Illinois Conference Annual Meeting - Day 2

This was the day everyone expected to be difficult and draining -- I guess it was.

  • Jorge Morales, associate conference minister, inspired us and encouraged us to seek to continue growing in spiritual vitality even in the midst of the tension we have now and will likely continue to have in a community where we have such wonderful diversity
  • Jane Fisler Hoffman, conference minister, (she's recently announced her resignation but could still serve as late as June 2008) moved us is such profound and deep ways with her open and frank testimony about her treatment for clinical depression, saying that "untreated depression is epidemic in the church." She challenged us, as she opened up about being a shattered clay pot, to take a look at our own stuff -- personally and as a community, and to trust God, not to erase our issues, but to let God's light shine through the cracks in our brokenness.
  • Our long, robust and spirited conversations about a conference restructure ended up with a vote to keep things status quo. In the process I am sure that feelings were hurt and friendships strained, but through our messiness God's love continued.
  • Ruth Duck led us in a time of worship geared toward reconciling with one another after such a difficult and painful discussion. She encouraged us by saying that God's healing doesn't erase the past, but it does give is the ability to start anew. We were all moved by her words and by the incredibly vibrant and celebrative music of the service.

Tomorrow we wrap things up. No big business to do, just a time of celebration and sending out.

I get to lead music -- I'm ready for some loud and unforgettable praise and worship!

No comments: