This summer I posted about being at General Convention on the Fourth of July. Apparently the Church likes having meetings on holidays because its Veterans' Day, and I'm on my way to another meeting. This time, it's as a member of the Standing Commission for Lifelong Christian Formation and Education (SCLCFE).
But this meeting is more than that. At this year's General Convention, we called for a new way of doing the administrative business of the church. So all of the CCABs are being called together for a joint meeting to both get their respective balls rolling and, hopefully, to figure out how to do what we do without so much expense, bureaucracy, and waste. Can it be done?
I went to General Convention expecting both to enjoy it and to sense that it was bogged down in controversy. I was right on the first part and wrong on the second. Our time in Indy was governed primarily by a spirit of unity and shared mission. I was surprised. I was shocked. And I'm hoping for more of the same this week.
By Thursday I'll know whether there is reason to hope that we can turn thing around radically or whether we can only hope for incremental progress. I'm hoping for huge, ground-swelling change, but I can't yet see how it is possible. But I still have hope.
The actual issues facing the SCLCFE are important and worth our attention. We need to be a church that forms and educates its people about the good news of Jesus Christ much better than we currently do. But that will always be the case. Right now, though, I'm waiting to see whether we can be part of the wider solution before we try to solve our own problems.