When I was a boy there were topics of conversation that came up that my parents thought I was not ready for – or had no business being a part of. They would handle this one of two ways.
1) They would tell me its none of my business
2) They would talk around the issue and say a lot of stuff that when I thought about it more did not really tell me anything.
Option two is a bit how I feel reading Adam Hamilton’s report on the gathering of large church pastors and bishops in Utah a few weeks ago. Indeed, his commentary says very little that I could not get by reading the agenda.
The only exception to that is the conclusions reached about whether John Wesley would use remote video. If I told you that 40 percent of the large church pastors already do this can you guess what answer the group came up with?
Other than this tidbit confirming what is already a hot trend among the largest of UMC churches, we get nothing about the specific ideas or conversations that took place. We learn about some interesting topics and questions, but nothing about the conversations around those topics and questions.
And – maybe this is the old journalist in me or perhaps the frustrated 10-year-old child – but I can’t help but wonder why people who are so good at projecting visions and taking bold actions and selling ideas are so quiet about what was actually said during the meetings.
I understand that the meeting was not designed to generate a report or a specific set of actions, but I assume a third-party observer might have drawn a few conclusions about the major thrust of the conversations and the issues that came up that attracted the most passion.
Maybe the only hot-button conversation was over Wesley’s view of remote video congregations. I’m guessing more than that came up, though. Until my 37-member church grows quite a bit, I guess I won’t know.