Carrie and I are now back from the "Hope and a Future" conference in Pittsburgh. All that I have to say is that I am feeling very encouraged. The image that I keep getting is that of a water balloon. When you hook it up to a faucet and keep the water running, eventually the balloon will break. I really feel as though we are now moving forward.
It seemed to me that the whole theme of the conference was choice. We have a choice to remain in ECUSA or do something about it. More importantly, however, we have a choice to wallow in our self-pity or to carry on with the mission of the Church and to continue making disciples of Jesus Christ. This later choice is the one that the conference planners seemed to be encouraging us to make.
I realize that many people were frustrated about the conference headline speakers all being evangelicals. These people must not have looked at the schedule very closely, because it was absolutely packed with Anglicans from across the globe. I do have to say, however, that Rick Warren really impressed me. In fact, I think I shed a tear or two as I sat and listened to his vision. People can criticize him all they want about how he is too popular, but he has a simple, and biblical vision and he has a talent for putting it in words that people understand. I too was skeptical, but I am now a big supporter of Rick Warren's ministry. I'm looking forward to reading my free copy of "Purpose Driven Church." Thanks Rick!
All I can say is that I am very excited to be so near to graduation. I am getting anxious to get out there and to start working in the vineyard. The time I spent with my New England friends has really reminded me how desperate they are for pastoral care. They need all of the prayer that they can get. I hope that I will be able to go back and join them soon.