June 24, 2015

Session Highlights

1863 The General Conference (GC) organized in Battle Creek, Michigan, on May 20, with 20 delegates present. Minutes of the first session were published in the
Advent Review and Sabbath Herald. Adventist Review Bulletins continue that tradition.
1870 James Erzberger of Switzerland becomes the first delegate from outside the United States.
1876 Session held in Lansing, Michigan; the first GC session outside Battle Creek.
1878 J. N. Andrews attends session in Battle Creek and reports on his missionary activities in Europe, the first such report given by a credentialed Adventist missionary.
1882 Delegates gather in Rome, New York, the first GC session outside Michigan.
1887 The first time daily
GC Bulletins record session proceedings, Oakland, California.
1888 In Minneapolis, Minnesota, O. A. Olsen becomes first GC president not born in the United States.
1889 In Battle Creek, Michigan, delegates number 109, the first time those present number more than 100.
1901 Last GC session held in Battle Creek, Michigan
1909 Held in Washington, D.C., the first session to have delegates from each of the world’s major continents. Ellen White’s last GC session
1918 Session meets in the San Francisco (California) Municipal Auditorium, the first time it was not held in an Adventist facility.
1922 San Francisco. With 581 delegates, it was the first time delegates numbered more than 500.
1926 In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a public address system was used for the first time.
1946 Session meets at Sligo church in Takoma Park, Maryland, the last session to convene in an Adventist building. Much of the audio of the session was recorded, another first.
1954 In San Francisco, 1,109 delegates gather, breaking the 1,000 mark.
1975 GC session meets for the first time outside the United States in Vienna, Austria.
1985 In New Orleans, Louisiana, the session takes up the role of women in ministry. This topic would appear on the agenda of the next two sessions.
1990 Global Mission launched at the session in Indianapolis, Indiana.
1995 In Utrecht, Netherlands, last session held outside North America.
2000 In Toronto, Canada, session featured extensive revisions of the
Church Manual, with spirited discussions on the issues of marriage, divorce, and remarriage.
2005 In St. Louis, Missouri, election of first woman as a GC vice president, and adoption of a new Fundamental Belief, number 28.
2010 In Atlanta, Georgia, delegates commission the Biblical Research Institute to set up study groups in each of the church’s world divisions to study ordination and bring a recommendation to the 2015 session in San Antonio, Texas, regarding women’s ordination.