He Sapa Wesleyan Church’s report to the members of the General Board brought anointing, reflection, and renewal to the March 26-28, 2012 meetings. Rev. Larry Salway (pictured) gave a devotional message to the 38 board members who were meeting as a committee on memorials for the 2012 General Conference of The Wesleyan Church. This was the 120th session of the General Board.
During his presentation, Pastor Salway told moving stories of God’s blessing on the He Sapa ministries in Rapid City, South Dakota. Once a church of 8 attendees when Larry and Dale Salway became pastors in 2006, it now averages 80. But the ministry of He Sapa is far-reaching—and includes over 300 house churches.
Salway, a Lakota Native, records He Sapa services in his native language and forwards the DVDs to the house churches on the Pine Ridge, Rosebud, and Cheyenne River reservations. From the responses of house church leaders and others, Rev. Salway estimates that over 6,000 people view the sermons each week—making the extended He Sapa church one of the largest congregations in The Wesleyan Church.
The General Board actions were far reaching as well. The board recommended the necessary memorials to implement its November 2011 recommendation that The Wesleyan Church move from a three General Superintendent model and departments to a one General Superintendent model with ministry divisions.
In addition, the board made recommendations to the General Conference regarding memorials that came through The Discipline-requested appropriate sources.
In other action, the General Board voted to:
- Remove the constitutions of the following auxiliaries from The Discipline: Wesleyan Medical Fellowship, Wesleyan Women, and Wesleyan Youth.
- Remove the Wesleyan Pension Bylaws from General Board policy.
- Approve a rewrite of Wesleyan Pension Fund Bylaws.
- Dedicate the General Conference Journal to Drs. J. D. Abbott and Robert W. Lytle.
- Approve new guidelines for the editing and distribution of General Board minutes.
- Elect Rodney Benson to the Wesleyan Pension Fund Board.
- Allow subsidiary corporations not mentioned in The Discipline 4310:1 to have up to one third of their board members to be non-Wesleyan.
Dr. Ronald D. Kelly, General Secretary
The Wesleyan Church