During his presidential address at the Council of Bishops’ gathering on November 7, Bishop Thomas Bickerton spoke about his experience during the 2023 Texas Annual Conference: (This segment begins at 45:53). Watch the Recorded Livestream

“I walked into a room where I was more than curious about what I would find in terms of spirit, attitude, and emotion. What I discovered was that every single time – EVERY single time – either Bishop Harvey, or Ashley Bogan, or I mentioned the phrase “The United Methodist Church” there was applause! Cheering! Enthusiasm!… The people in that room wanted to be in that room! There were stories of new faith communities that just sprung up as a remnant of a former congregation and were facilitated by a United Methodist Retired Pastor. They didn’t wait for permission!… They said with resolve “We are the people of the United Methodist Church!” And in that setting in that annual conference there was a group of younger United Methodists conservatives, moderates, and liberals got together and organized a group named TWMBO – That We May Be One. They decided to bring a resolution to the floor that they had made a decision to get along, to work together, and to love one another. A resolve that the best way to find their way through the morass was to do it together, rather than in opposition. And that action was nothing less than the work of the Holy Spirit. The Texas Annual Conference unanimously decided that they were going to try to be the body of Christ.”