Jottings from June: May 1, 2016

juneboutwell-redbackgroundThis past week I was reminded of the phrase, “The faster I go, the behinder I get.” Due to other necessary planning for the 2016 year and the timing of Easter this year, the office and Annual Meeting Planning Task Force were way behind.  When we were notified that John Dorhauer, UCC General Minister and President, would not be able to be with us, we had to go into crisis mode.

I stated in an email to his office that while disappointing, I understood the circumstances and would rely on the Holy Spirit to perfect all things. I am actually getting very excited about the opportunity for those who have been a presence in the history of the Southeast Conference to have a chance to share their stories and help all of us engage in a reflective time of remembrance, worship, learning, and fellowship. We will need volunteers to assist with meeting logistics and are planning a mass choir to perform an original musical offering.

The new Student Commons at Piedmont is a wonderful addition to our meeting and provides a fully accessible venue that is much closer to the dorms and Swanson where our plenary sessions will be held. The Piedmont staff continue to be extremely helpful and generous with their time so that we can ensure a good experience for all. Please know that all evaluations from the past two years have been read thoroughly and all effort has been made to address any concerns.

Our goal is to have every church in the Southeast Conference represented at Annual Meeting to celebrate our history and our fellowship. This is a significant event for any organization. Churches are invited to support the meeting in several ways: send your pastor and delegate(s), purchase an ad for the program book, bring a congregational grab bag to share during meal time, or purchase a calendar or history book. We will also be having a book sale to support the PATHWAYS program. Churches, pastors, and individuals are invited to bring books to add to the sale. We are also hoping that some of the authors among us will have an opportunity to sell and sign their books.

Workshops are being planned. Please let the Conference office know if you have an interest in presenting a workshop. The mass choir will be scheduled during a workshop time. And we will have our annual business meeting to elect leadership and approve a budget for 2016 and 2017.

As you can see, there is a lot in play. We just need to get the details worked out and put on paper so we can let you know all the wonderful activities planned as we gather together to praise, pray, take care of business, and celebrate this milestone in our faithful living together as the Southeast Conference. Please contact me if you have any questions, concerns, or wish to volunteer. Email at [email protected] or call me at 404-615-2492.

Written with hope, expectation, and confidence that we can continue to rely on the Holy Spirit to perfect all things.