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What to know about Albion Special Session

Albion College's Goodrich Chapel

Members and guests of The Michigan Annual Conference will travel to Albion March 7 for a Yes-or-No vote on one General Conference petition. Here are the essential things to know upon arrival.

We look forward to your arrival at the Special Session of Annual Conference this Saturday, March 7th from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. at Goodrich Chapel on the campus of Albion College in Albion, Michigan.

Before you arrive, please review this material, including the parking map. In particular, we ask that you be considerate of the needs of those with limited mobility. 

Who is eligible to vote?
The members of this Special Session of the Michigan Annual Conference will include Elders or Deacons, Full & Provisional, Associate Members, Local Pastors currently appointed, and lay members and alternates who were last seated at the 2019 Annual Conference. Registration is now closed and there is no on-site registration. Substitutions are not allowed. 

How to obtain credentials when you arrive.
Those who registered should stop at the table outside the Goodrich Chapel front doors to pick up your credentials. In keeping with General Conference protocol, all attendees will be asked to present photo identification and sign in at the time of registration. Again, it is not possible to register on-site nor is it possible to substitute for someone who pre-registered.

Observer seating
Because of the expected number of voting members, all observers will be seated in Wesley Chapel and will watch the proceedings simulcast to a screen. The Wesley Chapel is accessed through the arch entryway of Albion First United Methodist Church. Grace Patrol members will guide you upon arrival.

Child Care

Child care will be at Albion First United Methodist Church which is attached to Goodrich Chapel. Please check your pre-registered children in at child care before coming to registration. Also, remember to pack a peanut-free snack.  Use the Albion First United Methodist church entrance under the arch. Signs and Grace Patrol members will help direct you.

What will members vote on?
Members will vote YES or NO on the following motion: 

Per the Book of Discipline of The UMC ¶507.6, the Michigan Conference of the United Methodist Church hereby sends the petition entitled “Reconciliation and Grace Through Separation and Restructuring (BOD New ¶2556)” to the 2020 General Conference.

Under Michigan Conference rules, motions to General Conference are not amendable. 

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please read any protocol materials online before arriving. We learned today that sufficient free WIFI will not be available in Goodrich Chapel to access materials online. Materials will be online, but local data charges will apply to your phone. The motion will be printed in the bulletin. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Getting to Albion
Please plan to arrive early. Doors open at 12:30 pm.

If using a mapping app, please use this address:  First United Methodist Church, 600 E. Michigan Avenue, Albion MI.  The church is attached to Goodrich Chapel which does not have a separate address.

From the east: Use exit 124 on I-94. Turn right and follow the signs to campus and parking.
From the west: Use exit 121 on I-94. Turn right and follow the signs to campus and parking.
From the north: M-99 becomes Michigan Avenue in town. Follow the signs to campus and parking.

Parking and Shuttles
We encourage you to carpool. The two lots closest to Goodrich Chapel will be designated for those with mobility issues. If you are able-bodied, your grace in selecting parking lots further away will help those who need closer parking; especially in the limited mobility designated areas. All other guests are invited to use street parking, campus and city lots. Designated lots are identified on this parking map. Four shuttles will serve all of the highlighted lots to help you get to and from the chapel. All street parking is free in Albion. A shuttle will also be driving through the neighboring streets picking up commuters.

Grace Patrol
Dozens of Grace Patrol volunteers in bright red vests will be stationed around Albion and inside Goodrich Chapel. Many have radios and are available to assist you with information, directions, and assistance. We hope you will take a moment to express your appreciation for these helpful volunteers who are here to make your visit a pleasant experience.

Albion Goodrich Chapel interior
Voting members will be seated in Goodrich Chapel, main floor and balcony. Guests will be seated in nearby Wesley Chapel. ~ mic photo/Mark Doyal

Other details
In-gathering: Our Special Session in-gathering will support Albion First UMC’s Baby Pantry. They accept any brand of diaper, sizes newborn to 4. (Size 4 is most commonly requested.) Any Enfamil or Similac formula product is appreciated. A van will be parked close to Goodrich Chapel to collect your donation, or you can bring a check made payable to Albion First United Methodist Church, with “Baby Pantry” in the memo line. Checks can be dropped off at the trailer or at registration.

Food & Beverages: Lunch is not provided at this meeting. Please eat before you arrive at Goodrich Chapel and bring whatever snacks & beverages you need for the afternoon. This map highlights the restaurants available in Albion. 

Coats, bags, and seating: Seating in Goodrich Chapel is in pews. Registration has been strong and we are expecting a full house. To ensure we have as much space as possible, please limit the bags, coats, and other materials you bring. Coat check will be available. Those who are able-bodied will be asked to fill the 350 seats in the balcony. There are no elevators to the balcony.

Restrooms: Goodrich Chapel has a limited number of restrooms for a crowd of our size. Restrooms in the Albion First UMC and a number of college buildings will be available and marked. If you are able-bodied, please use those restrooms accessible by stairs.

For those at home: Livestreaming on Facebook begins at 1:20 pm.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!