It has been my goal to make it this entire annual conference without buying any food for myself, on Friday I broke my streak and bought some mini corn dogs (they were delicious in case you were wondering). Anyhow, yesterday the Mary Ann Kaiser dramatic saga concerning her ordination being discontinued by a vote of clergy I’m going to call it “NGAM” or “No gays allowed movement”. Reverend John Elford of University United Methodist Church in Austin requested a ruling of law on the matter of the Book of Discipline being ignored as clergy took action that was unconstitutional (for our Church). The Bishop has 30 days to make a ruling and will then send it onward to the Judicial Council. Also the national branch of Reconciling Ministries hopped on board to support Mary Ann as well as GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). At 2PM CST hundreds of people tweeted their support and their demands for justice for Mary Ann, a reminder of how global our Church really has, and how many of its people are seeking justice for all.
But, I’m getting ahead of myself, my day started at 6AM as I headed to the Methodist Renewal Movement breakfast where Rev. Wendy Deichmann spoke about the renewal that has been taking place at United Theological Seminary. Her speech at some points sounded lie a really long commercial for her seminary, but I still found myself inspired by the beautiful work that the Holy Spirit did through her to save UTS. Also, their breakfast tacos were delicious and filled with plenty of God’s perfect gift to mankind, bacon. I also got to briefly catch up with Rev. Ryan Barnett of Saint John’s UMC in Corpus Christi, who also happens to be a founding member of the Methodist Renewal Movement, he’s a really busy guy so it was a blessing to get to run into him.
The first two plenary sessions were rather boring and uneventful with the exception being the call for legal review. I had a lovely dinner with the Reverend Abby Parker, and her boo-thang JD Herrera. Then we went onward to a Young Adult hangout where we all sat around and discussed our lives our hopes and our dream, and of course our evil plans to overthrow the elderly (just kidding). It was a wonderful time of fellowship and I was blessed by the new friends I made, as well as the wonderful encouragement it was to see that I wasn't the only person in the conference that didn't have gray hair. Saturday is a new day, and we shall see which way the Spirit is moving.