My heart is filled with gratitude and thanksgiving for our very successful completion of organizing the Tennessee-Western Kentucky Conference of The United Methodist Church last Saturday. This good work was brought to completion by many, many people over a ten-year period of time. One of the sometimes forgotten players in this story is Bishop Ben Chamness who served as interim Bishop 2011-2012. Under Bishop Chamness’ leadership, the Memphis and Tennessee Conference Cabinets began meeting together and in that season a few cross-conference appointments were made. When I arrived in September of 2012 we considered how to continue this journey.
While the cabinets continued to meet and work together, we laid down the conversation of a new conference until we could gain clarity over our mission and vision, and values which we did. Our mission and vision have not changed as we continue to “offer Christ to a hurting world one neighborhood at a time.” This has not changed as we seek to find opportunities to strengthen local congregations. Over time, we continued to collaborate and discover ways to create new relationships and opportunities for growing together.
I am including the video of last Saturday’s message, “What Shall We Now Do?”I encourage you to share it with your congregations as we seek to remember our Why.
In this Advent Season, may our hearts be filled with joy as we celebrate the coming of the Christ Child.
I give thanks that God has allowed me to walk this journey with you.