The Revd Michaela Youngson and Bala Gnanapragasam elected as President and Vice-President of the Methodist Conference for 2018/19



The Methodist Conference has elected the Revd MichaelaYoungson to serve as President, and Bala Gnanapragasam to serve asVice-President, starting their year of office when theRepresentative Session of the Methodist Conference meets inNottingham next year.

Michaela has been Chair of the London District since 2012. Witha passion for social justice and for developing strong ecumenicalrelationships, Michaela is committed to working within the diverseand rich context of the Connexion. She is a regular contributor tothe BBC Radio 2 Early Breakfast Show's 'Pause for Thought'.

"I am delighted and humbled at the confidence shown in me bymembers of the Conference. The context of mission for the MethodistChurch is challenging and exciting and I feel hugely privileged tobe able to contribute to that in a new way," said Michaela.

Bala Gnanapragasam believes strongly in mission and socialjustice. He serves on the board of Christian Aid and MHA (formerlyknown as Methodist Homes for the Aged). He is also a trustee of theLondon HIV/Aids Chaplaincy. He was the first Synod Secretary forthe London District.

Born in Sri Lanka, Bala came to the UK in the 1960s and haspreviously served as an elected councillor for the London Boroughof Lewisham. He has also served as the Chair of University HospitalLewisham.

Bala said: "It is both humbling and an honour to be elected tothis position. I look forward to serving our great Church."

The role of President of the Methodist Conference is reservedfor presbyters (ministers) and Vice-President for lay people ordeacons.  

Images of Michaela and Bala can be found on the Methodist Flickrpage.