To: Ohio Conference Credentialed Ministers, Delegates and Congregations
From: Ohio Conference Leadership Team
Subject: Thank You and Update from 2023 Annual Conference Assembly
Date: March 7, 2023
The Ohio Conference Leadership Team would like to thank all of our credentialed ministers, delegates and congregations for the hard work of Christian discernment that has taken place over the past year, beginning in April 2022 and through our 2023 Annual Conference Assembly this past weekend. The presence of the Holy Spirit has been sensed all along the way in how we have interacted with one another, seeking to discern God’s will for us as a Conference.
As the Leadership Team we felt quite certain that if the percentage reached on either one of the two scenarios to be presented as a resolution at ACA (#1 – remain affiliated with MC USA or #2 – withdraw from MC USA, become temporarily independent and spend 2-to-3 years seeking a new affiliation) was not at least a 2/3 majority, that would be an indication that God’s will for us as a Conference regarding future affiliation is not clear at this time.
After reviewing the feedback we had received throughout the discernment process, especially at the Winter Delegate Meetings and at ACA after the three traffic light surveys, the Leadership Team felt that Scenario #2 – withdraw from MC USA – was the scenario that had the best opportunity to reach a 2/3 majority. There were 148 delegates present (representing 35 of our 41 congregations) who voted on the resolution to withdraw from MC USA. The results were: 81 yes votes for 54.7%, 67 no votes for 45.3%, and 3 abstentions.
We understand that there are many different feelings, thoughts and questions from our delegates and congregations after the Assembly. The Leadership Team is scheduled to meet this Thursday, March 9, 2023, to assess where we are at in our two-year review process and to discuss the Assembly and the feedback we received from our delegates regarding moving forward together as a Conference. You can anticipate receiving further information to share with your congregations within the next week.