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OR-ID Plenary: Insurance, Abundant Health, and Christian Conferencing

Bishop Elaine JW Stanovsky presides over the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference plenary session with Paul Cosgrove, Conference Chancellor.


By the Rev. Karen Hernandez | Photos by Patrick Scriven and Jesse N. Love

In our Friday morning plenary session, the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference (strengthened and renewed by a more substantial breakfast, thanks be to God!) worked through some of our more complicated legislation. We completed voting on the standing and action resolutions sent to us through the Legislative Assembly.

We received the report and motions of the Council on Finance and Administration  and the Board of Pensions and Health Benefits, including their proposals for some significant changes in health insurance coverage. Those insured through the conference plan will now have a choice of among six insurance plans, while the premiums paid by churches go up very slightly and are not based on the particular plan chosen by the plan participants. (God gives us a variety of gifts. Figuring out the nitty-gritty details of insurance and finances is not among my gifts! Thanks be to God for the hard work, wisdom, and faithful stewardship of those who serve on CF&A!)

We also voted on AR-8 (which replaced AR-7). The goal was to remove the specific language of staffing and budgeting in order to proceed in ways that are more useful as our commitment to Abundant Health evolves.

On Thursday, AR-5, regarding the Ministry Leadership Team was removed from the consent calendar. When asked today, the Rev. Lowell Greathouse offered insight regarding the purpose of this legislation, which is to reinvigorate and restructure the Ministry Leadership Team after a time of inactivity and uncertainty. The motion passed with overwhelming support.

Bishop Elaine gracefully led us in “Christian conferencing,” helping us to move swiftly through these topics and noting that, as our time neared its end, “the huns are at the door.” We were happy to be joined by our kindred in The Pacific Northwest Conference for the remainder of our morning plenary time.


The Rev. Karen Hernandez serves as pastor of pastor of Kuna United Methodist Church.
Special thanks to the Rev. Eilidh Lowery.

Patrick Scriven serves as the director of Communications, Young People’s Ministries for the PNWUMC.
Jesse N. Love serves as the graphic designer and print manager for the PNWUMC.

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