Jottings from June: July 1, 2016

juneboutwell-churchWhat a Jubilee celebration we had at Annual Meeting! This edition of the newsletter will be highlighting the activities of our gathering.

Highlights include preaching by Joyce Hollyday, the introduction of the new Conference history written by Michael T. Stroud, Ye Shall be Witnesses unto Me in the Southland, a program book (available on the website) that contained a wealth of historical information, a chance to honor and thank Gerri Hudson for her years of service with flowers and an airline voucher, a business meeting that adjourned ahead of schedule, the sharing of gift bags from local congregations and Piedmont College in lieu of door prizes at the Friday night banquet, and lots of UCC goodies at the lunch on Saturday.

Once again, we experienced the extravagant hospitality of Piedmont College and appreciated the new Student Commons which is a lovely facility and met our needs quite well and the efforts of Rev. Ashley Cleere and Megan Ramsey as Piedmont staff who helped coordinate our meeting logistics. A special thanks to Dr. James Mellichamp, president of Piedmont, who generously sponsored our Friday night banquet. And, of course, was our organist as we held opening worship in the chapel at the college.

There are pictures in galleries on the website and our Facebook page. If you have pictures to share, we would love to receive them. Please send them to Don Harris at [email protected].

As always, we could not have done this without the efforts of staff, the planning committee, Piedmont staff, and all our SEC volunteers who stepped up and filled in where there was a need. See the more complete thank you list here: secucc.org/2016/07/04/annual-meeting-thank-yous/.

I am writing this while on vacation. I had the joy of being with my father in Wyoming for Father’s Day and attending my high school alumni weekend and am now enjoying some time at my home in California catching up with neighbors and friends. I will return to the office on July 11 before heading to National Youth Event in Orlando Florida later in the month.

Blessings to you all as we approach the Fourth of July and some holiday time. But I urge you to remember that we were first free by the grace and love of God, the example of Jesus Christ who walked among us as liberator, and the power of the Holy Spirit to remove all obstacles to living life fully. May you be truly free, deeply loved, and full of grace during these summer days.