Plans are well underway for the 2016 North Georgia Annual Conference session, set for June 7 through 9 at The Classic Center in Athens.
This year's annual conference is a special one as North Georgia marks its sesquicentennial (150 years) with the theme "Bound for Greater Things," based on John 14:12-14.
Members and guests will celebrate the ministry of Bishop Mike Watson as he prepares to retire September 1 after eight years as bishop in the North Georgia Conference. There will be a Wednesday evening service of appreciation for the ministry of Bishop Watson and Margaret Watson followed by a reception.
Guest preacher for the annual conference will be Bishop William T. McAlilly, resident bishop of the Nashville Area of The United Methodist Church.
Other highlights include opening worship and communion at 2 pm June 7 and ordination at 7:30 pm that evening, the passing of the mantle on Wednesday morning, and a memorial service on Wednesday afternoon.
The annual conference session will follow closely on the heels of the denomination's General Conference, which will be held May 10-20 in Portland, Oregon. Members of the conference will hear a report from the North Georgia Delegation. In July, the Southeastern Jurisdiction will meet in Lake Junaluska, NC. North Georgia's next bishop will be announced at the Jurisdictional Conference.