Sunday, July 13, 2008

1952 Annual Conference - Richmond VA

The 2008 Annual Conference is meeting in Richmond, VA this week. It has met in Richmond four previous times in the past century: 1952, 1957, 1977, and 1992. Today we highlight the 1952 Annual Conference.

It is believed that the 1952 Annual Conference was the first with a stated theme: Teaching Them to Observe All Things. Under that theme, the Brethren discussed the future of the Bible Training School which was located at Bethany Biblical Seminary. The Training School was continued under the administration of the Seminary but with some specific guidelines and separation from the seminary.

A two year emphasis on evangelism was approved with the theme: WIN MEN TO CHRIST.

In response to a query regarding the equalization of pastor's salaries throughout the Brotherhood, the delegates adopted an answer pointing out it would be too cumbersome to create a pool of funds with assessments of congregations to carry out such a plan. The report did support the need for a minimum salary scale for all pastors.

Statements on Alcohol and Tobacco were approved.

In response to a 1949 Query that had been under study for 3 years asking for women to have equal rights with men in the ministry, such a recommendation was approved. The final answer to the query included this statement: We recommend that a woman who is the pastor of a church be granted the privileges of the ordained minister to function in the congregation of which she is pastor...."

And that's the way it was for the Brethren in Richmond, VA in 1952.

Source: 1952 Annual Conference Minutes