YPTT reflections on Annual Conference 2011

When we claim to be both a historic and living peace church, yet we do not lament our brokenness, where do we go from here?

When progressive and BRF young adults spend an evening together playing games and building friendships, why don’t we go from here?

When women were ordained in the Church of the Brethren in 1958, yet we undermine the vote for a woman in 2011, where do we go from here?

When Bethany Theological Seminary lifts up all women’s voices, why don’t we go from here?

When our global neighbors are suffering from the impacts of climate change, yet we are slow to take responsibility and action, where do we go from here?

When those in the Church of the Brethren transform their churches and homes to be energy efficient with the help of the New Community Project, why don’t we go from here?

When youth and young adults on the Annual Conference floor push for our voice to be heard even more, where do we go from here?

When Moderator Tim Harvey holds a meeting to hear youth and young adult concerns, and challenges them to take it upon themselves to invest in the church, why don’t we go from here?

When youth and young adults are in love with a Church of the Brethren which lives a just love and peace, yet this church has seemed to disappear before them, where do we go from here?

When youth and young adults are inspired by Brethren who literally put their lives on the line for peace, why don’t we go from here?

When the theme of Annual Conference is “Gifted with Promise: Extending Jesus’ Table,” yet the church does not extend this table to our LGBTQ brothers and sisters, where do we go to here?

When a spontaneous footwashing is held to support all walks of life in the church, why don’t we go from here?

When we focus so much on being in the world, not of the world, that we forget we are FOR the world, where do we go from here?

When Brethren rise through Brethren Disaster Ministries, New Community Project, On Earth Peace, Washington Advocacy…enough said, why don’t we go from here?

When we lift up the love of law over the law of love, where do we go from here?

Radically following the life of Jesus, why don’t we go from here?

Striving to live as radically as we began,
Kay, Mark, Sarah, Tyler

One thought on “YPTT reflections on Annual Conference 2011

  1. Kudos to the Youth Peace Travel Team for posting their thoughts! Just some reflections from someone who is no longer a young adult…
    Growing up as a child and youth in the Church of the Brethren (Manassas congregation) I always assumed that all Brethren believed the same as I did. Hmmm. How naive. Years later, I am amazed at how different we Brethren are. I realize now that I was blessed to have been brought up in a congregation that encouraged questioning and learning. And just because I happened to be born female did not limit the opportunities placed before me. I was never taught to take the Bible literally. On the contrary, I learned as a child and youth to ALWAYS question my motives when making life decisions. To wrestle with those tough issues. Where should I go to college? What career should I choose? When will I go into BVS? Who should I choose to marry? How many children should I have? All of these decisions have been made through the filter of a faith that is committed to following Jesus in all aspects of life. It saddens me to see our church family at odds with one another. Could it be that in the classroom of life we are so focused on the scripture book that we have lost sight of our teacher? It may sound like I am being judgemental about those who are a bit different from me. As if my way is the best way. I guess, being human, we all do that. I think the young adults are making a better effort to try to understand one another by at least seeking to meet and talk. I am learning from their example to address the areas where I am uncomfortable. My own daughter taught me that when she approached the BRF booth at Annual Conference in 2009 and asked the gentlemen there if she could speak to some BRF young adult women about the significance of the prayer covering. Through those conversations a bond of friendship was formed and she invited them to play four-square and participate in the young adult activities at conference. Even at age 54 I am still learning. There is hope.

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