The 129th session of the General Board of The Wesleyan Church met at the denominational headquarters in Fishers, Indiana.
Dr. Jo Anne Lyon, General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church, called the meeting to order at the beginning of the two-day meetings.
Some of the important actions passed during the meeting included:
- Dennis Jackson, Jarvis Ferguson, and Benjamin Galarce presented a resolution to approve a proposal for the 19 countries of the Ibero-American Area to become an established regional conference. This action will be recommended to the 2016 North American General Conference and the 2019 International Conference for final action. (Countries would include Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Spain, Guatemala, Equatorial Guinea [Africa], Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, and Puerto Rico, along with the mission units, churches, and developing districts of Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador, Honduras, Dominican Republic, and Venezuela.)
- H.C. Wilson, district superintendent of the Atlantic District, presented a proposal approving The Wesleyan Church of Canada as an established national conference and recommending the same to the 2016 North American General Conference.
Dr. Lyon also shared encouraging news regarding the number of pastors ordained within The Wesleyan Church in the summer of 2015 totaled 124. She also spoke of ministries being led by women. One example is that of Red Cedar Church in Rice Lake, Wisconsin, led by senior pastor, Rev. Heather Semple. Church attendance now totals 1,600 with 196 baptized lately.
Dr. Lyon also noted that attendance, conversions, baptisms, and membership continue to increase across the denomination. Immigrant Connection was also mentioned, as she referenced Zack Szmara, a pastor in Logansport, Ind., who has assisted in processing 300 immigrants. Close to 20 people within The Wesleyan Church are now trained to assist immigrants.
Board members separated into five groups to discuss General Conference memorials, preparatory to taking further action on them during the spring 2016 meeting.
C.K. Chitty was named CEO of Hephzibah Ministries for four more years.
Kevin Batman, General Treasurer/CFO of The Wesleyan Church, gave several reports detailing the Church’s financial position, as well as the request to accept the Church’s audit report.
Trustees for the colleges and universities were newly elected:
- Houghton College: Greg McLain, Clifton Seaman, Lyn Barnett, David Markle, and Kevin Batman.
- Kingswood University: Barbara Farrow, Patrick Styers, Peter Moore, and Paul Piraino.
- Indiana Wesleyan University: Shawn Cossin, Mark Eckart, Paul Anthes, Chris Conrad, Petra Ray, Michael Carmichael, and John Bray.
- Oklahoma Wesleyan University: Wes Smith, Tom Harrison, Fran Gonzales, James Occhipinti, Verla Powers, and Rob Swagger.
- Southern Wesleyan University: William Benton, Louise Carlton, Thomas Cayace, Joseph Dongell, Benji Kelley, John Ott, and Donna Madden.