There is mystery here

A post from Massachusetts alternate deputy Lallie Lloyd:

At General Convention and my inner eye is flashing like a slide show when I sit down to pray.

The faces of people I’ve seen, talked with and passed in the cavernous halls of the Indiana Convention Center flash past. I’ve talked with people I met at my church in Philadelphia in 1981, before I knew that General Convention existed. And I made friends yesterday with alternate deputies from the dioceses of Northwest Texas and Utah who sit next to me in the House of Deputies, and the day before with a young seminarian from Virginia.

So instead of resisting these flashing faces, I pray for them and for all of us.

How will we agree on whether vestry members need to be confirmed? What are the implications of opening the Eucharistic table to the unbaptized? How will we maintain the great blessing of our ungainly, but rich and diverse, leadership structure–with laity, priests and bishops sharing power at every level of governance–with the need to be a streamlined and nimble church in the 21st century?

There is mystery here. It is deeply human–at times frustrating, boring, silly–and it is a miracle the whole thing holds together. There’s no guarantee we’ll get things right, and we will make mistakes. But there is a transcendent quality too. Watching 800 people make decisions as one body; learning from thoughtful testimony from a perspective different than mine. Worshiping, singing, praying together. Listening for the Spirit and trusting that the Spirit is guiding us—collectively–resting in that confidence, even while zooming off to a committee meeting.

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