Darren’s weekly musings
June 7th-June 13th
This past weekend was the meeting of Toronto Conference. I am sure that in many ways it’s like other conventions that you might have attended over the years. First of all, in my observations of meetings inside and outside of churches over the years, the same groupings of people always seem to be there. There are those people who like to talk a lot. They like the sound of their own voices. They feel that they need to give their opinions on everything. Then there are those who seem to oppose everything. Someone says the sky is blue and they disagree with that. There are those who spend more time in the hallway laughing with friends rather then taking part in the business. There are those who never say anything and never get involved. You never know what they are thinking. There are those who say very little, but when they do speak everybody listens. I am sure we have all been to meetings where we can suitably cast someone to fill all of these roles.
A couple of things though separate church conferences from other conferences though. One, we pray and worship together. Because we know we are brought together by our faith, it is important that we pray and sing together. Two, we bring with us similar circumstances. Although we might be larger congregations and smaller churches, urban, suburban, and rural, all of us struggle with finances, with aging congregations, with fewer young people, and other things. We share a core set of beliefs found in our basis of union. And I hope, though it doesn’t always show through, that we treat others at our meetings a bit more kindly then other conventions.
This meeting of Toronto Conference was a bit different for me. For I know that at least for a while, I am saying goodbye- goodbye to my spiritual home for the past 15 years. At this past weekend’s meeting, I had to say goodbye to people who have been friends and colleagues. Some of these colleagues were just passing acquaintances. We have worked together over the years and that is it. Other people at Conference were good friends. Saying goodbye to them is more difficult. We have worked, laughed, prayed and cried together. We have relied on each other for support. We have a lasting relationship.
Saying goodbye is never easy. And I will miss you dear friends at Asbury and West. We too have gone through much during the past 4 years. Living in the wilderness at 255 Finch Avenue, deaths, anniversaries, joys, births, moving back, laughing, crying, and eating. In good times and through bad we have worked well together. But in life I think not only death and taxes are inevitable but so is saying goodbye. I wish you well in the days to come. You are a special people who are dear to my heart. Blessings dear friends.
I will continue to blog. You can find my musings at its new home