Thursday, April 02, 2009

We Must Go Through Samaria

Our Allegheny District Conference was about more than just Riding the Wave of Church Planting.

It was also about "not taking the by-pass around Samaria." (A line from Super Jeff Powell's conference address.)

In keeping with the theme of the last two EFCA National Leadership Conferences, we focused on reaching and loving those people who are near us but not like us, just like Jesus did in John 4. (See my reports and reflections from those conferences: 2007, 2008.)

The national director of Samaritan Way, the reconciliation ministry of the EFCA, Alvin Sanders was our keynote speaker. He spoke humbly, passionately, and biblically about reconciliation between God and people and then how that affects reconciliation between people, too. In a break-out session (provacatively titled "The Drama of Obama"), Alvin explained how we live in a post-racial society right now--which is not to say that race (as a social construct) doesn't matter at all, but that it has a different meaning and significance now than it did in the past. Very helpful.

Check out the Samaritan Way website for resources to get you thinking about "your Samaria."