Monday, July 14, 2008

1957 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 1957 Annual Conference.

The 1957 Annual Conference finalized a report that was in process for five years responding to a 1952 Query regarding the functions of an Elder. The adopted report reaffirmed three degrees in the ministry: the licensed ministry, the ordained ministry, and the ordained eldership. The degree of Elder would continue for another ten years with diminishing functionality within the church.

Reported on a study regarding the Peace Position of the Church with a finding that 94% of pastors stated they held the peace position and only 21% reported any serious opposition to it in their churches. A revised Statement of the Church of the Brethren on War was adopted.

Answered a 1954 Query regarding church membership, statistics, and stewardship assessments by classifying church membership, suggesting minimum standards for Christian discipleship, and encouraging diligent stewardship.

Established dates for the 1958 Annual Conference celebrating the church's 250th anniversary in Des Moines, Iowa and naming official representatives to the 1958 convocation in Germany.

Source: 1957 Annual Conference Minutes