by Anthony Fatta
Wondering what your friends in the Western Jurisdiction were up to last week? Check out Relevance LEAD, and see Anthony's explanation on why it is important!
The Relevance LEAD conference was not your typical best practices, build
it and they will come, young adult outreach conference. It was a
little more cerebral than that. We know dressing, teaching, and
preaching in one particular way is not the answer to reaching more
people. Instead of the typical coffeehouse preaching or film-based
sermon series, we had workshops that really focused on our development
as ministers like: how to be authentically you in ministry, how to
affirm lay ministry as equal to ordained ministry, and to be creative
even if it means losing our pensions...because, let’s be real, they will
not be there anyways.
In terms of social justice, that is what
young adults are hungry for. They want to plug into a tradition that
has a strong social witness, but not one that has become a rotary club.
Needless to say, this conference was a great one to attend. I think
the Western Jurisdiction (at least those at this conference) recognizes
that church as usual does not work anymore. We need to let the Spirit
move us somewhere else. It’s scary, but it’s a lot better than
bemoaning a slow, painful decline. The Gospel is a message for all
people, but how it’s shared with people needs to be changed! I look
forward to being a part of that change.
Anthony Fatta is the Youth
Director at Los Gatos UMC in the Bay Area of California and is a recent
graduate of Vanderbilt Divinity School.