South Central Jurisdictional Conference Wrap-Up
Newly Elected Bishops
It took a record 35 ballots to elect all 3 bishops.

Rev. Dr. Ruben Saenz, Jr. of the Rio Texas Conference
Click here for an article about Bishop Saenz

Rev. Dr. Jimmy Nunn of the NWTX Conference
Click here for an article about Bishop Nunn

Rev. Bob Farr of the Missouri Conference
Bishop Assignments
  • Arkansas: Bishop Gary E. Mueller
  • Central Texas: Bishop J. Michael Lowry
  • Great Plains: Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.
  • Louisiana: Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey
  • Missouri: Bishop Robert "Bob" Farr
  • North Texas - Bishop Michael McKee

  • Northwest Texas/New Mexico - Bishop Earl Bledsoe

  • Oklahoma/Okla Indian Missionary : Bishop James G (Jimmy) Nunn
  • Rio Texas: Bishop Robert C. Schnase
  • Texas: Bishop Scott J. Jones 

Council of Bishops President Response to Election of Rev. Oliveto
     The Western Jurisdiction has elected the Rev. Karen Oliveto of Glide Memorial United Methodist Church in San Francisco to serve as a bishop of The United Methodist Church. Rev. Oliveto has been described as "an openly lesbian clergyperson." This election raises significant concerns and questions of church polity and unity.
     Our Book of Discipline has clearly delineated processes in place for resolving issues even as complex and unprecedented as this election.
     The authority to elect bishops is constitutionally reserved to the jurisdictional and central conferences. Any elder in good standing is eligible for election as a bishop of the church. An elder under an unresolved complaint is still considered to be in good standing. Being a self-avowed, practicing homosexual is a chargeable offense for any clergyperson in The United Methodist Church, if indeed this is the case.
     The Council of Bishops is monitoring this situation very closely. The Council does not have constitutional authority to intervene in the election or supervisory processes at either the annual conference, jurisdictional or central conference levels. And, we are careful to not jeopardize any clergy or lay person's due process by ill-advised comments.

South Central Jurisdiction Votes to Seek Declaratory Decision
Prayer huddle following passage of the motion

Following the election of openly gay clergy person in the Western Jurisdiction, Rev. Karen Oliveto, Lay Delegate from Great Plains Conference, Dixie Brewster moved to seek a declaratory decision from the Judicial Council regarding the election.  The motion passed by a vote of 109 to 84. A young lay person asked for a time of conciliatory prayer which encompassed most of the delegates.  

NM Conference Delegate, Susan Brumbaugh Reports on Mission 21 
Susan Brumbaugh - Mission 21 Report
The Mission 21 Task Force was created to compile data & consider options for specific realignment of episcopal areas because: (1) it is very likely that the SCJ will be required in 2020 to make a reduction in its number of bishops based on expected membership declines within the jurisdiction, and (2) the 2012 General Conference changed the timing to require implementation by September of the first year of the quadrennium rather than the fourth year of the quadrennium. It is imperative that the 2016 Jurisdictional Conference make decisions that allow the SCJ to be prepared for implementation when and if a mandate for episcopal reductions comes. 
From the Mission 21 Report
"We recommend that the 2016 Jurisdictional Conference make the contingent decision
that would result in the reduction of an episcopal area in advance of any mandate from General Conference. Note that the Task Force does NOT recommend that the 2016 Jurisdictional Conference formally decide to pursue the strategy of requesting a missional exception to any future requirement for reductions to the number of bishops within the SCJ.  Given the implementation timing surrounding any future mandate, it is imperative that the Jurisdictional Conference be prepared to proceed with a specific recommendation.  We recommend that the 2016 Jurisdictional Conference approve one of the following options for realignment of episcopal areas within the SCJ 
First Choice-The Missional Option:
Redraw the five existing episcopal areas (six annual conferences) in TX and NM as four  
episcopal areas with.  Major considerations: Mission, cultural affinity, creativity, position for the future and episcopal balance.  Please see report for proposed maps. 
Alternate Choice-The Pairing Option:  Pair the NWTX Annual Conference with the Central TX Annual Conference as one episcopal area and the NMAC with the Rio TX Annual Conference. 
We recommend that the 2016 Jurisdictional Conference establish a new task force for  
implementation of any changes approved by the Jurisdictional Conference."

The Missional Option was approved as a starting place to consider realignment, if necessary.  Click here to read the full report   

What Draws People to Church? Poll has Insights
by Heather Hahn of UMNS
...The couple, both in their 20s, are not unique in what they look for in congregational life. Opportunities for spiritual growth and authentic community are top motivators for churchgoing, says a newly released survey conducted by Barna Group on behalf of United Methodist Communications.
     Barna's study sought insights about what young-adult spiritual "seekers" in the United States expect from churches. The Christian research organization defined these seekers as Americans currently ages 18 to 34 who are not active churchgoers or committed to a congregation but nevertheless indicate interest in spiritual matters.
Survey respondents cited the following top reasons to head to church:
  • Church helps my spiritual development (39 percent)
  • Opportunity to find out more about God (38 percent)
  • Opportunity to make friends and nurture friendships (38 percent)
  • Knowing that anyone will be welcomed into the church community (38 percent)
  • Opportunity for support during difficult times (37 percent)
     David Kinnaman, president of Barna and director of the study, said church leaders can use the findings to offer genuine community for young seekers across life experiences.

Click here to read the full article 

Seeking Administrative Assistant for District Offices
Seeking a qualified person with good people skills to provide administrative support, coordination and office integration for 3 regional directors. This part-time position (30 hours per week) is located in Albuquerque New Mexico.
For more details, go to:  
Send Professional Resume including references to:  
Rev. James E. Large
11816 Lomas Blvd. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87112


>Aug. 6 & 20 
>Aug. 26-27
>Sept. 9-10
>Sept. 9
>Sept. 9 
>Sept. 10-11
>Sept. 10
>Sept. 12
>Sept. 13  
>Sept. 23-24
>Sept. 23-25 
>Oct 2-5
>Oct 19-21 
Lay Servant School
Lay Servant School
Lay Servant School
Church Historian Training
Heritage Tour
CLM Training Begins
UMM-Fall Retreat
Fall Clergy Retreat
Coaching - Basic Training
St. Paul's UMC-El Paso
St. Luke's - El Paso
St. John's - ABQ
St. John's - ABQ
Center Street - Tucumcari
FUMC - Artesia

Conference Calendar
UMC website


New Mexico Annual Conference  

11816 Lomas Blvd. NE Albuquerque, NM 87112

Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Receptionist Hours: 9:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.

(800) 678-8786 toll free; (505) 255-8786; (505) 265-6184 fax

 Click here to view our staff listing  



Please send photos, articles, events, etc. to Alli Costello, Communications Director at  Send classified ads to