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General Conference Session Facts

The 2010 General Conference Session represents a new high mark for delegate counts, with 2,410 people slated to vote on agenda items. This inches over the 1995 GC Session which had 2321 delegates. The last GC Session, in St. Louis, MO, had 1903 delegates.

Of those, only the 235 members of the Nominating Committee will select the next General Conference President and much of the church leadership. The big question is, who will be President of the Seventh-day Adventist Church for the next five years. Will Jan Paulsen continue? Will Ted N. C. Wilson, son of former President Neal C. Wilson, finally see his campaigning pay off? Will Pardon Kandanga Mwansa, general vice president since 2005 become the first President from Africa. Or will something surprising happen, like in 1990 when Robert S. Folkenberg was plucked from the Carolina Conference presidency.

Five years ago, the world church membership stood at 14 million, and the most recent numbers list Adventist world membership at 16.3 million. Of course the delegates will receive updated reports, and SPECTRUM will report on that, but here are the 2008 stats for comparison.

2008 Stats: World Division | Church Membership | Total Tithes & Offerings

East-Central Africa 2,474,396 $25,461,643
Euro-Africa 176,209 $172,406,247
Euro-Asia 137,593 $35,684,726
Inter-American 3,127,602 $254,134,020
North American 1,084,838 $1,302,069,299
Northern Asia-Pacific 607,057 $89,697,436
South American 2,250,520 $2,250,520
South Pacific 407,505 $116,034,580
Southern Africa-Indian Ocean 2,325,863 $75,779,565
Southern Asia 1,429,172 $4,670,386
Southern Asia-Pacific 965,608 46,007,875
Trans-European 109,876 $65,257,496
West-Central Africa 825,169 $18,518,576
TOTALS 15,921,408 $2,627,027,513

That’s about $170.50 per world capita.

It appears that while the North American Division represents about 1/15th of the church membership, about half of the tithes and offerings to run the church come from the NAD.

Special GC Session quiz. Of course Battle Creek, Mich., has hosted the most GC Sessions. But what city has hosted the second most, with eight?


Stats from ANN, GC-Office of Statistic and Archives, and SPECTRUM research. Image of Ellen White addressing the men of the 1901 General Conference Session in Battle Creek.

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