Methodists ponder cost, size of their quadrennial convention

Rising expenses
The United Methodists gather as a legislating body only every four years, but officials say the General Conference is becoming so costly that they are thinking about new ways to function as an increasingly global church.

The 2008 meeting April 23–May 2 in Fort Worth, Texas, is expected to cost $6.6 million—a jump from the $5.3 million it took to hold the 2004 assembly in Pittsburgh. That higher bill is expected despite the fact that the length of the General Conference will be cut from 12 to 10 days.

The event’s planning commission, meeting in mid-November near the site of the 2012 convention in Tampa, was told that the General Conference in Florida could exceed $9 million in expenses, according to the United Methodist News Service.


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