I just returned from attending PNW's annual conference which was a real delight. There were several reasons to go: being there for David and Julie Elmore's commissioning, telling the AUMC story at their Ministry Fair, networking with leaders, and playing on the bishop's basketball team to raise money for Nothing But Nets.
The commissioning/ordination service was inspirational with retired bishop Woodie White preaching about feeding the shepherds. He challenged the laity to feed their pastors. Bishop Hagiya asked people to come forward if they were feeling a call from God into professional ministry. The superintendents prayed for them. It was a holy privilege for me to pray with several people who came in tears.
I was able to spend time with Craig Parrish, our treasurer, on a few AUMC issues. I also was briefed on the role of Volunteer's in Mission. My past work with PNW's board of ministry helped in making connections with folks.
You should know that our bishop is quite a good basketball player. The game got crazy as people bribed the officials with donations to Nothing But Nets. I wondered if we might do something similar in Alaska next year.
I am trying to be patient with myself for not being up to proper superintendent speed. It is not an easy transition to go from being a pastor for 30 years to this new role. I ask for your prayers, and for Leila and Crystal as we forge a new team.
Grace and peace,