Wednesday, May 07, 2008

General Conference Guilt

I have a confession to make. I totally missed General Conference. Probably that had something to do with my being on vacation during the better part of the gathering, but the fact remains.... I paid no attention, spent no time thinking about and was barely even aware that it was going on. And I feel guilty. I'm sure some people would consider me a bad United Methodist because of it and I would be hard pressed to disagree.

What is the root cause of my disinterest? I'm not exactly sure. Perhaps I'm more pessimistic than I would like to admit.... maybe I didn't think anything of real significance would happen... maybe I was trying to protect myself from disappointment... maybe I was weary of large gatherings where the agendas are busy but little gets done.

I know many people who were glued to their computers, watching the video feeds and checking the updates every day. I thank God for those people, but that was not me. I will say that I prayed for my friends and the other delegates who attended. And I've enjoyed reading the blog posts as reflections and impression trickled out over the last week. Even now, as I hear bits and pieces, I celebrate the steps we have taken toward being an inclusive church, but I grieve the long way we still have to go.

Perhaps I need to catch the Spirit. As a church we don't need more people sitting on the side-lines. We need more people who are willing to risk for change. Pentecost is coming and I will keep my heart open. And I promise to be a better United Methodist four years from now!

1 comment:

Allen Ewing-Merrill said...

Or maybe a confession is not required. Sara and I did watch some of the GC feed off and on, and were alternately uplifted and totally discouraged.

I don't know... Maybe what we really need as a church is more people willing to engage the issues where they really matter -- among the hurting people of the world, not sitting in their offices or living rooms watching a live feed from a $6 million meeting, and not embroiled in a bureaucractic process that's totally distracting from what God is doing in the world.

Or maybe I'm just feeling particularly cynical about denominational politics right now...