Well, it’s that time again – Presbyterian General Assembly. Now, before you groan, let me tell you a little bit about what I’ve learned since grudgingly agreeing to become the Moderator of the Presbytery. It’s not all about business meetings. Seriously, that’s been my biggest “aha!” realization! To run any organization at any level – national, regional, or local, of course there must be meetings and there must be rules of order and votes and discussions and presentations, BUT . . . that doesn’t have to be the focus. While moderating the meetings of Maumee Valley Presbytery, I have realized that the ultimate goal is to build relationships. It seems a funny way to do it, but when you put a bunch of church workers together who spend the better parts of their day doing isolated or 1:1 work, there is a desperate need to remind each other that we are made for community.
In our declaration of faith, it is written:
“God made us for life in community.
God created human beings with a need for community
and with freedom to enter into it
by responding to their Maker with grateful obedience
and to one another with love and helpfulness.
We believe that we have been created
to relate to God and each other
in freedom and responsibility.
We may misuse our freedom and deny our responsibility
by trying to live without God and other people
or against God and other people.
Yet we are still bound to them for our life and well-being,
and intended for free and responsible fellowship with them.
Since every human being is made
for communion with God and others,
we must treat no one with contempt.
We are to respect and love all other people
and ourselves as well.”
And so, in the Presbyterian Church, we meet together to be reminded that we need one another. We need each other’s gifts. We need to be met and to meet. We need to connect with other churches so that we do not 1) think that we are the only people in the whole world doing God’s work and 2) so that we can celebrate the work that God is doing not only through us but far beyond us! And we have meetings to intentionally listen to one another and listen for God’s voice through the gathered people.
As Moderator of the presbytery I’ve become deeply aware that we easily forget each other when we stay away for any length of time. And we think that we are forgotten or that no one cares or that no one understands when, in fact, when we meet together and share openly with one another, we discover that we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses.
So I invite you to join in the online presentations of General Assembly 2022 to pray, to understand, and to be understood. I have to hope it is more joyful than the daily news! The link to follow what is going on and to worship with the Church throughout our many presbyteries is right here: https://ga-pcusa.org/
See you Sunday at 10:30 AM when we will celebrate fathers and Our Father.
10:30 a.m.: 2nd Sunday After Pentecost & Father's Day\
10:30 a.m.: 3rd Sunday After Pentecost and Scholarship Presentations