George O. Wood was re-elected general superintendent of the Assemblies of God (AG) today during the denomination’s biennial General Council meeting being held this week in Orlando, Fla.
Later in the day, the 3 million-member Pentecostal denomination elected a woman to the Executive Presbytery under a newly adopted resolution that calls for greater representation of women and pastors under the age of 40 on the denomination’s governing board of directors.
The Rev. Elizabeth Grant, a veteran missionary and coordinator for the denomination’s Women in Ministry Network, became the first ordained female representative on the Executive Presbytery. The Rev. Bryan Jarrett, 35-year-old pastor of North Place Church in Sachse, Texas, was elected to the governing body under the same resolution.
Under a seperate resolution that created a second Spanish-language area, the Rev. Saturnino Gonzalez also was elected to the Executive Presbytery on Wednesday. Gonzalez has been superintendent of the Southeastern Spanish District since 2008 and previously served as superintendent of the Puerto Rico District. He represents the East Spanish Area on the Executive Presbytery.
Like Wood, the denomination’s other executive leaders were re-elected to their positions, including General Secretary James T. Bradford, General Treasurer Doug Clay, and Zollie Smith, executive director of U.S. Missions.
The General Council meeting drew some 30,000 people to Orlando. The meetings officially began on Tuesday, but many delegates participated in the denomination’s premier Influence Leadership Seminar, which began on Monday. Speakers included Mark Batterson of National Community Church in Washington, D.C.; Ed Young Jr. of Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas; and Bible teacher Beth Moore.
Evening sessions were led by denominational leaders, including Wood, who told delegates Tuesday night that the chruch’s future was bright. He said the denomination—one of the few churches in the U.S. to experience growth last year—sees 8,000 people worldwide join the denomination each day.
Globally, the AG has 60 million members in 300,000 churches, Wood said. In the U.S., the church has roughly 3 million members.
Council speakers also include several non-AG leaders, including former Indianapolis Colts coach Tony Dungy, who spoke during a Discipleship luncheon on Wednesday, and pastor Rick Warren, who is scheduled to speak on Friday, the last day of the council meeting.
The council meeting will end with a Fine Arts Festival, the final phase of a competition that is expected to draw some 10,000 teens Friday night.