937 Veneman Ave. Suite B150
Modesto, California 95356
2021 Annual Conference Session
When the Commission on the Annual Conference Session considered themes and scripture passages for this, our 173rd annual session of our Conference, they thought about the spirit of our California-Nevada faith family. Through tenacity, adaptation, creativity and compassion we have faced and come through the challenges of pandemic and a record-breaking fire season, standing firm in our discipleship in the name of Christ our Lord.
The word of God captured in Jeremiah 29:4-7 instructs an exiled people to carry on with life and to be fruitful, though conditions were not what they would have preferred. As a people exiled in a pandemic crisis, the California-Nevada family has indeed been fruitful and multiplied in the face of illness, loss, separation and death, while not losing sight of our future. But God calls us with our ancestors in the faith to not place the focus on ourselves. God calls us to be servant leaders who stand up in the middle of human suffering to seek the welfare of the communities where we find ourselves. Only by serving others with whom we share the journey of life will we find our own wellbeing and future.
¡Presente! is a term used widely in the Hispanic/Latino cultures that acknowledges and affirms the presence of God who is with us, and the presence of our ancestors in the faith who form a great cloud of witnesses all around us, accompanying us as we move through life. The expression ¡Presente! is also an invitation to stand and raise up our hands as a sign of our commitment to also be present for one another and the mighty cause of God’s mission of compassion, mercy, justice and peace.
There is much to celebrate as we gather for our California-Nevada Conference’s Annual Session 2021. Our reports will detail the commitment with which we have worked to be the hands and feet of God since we were last together. We will lift up those who have served in sacrificial ways. We will remember those who have passed on to join the great cloud of witnesses. We will look toward our shared future in the context of the communities where we are called to serve as we consider recommendations, legislation, and license, commission, ordain and welcome others who will lead us forward.
This is a time of change within The United Methodist Church. A time of great potential for transformation and hope because God who is ever-faithful is with us!