That’s a great question. By the time I’m done, I might not be able to tell you. But here’s a try:
My first stop will be the North Georgia Annual Conference. This is the yearly meeting of United Methodist clergy and laity. Here we will ordain those who have responded to God’s call to ministry, celebrate all that has gone on since last June, and make plans for the upcoming year. Included in this is approving our budget. We’ll worship, celebrate new church starts, thank God as we remember the long-faithful ministries in the churches that will be discontinued, and share together in fellowship with colleagues. Other items we’ll be considering includes:
- Pondering changes to clergy health insurance to come into alignment with the Affordable Care Act (Dave’s commentary: and to shift more of the burden of the cost to clergy, which probably is a valid point. I just wish that was front and center.)
- Receiving an offering for Imagine No Malaria. Remember, $10 saves a life.
- Deciding what to do with the land that was intended to become a new Camp Wesley. Remember friends, its surrounded on three sides by hunting clubs. I don’t think I’d send my child to such a camp for safety reasons alone.
- There’s usually a list of resolutions, to gauge where we are on various issues in the life of the annual conference.
- Oh, yeah, and there’s that voting thing for General Conference.
Its a full week and a lot to accomplish. But I won’t be returning home.
Off to Yale
I’m sure many were moved by our Palm Sunday presentation, One Helluva Week. Some even saw the story on Fox 5 where they
shared what we were doing misrepresented us. thought our sign was crude.
But apparently, others paid attention to what this original work was really about–neither crude nor disrespectful–and invited Druid Hills UMC to submit this work to Yale Institute of Sacred Music’s Congregations Project. We were accepted and we’re one of seven congregations across North America invited to share our projects, learn from one another, and develop this project more during our time together. We’ll spend a week in New Haven dreaming, planning, writing, listening and bring back a richer project than what we left with.
After that, I’ll be meeting my family for some time off. Both being pastors, we rarely get to see each other during the week–meetings, the kid’s schedule, etc. So we’re going to take some time to recharge the batteries so we can come back to our places of ministry with new insight and renewed energy.
While I’m away at Annual Conference, I’ll have limited access to email but am available for pastoral emergcies.
While at Yale, I’ll have limited access to email as well but, thanks to Dr. Rex Kaney and Rev. Alvin Lingenfelter, there is pastoral care in case of emergency. We’ve published in the bulletin and newsletters the dates for their helping out.
Once vacation hits, I’ll be unavailable until we come back in town. Rex and Alvin will be covering pastoral care for me. For that, I am very grateful.