Monday, July 21, 2008
Day Five--Getting down to it
First, an apology. I had promised some video today and I had in mind some footage of our first "indaba group." (More on that later) but I pushed the wrong button on the camera and had nothing recorded when I got back to the room, so that will have to wait until tomorrow. In the meantime, there should be some stock photos coming up in a few hours, so you can have a look on the photo gallery of the official web-site.
I am taking the "movie making" part of my job seriously. One of the press comments was that "many bishops are blogging from Lambeth, but only Bishop Smith from Arizona has movies!"
Two interesting things today: We had a meeting of the American Bishops in the Big Tent this afternoon and one of the topics was the status of Gene Robinson, who you know has not been invited. There is some misinformation I want to clear up: Gene was NOT excluded from the HOB meeting! He was invited to join us and accepted. The problem was that we are in conference facilities and since he has not been invited to the Conference, he was not given security clearance. Know that the American HOB is concerned about this and it is working on a way that Gene can be included. Stay tuned.
The second item is that we began those "indaba" groups I mentioned. They are intended to be intentional conversation groups modeled on a South African method of village meetings in which everyone gets a chance to speak and thus (hopefully) arrive at some consensus. Now,after our small morning Bible study group of 6 people we move into our Indaba groups. Each of these has about 30 people. During the course of those meetings we sometimes divide into smaller groups as well. The theory is good, although so far, my group has pretty much functioned like you would expect any small group to function, namely, most of the talking is done by a few people. But that may change as time goes on and we get more comfortable. The good news is that we got right into some heavy discussions about the nature of Anglican identity. The tone is respectful, although clearly there are some huge differences. At least we are talking...and listening!
I am looking forward to tonights option presentation on evangelism by Brian McClaren, one of my favorite authors on the topic of church growth and "emergent church" phenomena.
And videos tomorrow--I promise!