I’m in Denver right now for my denomination’s annual pastors’ conference. I love our denomination, and this conference is a great reminder of it. This year’s speaker is John Ortberg. After I have coffee with a friend, James Kim, I’m going to go into the opening session with Ortberg this morning. I look forward to hear what he has to say. They also have a lot of really great break-out sessions that happen throughout the days, and free lunches and dessert times that happen as well. But the best part of the week is connecting with other pastors. After being in the denomination for a while, I’ve been able to make some good friends. These are friendships with people who are going through similar struggles. They are trying to plant churches, preach the Bible, start new ministries, and engage in justice ministries. It’s hard work and this is a great time to connect and share stories.
I also had my ordination interview yesterday. I passed! It was by and large a warm and supportive process that left me feeling affirmed more than questioned. There wasn’t rigid doctrinal probing or hard-nose interpretation of my paper. In fact the in the one area where I gave an answer that was doctrinally sub-par my interviewer simply suggested, “you might want to brush up on that.” I’m not sure too many other denominations would be as gracious.
I’m in Denver enjoying my time with the Evangelical Covenant Church. I’m meeting with friends, and I look forward to hearing Ortberg speak. This weekend is another great reminder of why I’m glad we are a part of this denomination!