I Wrote a Thing: Stories for the UCC’s 2019 General Synod

Hawai’i Conference delegates present lei to the officers of the United Church of Christ

This is not the first time I’ve written (and photographed, and even shot video) for the General Synod of the United Church of Christ, the denomination’s biennial deliberative meeting. I first wrote about the 1999 Synod in Providence, Rhode Island. Since the 2007 Synod in Hartford, Connecticut, I have reported for various bodies of the UCC, including United Church News beginning in 2011.

This year, I filed stories with both the Hawai’i Conference and United Church News. Here they are, organized by date:

A vision of endless possibilities for changing the world (June 22, United Church News)

  • The Rev. Dr. Karen Georgia Thompson, nominee for Associate General Minister for Global Engagement, addressed the Synod on the first night.

General Synod Opens its Celebration of Light (June 22, Hawai’i Conference)

  • The General Synod themes, taken from the Gospel of Matthew, took center place during the opening day and its evening worship service.

The challenging choice of workshops (June 23, United Church News)

  • Summarizing the wide range of workshop choices is, shall we say somewhere between a challenge and impossible. I confess that only one of the workshops during the second block received any attention at all. That may have had something to do with who the presenter was…

Repudiating ‘Doctrine of Discovery’ is life’s work for Ho Chunk church member (June 23, United Church News)

  • Sometimes stories get handed to you. I’d been interviewing Hawai’i Conference delegates for the summary just below and a delegate overheard me saying that I was a reporter. He spoke to me on the street, telling me that there was somebody I needed to talk to – and a moment later, spotted Larry Littlegeorge and put us together.

Learning at General Synod (June 23, Hawai’i Conference)

  • “Learning” refers both to the emphasis of the schedule – lots of workshops on Sunday – and also to the experience of the delegates that day.

Two United Church of Christ national officers elected Monday morning in Milwaukee (June 24, United Church News)

  • This was supposed to be a simple story. But when the debate gets complicated, so does the reporting. The editors and I worked hard to make it clear and accurate – and still had to make changes later when people had questions.

General Synod Delegates Work and Worship Through Sunday (June 24, Hawai’i Conference)

  • Sundays at Synod are given to delegates’ work on committees, and to the major worship service of the day, which is open to anyone. There were very few empty seats for that service.

Pacific and Asian voices praise the light amidst the darkness (June 25, United Church News)

  • Monday night’s service really caught my heart and soul. Usually, I can’t both cover worship and participate in it. This time, I could. I was so glad I’d been assigned to write about it.

From East and West, father and daughter come to Synod (June 25, United Church News)

  • The original purpose of this story was to explain why I spent all my time covering one workshop. It took on its own life, of course.

Synod calls U.S. to pull back from brink of nuclear war (June 25, United Church News)

  • A last-minute assignment as we headed off to cover committee work, this reconfirms long-time views of the UCC.

Synod Recognizes Mental Health Network as Historically Underrepresented Group (June 25, United Church News)

  • And yes, I did quote my daughter in this story. For, um, the third time this Synod.

Colectivo de UCC Latinx Ministries becomes Historically Underrepresented Group (June 25, United Church News)

  • This was an interesting story to follow, as the changes in emphasis with the new way to organize Latinx ministries aren’t easy to distinguish.

General Synod Elects Officers and Calls for Justice (June 25, Hawai’i Conference

  • There probably should have been a summary story on June 26, but I was traveling, so…

2 responses to “I Wrote a Thing: Stories for the UCC’s 2019 General Synod

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