Last week our Alaska appointed and retired mission staff and spouses met for a two-day retreat in Anchorage. The highlight was spending time with Father Michael Oleksa of the Orthodox Church teach us about how to understand different cultures. It is often like two groups of people playing a ball game, only one is playing according to the rules of basketball and the other is using soccer rules. We need to understand one anothers' game and the rules. HEre's a brief clip:
Then it was time to conduct our business, this time at Anchor Park. We have a link for everyone to evaluate this experience and location in the E-Aurora. In addition to our regular committees there was the Vision Team, Annual Conference Planning, and GBGM consultation.
On Sunday we held a joint worship service at Central Lutheran Church in Anchorage commemorating our union. Bishop Hagiya preached a powerful message about a broken Christ for a broken world. Here's a clip of the first hymn, "Lift High the Cross."
I hope all of our Alaska United Methodist leaders will find ways to share what happened at Winter Rendezvous with their churches. Educating our people is an important piece of what we can do to strengthen our connection.
Grace and peace,