Monday, April 10, 2006
Egypt Alert! ABC Leadership Continues to Live in a State of De-Nile!
See the elephant? The big one in the living room? Yep, I do. But not these Valley Forge visionaries. Occaisional flashes of realism are bolded. Gimme a break...
From the Worldwide Faith News archives www.wfn.org
ABCUSA: General Executive Council Delves Into Weighty Matters At Meeting
From "Jayne, Andy" <Ajayne@ABC-USA.org>Date Mon, 10 Apr 2006 14:40:19 -0400
VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS)-The General Executive Council (GEC) meeting of the American Baptist Churches USA took significant steps in attempting to position the mission and ministry of ABCUSA for the 21st Century. The stage for this meeting, which was held from April 5-8 in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, was set by the action of the GEC itself at its November 2005 meeting in Green Lake, Wisconsin. The GEC in its gathering acknowledged the brokenness of our relationships and need for healing.
Internationally recognized facilitator, Trish Jones, led the GEC through the process of examining the operational system of ABCUSA. Dr. Jones assisted the group in identifying four critical areas for review: structure, leadership, the representative process and relevance. These four areas represented common ground for the GEC participants.
A scheduled meeting in June will involve a brainstorming session to clarify solutions with a high level of specificity. The outcome will be distributed to a wider ABC audience for input. A September meeting will negotiate possible courses of action. This GEC meeting was imbued with a sense of hope as well as an element of urgency. Participants experienced movement and progress toward concensus, and the day and a half of discussions were held on a positive and high level without conflict or confusion.
Also leading a session of the GEC meeting was well-known consultant, Dr. David Roozen, who placed the weighty issues facing ABCUSA in a wider context. Dr. Roosen pointed out that mainline or oldline denominations as well as other denominations in the United States are all facing difficult issues regarding downsizing, diminishing financial resources, and other troubling matters between leadership and congregational life.
For the GEC, however, their meeting was touched with a God-moment as new light began to emerge from the distant horizon. [Oh, be still my heart! What light from yonder horizon breaks!] A new day seems to be dawning as a new vision is birthing around the Focus Statement: American Baptist Churches are Healthy Missional Churches that Nurture Devoted Disciples of Jesus Christ who Live Their Lives in Mission and Ministry for the Healing of the World through the Love of Christ. This Statement grew out of Seek It! and the Seven Key Ministry Areas of Radical Discipleship, Healthy Missional Churches, Leadership, Church Planting, Youth, Stewardship and Mutual Faithfulness.
Andrew C. Jayne American Baptist Churches, USA Mission Resource Development http://www.abc-usa.org/