Friday, July 17, 2009

Ubuntu, Odds n Ends, and Farewell

Well today was a busy one! Pat Abrams let me be a "Deputy for the Day" and it was really a cool thing to be on the floor of the House of Deputies, working through the budget, voting on lots of resolutions, electing people to offices within the Church, etc. We had two sessions today (thankfully a third 'evening' session was not required). And afterwards, I enjoyed dinner at an Indian restaurant, followed by a U2charist. We ended the day at our deputation meeting room where we debriefed 'our day', ate some munchies, and sang some 'creative' renditions of songs with an 'Ubuntu' flavor.

All in all, it was a great but tiring full day of Convention. Tomorrow, I will return to my Alternate status and sit for the morning legislative session with my fellow alternates while the House of Deputies debating Resolution C056 regarding same-gender blessings, which was passed by the House of Bishops on Wednesday. Then I take my leave of Anaheim and return to Illinois where seeing my family (a nice rest in my own bed) will be most welcome.

I want to thank the Diocese of Chicago for electing me as an Alternate Deputy to General Convention. It has been a blessed honor to serve.

Final Thoughts

Ubuntu!! "You in me and I in You." The theme for our Convention. A statement about our connectedness as human beings, as children of God, as fellow Episcopalians, as part of God's creation, as companions in Mission.

Our deputation has really gotten into Ubuntu (and I suppose Ubuntu has gotten into us as well). We have had a lot of fun together as we worked long hours for the past ten days. We have supported one another, laughed together, broken bread together, sang songs together. And I for one will really miss the camaraderie and the sense of community that we have developed.

This Convention has been full of experiences of Ubuntu. Sharing ministry stories with folks from Chicago. Discussing legislation and the state of our Church with my fellow Alternate Deputies at our 'table'. Having breakfasts with my mother, aunt, and cousin. Hanging out with youth from Western Michigan, Oregon, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Experiencing the daily Eucharist with thousands of Episcopalians. Sharing some 'Harry Potter love' at a midnight showing with friends. Reconnecting with friends that I probably wouldn't otherwise see if it weren't for General Convention.

I learned a lot. I learned more about the Church that I love -- its successes and its challenges. I have also gained greater insight into what makes me excited about ministry, and have seen that the Love of Jesus Christ is alive and well in the Episcopal Church. But mostly, I have learned that the Spirit does work in community and we can move forward in faith knowing that God is with us.

Got Ubuntu? The Diocese of Chicago does!

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