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Graphic of terms used during General Conference 2016 by Laurens Glass, courtesy of  United Methodist Communications.

Illustration by Laurens Glass for United Methodist Communications.

Some of the common terms of General Conference 2016.

Want to learn about General Conference 2016? We’ve got you covered!


When the top legislative body of The United Methodist Church gathers May 10-20 for General Conference 2016, it will vote on issues facing the denomination. The conference can revise church law, as well as adopt resolutions on current moral, social, public policy and economic issues.

The list below has links to all the background materials you need to gain a better understanding of General Conference 2016. To learn all the ways you can get daily news from GC2 2016 as it unfolds, follow this link.

1) PDF guide to the event – Features a brief history of General Conference; a day-by-day, hour-by-hour schedule of events; information on special worship services and events; structure of the church; tracking legislation, and more. Download PDF now.

2) Glossary of terms – Our online glossary gives you key terms and definitions of words used by the church’s top legislative body.

3) Online course: Exploring General Conference – Free and for you to do at your own pace, this online course teaches about the official decision-making body of The United Methodist Church and explores many aspects of General Conference in anticipation of the 2016 session. (Register until June 30.)

4) Pre-General Conference Briefing video archive – In January, delegates gathered for the Pre-General Conference Briefing hosted by United Methodist Communications. They focused on issues that will be at the center of GC2016. Nineteen videos highlight different topics facing delegates in May. Be sure to click the menu in the upper left corner of the video player for a list.

5) Resources for General Conference delegates – Are you attending? United Methodist Communications offers a toolkit of resources to assist delegates in sharing their experience with their conferences and other media outlets. Find articles on blogging, pitching stories and using social media. Download logos and photos to enhance your communications. Find everything on our landing page.

6) General Conference 2016 website – The official site of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church contains valuable information about the church’s governing body. Do you want to know how General Conference works? The major legislative issues for 2016? More about the legislative process? The site has a many articles to help guide you through the process.

7) General Conference 2016 mobile app – Connect with General Conference on your cellphone. Find news stories, videos, resources and more on our new and improved mobile app.

8) Telling the Story of General Conference – In 1939, delegates at the first General Conference laid the building blocks for United Methodist Communications. Moving from typewriters to live-streaming video, digital technology has made General Conference a truly worldwide event.

Special Note: You can stay informed of General Conference 2016 news, as well as the mission and ministry of The United Methodist Church around the globe, through our Daily and Weekly Digest emails. Produced by United Methodist News Service, it's a great resource to share with your church members as well!