I just returned from the Potomac Association United Church of Christ Conference. I missed the Mid-Atlantic District Church of the Brethren Conference this year, due to the Wesley Class on UCC polity that required to be at the PA-UCC Conference. One might say I deserved it.
I could say it was just another boring meeting. Made so because I didn't have all the frames of reference for the details. (Thanks to homework, I do have a concept of the polity.) What was more lacking were relationships. Part of any conference is time spent with friends, especially those you don't often see. I did know a few people at this conference and had several enjoyable discussions with new people. Even though the extended relationships were lacking, I've made some new friends.
The big difference that I noticed was the large chunks of time spent on discussion of Justice issues. A panel presented on current committee work on Justice. There was a Q&A on Justice following where people spoke passionately to several of the key topics in process. Opening worship was focussed on the injustice that exists for refugees. With all the details involved in polity, it seemed that the policy of justice was the real passion for the day. Every denomination has it's problems, all business meetings have sections that are boring, but even still, I was impressed. Kudos to the UCC! "God IS still speaking!" through many of you.