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Conference Calling 2
This second Conference Calling e-mail comes much sooner than I had planned but it contains some news I want you to see before the General Meeting of BC Conference next week.
First, though, thank you for your enthusiastic response to my first “Conference Calling.” I have found across the Conference a great deal of support and warmth; I had not anticipated this gift before becoming Executive Secretary. It has been very encouraging to me over the past two years.
And now, some news……..
The General Meeting of BC Conference meets next week from May 26-29 in the Comox Valley. We have not met for two years so this reunion of God’s far-flung BC family is being greatly anticipated. If you are to attend and have not registered yet, please do so right away on-line at the BC Conference website ( www.bc.united-church.ca ). The reports being presented at this gathering are also available on the website for those attending or those simply interested. If you are not attending, please uphold the meeting in prayer.
A central issue at the General Meeting will be the future of the ten United Church camps in BC Conference. A far-reaching report suggesting significant changes to our camping ministry has been received and will be discussed. Those attending the meeting are strongly urged to have read the full report. You can download it from the BC Conference website.
Long time staff member, Keith Howard, has been seconded by the General Council office to work on a special national project. "Seconded" means that he has been "borrowed" for a particular length of time. Keith will be heading up the national initiative named "For Such A Time As This." This is a major undertaking, putting together a national media campaign alongside an initiative of congregational renewal. His full time contract with the General Council will be from June 2005 to the end of 2006. Keith takes with him a lifetime of interest and experience in media issues, as well as a deep understanding of the issues involving the church and culture. Replacing Keith will be impossible for BC Conference. I will be searching for ways, however, to make sure the most important work Keith has been handling in Conference will continue in some form during his absence.
Dave Anderson is a key organizer of the Re:VIVE event at the Vancouver School of Theology on July 25-29. Re:VIVE is dedicated to transforming congregational life through worship. You will find workshops, different worship experiences, music, information and inspiration. Doris Kizinna is involved as well, helping pull together “Awe” worship. Check out the VST website for more information.
BC Conference has donated $500 to the organizers of Gitxsan Spirit, a walk from Hazelton to Port Alberni by survivors of the residential schools. As well, BC Conference continues to be represented by Terry Anderson and myself at Alternate Dispute Resolution hearings, an alternative to court cases where survivors are involved in a legal, but far less legalistic, process to have their injuries recognized and compensated.
The Conference staff who work at the Rumble Street office meet every Wednesday morning at 9:30 a.m. for worship. A central part of our worship is sharing in prayer for one another, for neighbours, and for Conference, especially those who are sick or in difficulty. Bringing our joys, our troubles, our anxieties, and our fervent hopes before God regularly reminds us how blessed we are to have been captured by a God who cares enough about us to become one of us and even die as one of us, who binds us to friends and strangers, who calls us into a life of mission.
May the wonders and mysteries of a triune God enwrap you this Trinity Sunday, leading you deeper into the strange, inexplicable, life-giving walk with Jesus Christ.