The Harvest Conference Undergoes Major Changes
DR. DOUG BEACHAM
I recently finished the annual conference for the Harvest Conference. It was a wonderful and moving time. I can tell you that the Holy Spirit met with us as people, spoke the truth in love, shed tears of repentance and found Holy Spirit inspired wisdom and revelation on how to move forward.
Harvest Conference has been experiencing some difficulties in the last several years. Therefore, the main goal of this annual conference was to discern how the Harvest Conference could best move forward. On Friday afternoon, Bishops Tunstall, Drake, Herrera, and Thompson presented invitations from their conferences (including Acts2Day) for the ministers and churches to consider. Their presentations were well received and I believe the Lord used them to help the Harvest Conference ministers discern the Lord’s direction.
Following this discussion, I asked Dr. Lou Shirey to lead the entire group in prayer as we all gathered at the altar. The Holy Spirit gave him great wisdom and a deep spirit of prayerful repentance swept across the altar. There was a sense of grieving and profound seriousness that was manifested among our brothers and sisters.
Following that powerful prayer time, Bishop Thompson came to me that he sensed the Lord giving an option that had not been considered. I agreed with him and we met privately with Bishop Charles Womack and his council. The proposal was that Harvest would remain a conference with a five-member executive council. However, the council members would only be board members. Bishop Thompson felt led of the Lord to personally serve as a 12-month interim conference superintendent so that the full resources of EVUSA could come to the assistance of the Harvest Conference. The five-member board would also be an interim board until the spring of 2015 when a full conference will be held again to elect their own officials.
After sharing this with the council, Bishop Thompson and I excused ourselves and allowed Bishop Womack and his executive council to reflect, pray, and determine what to do with this. They informed Bishop Thompson and me that they accepted the proposal and would offer it to the conference in session on Saturday morning.
Following the license of three ministers, and the ordination of four ministers, the conference council offered the motion that had been discussed on Friday evening. It passed with a very strong majority with only two dissenting votes.
Following this meeting Bishop Thompson spoke about what had happened and the future of the Harvest Conference. “It was my pleasure to attend the annual meeting of the Harvest Conference with Presiding Bishop Beacham. During the conference the delegates voted for a special restart/revitalization plan involving EVUSA. It will be a pleasure for the EVUSA Team and Staff to work with the churches and clergy of this conference. The restart program officially begins June 1. The interim leadership team will meet for three days in May for a special prayer retreat. Out of that meeting, items such as planting churches and helping already existing churches move to the next level will be developed. I look forward to seeing what the Lord will do in the Harvest Conference in the next year and I am honored and humbled to play a role in that advancement.”
I want to thank Bishop Thompson for sensing the Lord’s leading and obeying it. I believe this will enable the conference to get back on its feet. They will not be paying a superintendent for a year. Also, the training that EVUSA will bring, will allow Harvest Conference to expand and lay a strong foundation for a new season of ministry in Kansas and Missouri.
Finally, I want to commend Bishop Charles Womack and his council members. They have shown great grace and wisdom in this process. Their hearts have been that the Lord’s will would be accomplished. Their actions and attitudes have demonstrated deep godliness. This could not have occurred without that kind of spiritually mature and wise leadership.