With new cases of the Corona virus popping up in communities all over the nation and state, the Indiana Conference of The United Methodist Church has made the difficult decision to suspend the following events:
- Life Together Conference on March 23-24
- Mission and Justice Summit on March 28
- District Conferences on March 14 and 15 (Central, East, North Central, North, Southeast)
- State of the Church on March 21, 22, April 4, 19, 26
Because these are large-group gatherings, we do not want to risk potentially spreading this disease any further, especially since many of our clergy and laity work closely with vulnerable populations. Obviously, we value our time together as a Connection, but we respect our parishioners even more.
I encourage clergy to follow Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb’s request that “all non-essential gatherings are limited to fewer than 250 people.”
Board and agency meetings—and any other large gatherings—are encouraged to take place digitally. The INUMC Cabinet will continue to be meeting regularly via Zoom Meetings (video conferencing).
Churches should use their best discretion as to whether they should hold local events for their congregations. Please be in contact with your Conference Superintendent if you have questions regarding your specific events.
We have developed a task force that is meeting regularly and prayerfully considering how we should move forward as a conference in light of the Corona virus. We will reevaluate our suspension of large-group events at the end of the month. In the meantime, we will send regular (if not daily) communication with updates and resources.
Thank you for your understanding. Please join me in praying for everyone affected by this virus and for the well-being of the world as we work to fight off this pandemic.
Julius C. Trimble