Today’s worship theme: Called to Worship
“For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted” (Luke 18:14).
Quotes of the day:
“A parable is something cast alongside the truth, tossed out for better understanding.... Truth served up in the form of a story.”
-- Bible study leader Dana Cassell, explaining that Greek words for “toss” and “alongside” put together are translated as “parable.”
“Your stories and narratives showed a hope beyond hope for our team.... Salvation through Christ was the main reason we feel compelled to follow Jesus.”
-- Brian Messler reporting on outcomes of the first Compelling Vision session held with the delegate body, when questions for “table talk” discussion included, “What compels you to follow Jesus?” The Compelling Vision table talk continued today with several more questions. Delegates and nondelegates were invited to share in small groups their thoughts about shared values, themes that are emerging, and more.
“For the preparation of sermons, for the direction of Bible study, for the general administration of the church, for pastoral care and visitation, and for all those things not in the job description that come up day to day...teach us to support and affirm our pastors.”
-- David Shumate leading a prayer affirming pastors, during the report of the Pastoral Compensation and Benefits Advisory Committee.
“Brethren in the US need to take up the task of loving our neighbors, whatever religion they hold.... We are called to love God and love our neighbors without qualifiers about who those neighbors are.”
-- Tim Speicher during the report from the committee on “Vision of Ecumenism for the 21st Century.” He served as convenor for the committee.
“I am overwhelmed by your kindness today.... Your gifts--I cannot begin to tell you--cannot come at a better time.”
-- Margot Spence, president and CEO of First Step Home, thanking the Conference for the donations to the Witness to the Host City. First Step Home is a drug and alcohol treatment program in Cincinnati for women and children, allowing children up to age 12 to stay with their mothers in treatment.
“Enter a symbolic spiritual revolution!”
-- Bethany Seminary professor Scott Holland speaking about the “invitation of theopoetics” for the Brethren Press and Messenger Dinner.
“Worship begins when our hearts are in the right place, and when our hearts are in the right place worship never ends.”
-- Rosanna Eller McFadden preaching for the evening worship service on the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector from Luke 18.
By the numbers:
Registration total at the end of the day: 2,216 including 673 delegates and 1,543 nondelegates
Friday’s offering received during worship, to benefit disaster relief in Puerto Rico: $14,773
Donations of cash, checks, and gift cards to the Witness to the Host City, to benefit First Step Home: $9,492.75. This total does not include the donations of goods and items such as diapers for use by the organization that serves women and children in Cincinnati.
Webcast views: Thursday evening worship drew 250 live viewers and 700 views by Friday morning.
Ministry Assistance Fund: The Minister’s Association raised $2,102 for the fund.
Clergywomen: Save this date!
At the Clergywomen’s Breakfast, the "Quinquennial Church of the Brethren Clergywomen’s Retreat" was announced for Jan. 6-9, 2020. The retreat for ordained, licensed, and commissioned women ministers will be held at the Franciscan Renewal Center in Scottsdale, Ariz., as "a time of spiritual renewal, refreshment, and precious time with sisters in ministry." Mandy Smith, pastor of University Christian Church in Cincinnati, will be the speaker.
SERRV store returns to Annual Conference
The SERRV store has returned to the Exhibit Hall this year, after Conference-goers missed the opportunity to purchase the organization’s fair trade goods that offer fair compensation to craftspeople and chocolate, tea, and coffee farmers around the world. The store this year is being offered on a consignment basis, run by Northern Ohio District volunteers with leadership from pastor Tina Hunt. Purchases at SERRV this year have a doubly good purpose--a percentage of the money from each item that is purchased is being contributed to the work of Brethren Disaster Ministries.
For more onsite coverage of Annual Conference go to www.brethren.org/ac/2018/coverage .
The news coverage of Annual Conference 2018 is made possible through the work of communications staff and a volunteer news team: Frank Ramirez, Conference Journal editor; photographers Glenn Riegel, Regina Holmes, Keith Hollenberg, Donna Parcell, Laura Brown; writers Frances Townsend, Karen Garrett, Alyssa Parker; youth team member Allie Dulabaum; web staff Jan Fischer Bachman, Russ Otto; Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of News Services; Wendy McFadden, publisher. Contact email@example.com.