The 222nd General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) has convened. And I am seated in a commissioner’s seat, listening… a lot.
Thus far I have listened to…
….trusted friends and colleagues interpreting key items of business and catching me up on their lives.
… a many voiced choir and bell ringers.
… repeated affirmations that I am forgiven; we are forgiven; thanks be to God.
… my fellow committee leaders as we practiced parliamentary procedure.
… the outgoing moderator as he preached and summarized what he has learned from his conversation with the denomination.
… ecumenical and interfaith delegates bringing greetings, praying.
… a litany expressing our grief over the many lives lost in horrific acts of public violence, and a communal Amen devoted to the transformation of our neighborhoods.
… a fellow commissioner sharing what he heard on a visit to Israel/Palestine, from Palestinian Muslims and Christians, shortly before he learned he’d be serving on the Middle East committee at this assembly.
… lots of words of orientation, some quite humorous.
… the outgoing vice-moderator presiding with humor and grace.
… that per capita is how we mutually share in meaningful ministry.
… Spanish, Korean, Arabic– all so lovely.
… that hope does not disappoint, and that we ought not disappoint hope.