#UCCSynod: Healing and Community at the National Open and Affirming Gathering

Caryne Eskridge

6/22/2019

Greetings from Milwaukee! My General Synod experience begins a few days before Synod itself, with the Gathering of the Open and Affirming Coalition. Without the Coalition, I would not be a member of a UCC church and, I believe, I would likely not be discerning a call to ministry. When I first found the United Church of Christ in 2015, I was searching for a church that would love and support me as a lesbian/queer woman and in the fullness of my identity. In 2017 I attended my first Open and ...


#UCCSynod: Less-Visible Gatherings

Matthew McCaffrey

6/22/2019

I’m not a breakfast person. (Yes, there are tribes that revolve around which meals are “us.”) So the prospect of hauling my tired, talked-out bones out of bed at O’Dark Hundred to join fellow delegates over a buffet breakfast is not the most attractive idea I’ve heard for how to start my day. But at Synod, the tradition and discipline of getting a delegation’s group together for breakfast to start the day is oddly energizing. Today, Saturday, the three southern New England conferences got “...


#UCCSynod: We Have Everything We Need

Holly Norwick

6/22/2019

Today started early with our first Tri-Conference Caucus at 6:30 in the morning. We are off to a great running start though, despite the sleepy eyes and coffee groans, with our UCC General Minister and President John Dorhauer taking some time to talk with us over our communion breakfast. His energy is better than the caffeine as he excitedly offers his support for the Together As One (TA1) resolution we bring to the Synod floor in just a few days. It’s hard to imagine life without my Connecticut...


#UCCSynod: What If We Held a Banquet?

Mark Diters

6/22/2019

Busy day, workshops just wrapped up…three plenaries into Synod 32…leaves many ‘lookin’ for the heart of Saturday night’. Today we heard from Matthew Desmond, personally driving home the tragic inequality that his book well documents. Last night the Rev. Kaji Spellman Dousa challenged the gathered assembly to recognize the “now”; to be in the present for it is all we have, because the future is not guaranteed to any. She used the image of a clock tower on which the clock’s face had lost its hands...


#UCCSynod The Serious Work Before Us

Mark Diters

6/21/2019

It’s travel day…or yesterday was for me. Long, long…long, long…long, long… story short; ask some of the CT delegation how their connection in Chicago went. Two of us ended up taking a bus to Milwaukee four hours after we were supposed to already have arrived. And to add insult to injury, we had to go to the airport because our luggage had made it there and we had not. And as for the others, some could still be in Chicago. If you read Evicted, by our keynote speaker Matthew Desmond, you have ...


#UCCSynod: Rise and SHINE!

Holly Norwick

6/21/2019

The morning brought a buzz that resounded from the lobby of the hotel. I didn’t have anything scheduled for my time this morning but there was still so much to do. It was time to Shine! So, as instructed, I put on my Massachusetts Conference Shine! t-shirt that we were given as delegates and made my way toward the buzz. Some were still arriving, adding to the growing hum of welcome bags, hugs, and shouts of allegiance as Shine! t-shirt after Shine! t-shirt congregated together. Lots of colors ...


#UCCSynod: Welcome to Milwaukee!

Laura Fitzpatrick-Nager

6/21/2019

My taxi driver and I  made a surprising connection this morning en route from the airport. His name was Mustafa and he talked while driving and smiling about all of the great sites to take in here in Milwaukee. We learned about the best cheese puffs, Harleys and the best brews. When I commented that his Middle Eastern accent was familiar to me, Mustafa said he came from Jordan originally. I’d recently returned from an interfaith trip through my church to visit voices of conscience in Palestine, ...


#UCCSynod: Blessings

Holly Norwick

6/20/2019

The 8 o’clock hour here in Milwaukee offers a quiet excitement as I sneak by the check-in tables and make my way to the counter for my room key. It’s easy to avert recognition looking like I do after the 5-hour drive – hair in a fallen ponytail, eyes puffy from the thoughts that accompanied me along the way. The excitement was a welcome transition after the ache of the drive just hours after sitting my 11-month-old down at gramma’s house next door in Minnesota, trying to explain mommy’s work in ...


Many Voices, One Mission: Ready, Set, Go

Emily McKenna

6/19/2019

"Our faith as Christians reminds us that for everything there is a season." —Emily McKenna


Many Voices One Mission: From the Inside

Charles Ericson

6/12/2019

"There is an easy, sometimes playful energy of collegiality among us that can escalate into laughter or occasionally bring forth a tear. "— Rev. Chuck Ericson


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