General and Jurisdictional Conferences

General Conference

The General Conference, the primary legislative body of The United Methodist Church, is the only body that speaks officially for the church. Meeting once every four years to determine legislation affecting connectional matters, it is composed of no fewer than 600 and no more than 1,000 delegates.

Working within the boundaries of the Church Constitution and General Rules, the General Conference defines and fixes the conditions, privileges and duties of church membership; the powers and duties of elders, deacons, diaconal ministers and local pastors; and the powers and duties of annual conferences, missionary conferences, charge conferences and congregational meetings. It authorizes the organization, promotion and administrative work of the church. The General Conference also defines the powers and duties of the episcopacy, authorizes the official hymnal and book of worship, provides a judicial system and procedures, initiates and directs all connectional enterprises of the church and enacts other legislation for the operation of the church.

The next General Conference is scheduled for May 5-15, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Jurisdictional Conference

The UMC world-wide is divided into the “Central Conferences” (non-U.S.) and the five “Jurisdictional Conferences” in the United States. These provide some program and leadership training events to support the annual conferences. Every four years the jurisdictional conferences meet to elect new bishops and select members of general boards and agencies. Wisconsin is in the North Central Jurisdictional (NCJ) Conference.

The next North Central Jurisdictional Conference is scheduled for July 15-18, 2020 in Fort Wayne, Indiana.