Q. What are the session options, what do they cover, and who can/should attend?
A. The finance/budget sessions are self-explanatory. The discussion helps conference members understand how and why we use our financial resources as we do.
Discerning Your Kairos Issue by Teresa Blythe teaches participants a model for doing discernment based on our speaker's encouragement that churches find the one thing to which God is calling them to do in the world and organize to do it.
Vernon Meyer will present the spiritual underpinning for advocacy work in his workshop.
ALICE training teaches churches preparedness for a violent incident, and individuals how to increase their chances of survival.
Resolution workshop gives depth of understanding on the decisions the conference delegates will be asked to make. Resolution documents will be coming next week to the annual meeting web page.
One workshop being added is Good Shepherd UCC's story of how they use community organizing to change their community.
Q. Are we all invited to the pastor moderator breakfast?
A. No, just pastors and moderators.
Q. How do we pay for meals including the banquet?
A. The banquet is included in your registration. Lunches are available for purchase from food trucks on Thursday and Friday, and on your own after the closing on Saturday. Breakfast is on your own; if you are staying at the Radisson, it's included in your room cost.
Q. Why should we consider the Thursday sessions?
A. Thursday is a pre-event to build participants' understanding of community organizing techniques as a tool/strategy for ministry. The speaker, Rev. Alexia Salvatierra is a world renowned expert in faith and organizing who is also a local church pastor. She will share a vision of community organizing that is rooted in our faith and not in anger, divisiveness, or political platforms. This is a "how to engage the world 101" kind of workshop.
Q. Should we encourage our non-delegate friends to attend, and what will they get out of it?
A. Yes! The worship will be unique and powerful. The speaker is a world-renowned expert in faith and organizing and is also a pastor. The workshops offer practical skills and understanding for leading the church today. You will hear inspiring stories from around the conference about what is working and how people are engaging their communities for positive change for the sake of the Gospel. We will host a Southwest Conference 101 session on Friday morning before worship for non-delegates to hear about the work and vision of the SWC. Vendors/exhibitors, many of whom are new to our annual meeting this year, will be on site to share their organization/ministry with attendees and offer opportunities to join their efforts to change the world.
Q. Will there be a "league of voters" version of a voting guide to the issues? Some of us need guidance.
A. Yes. In materials being sent out next week we will prepare delegates for the matters at hand. We also will host a new delegate orientation on Friday morning of annual meeting, and a Southwest Conference 101 session for non-delegates to share the work and vision of the SWC.
After the registration deadline on March 31, an annual meeting packet will be sent to everyone registered for the annual meeting with reports, stats, document drafts, schedule, and other information pertaining to workshops and business. It's going to be a great event.